Saturday, October 20, 2007

One way to bolster military enlistments

Spiegel Online:
Since Sept. 11, 2001, the United States has granted US citizenship to 32,500 foreign soldiers. In July 2002, US President George W. Bush issued an executive order to expand existing legislation to offer a fast track to citizenship to foreigners who agree to fight for the US Armed Forces. About 8,000 non-Americans have joined the US military every year since then.

The foreigners already represent 5 percent of all recruits. They even make up the majority of soldiers from some New York and Los Angeles neighborhoods. Four years and 3,800 US deaths after the beginning of the Iraq campaign, fewer and fewer American citizens are willing to fight in a war opposed by a majority of the US population. But despite the Iraq war's lack of popularity, US generals are demanding 180,000 new recruits a year.

The Pentagon already spends $3.2 billion a year on recruitment, even sending its recruiters to high schools to persuade 17-year-olds still a year away from graduation to enlist.
No one wants to fight Bush's war, so people desperate to become Americans are bribed to do so. If they survive.

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