Would a Return to Conscription Substantially Reduce the Probability of War?

As a veteran of Vietnam and a staunch anti-war protester when I returned home….I have worked in the anti-war movement for many years that is until age and handicap got in my way…..and I still believe that there are alternatives to war in most cases.

I have used all the slogans that you may be aware of from the past……but now with our newest, longest war I am finding myself thinking seriously about the anti-war movement again…..since Vietnam it has slowly been replaced with that BS concept of American Exceptionalism….plus a tightly controlled media that is acting as a propaganda tool of the government…..they do not report on any of the wars unless there is no way around it and then only a bare minimum of information…..

I have asked many times what has happened to our anti-war movement…..we are fighting more wars than ever before and yet there is very little in the way of protests of those wars…..why?

Where Did the Antiwar Movement Go? by Tom Engelhardt — Antiwar.com.

And now I find myself considering an unthinkable position in my youth….the draft….I have written several pieces on the concept…..

Source: Why No Draft? | In Saner Thought

Then there is a op-ed I wrote for Ace News Room……asking a question about the draft…….

Source: Time To Re-Think Conscription? | Ace News Room

I worries me that I am considering such a thing…..especially after I worked so hard to battle the draft in the past…..but the way that our country is choosing to fight almost willy-nilly…..it gives me cause for lots of concern…..

Source: David R. Henderson, Would a Return to Conscription Substantially Reduce the Probability of War? | Library of Economics and Liberty

I know there are many links within my post but I am trying to make my case…..we need to revive the anti-war movement…..how to do that is still a mystery….but we cannot give up on the ideals that so many had worked for in the past.

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4 thoughts on “Would a Return to Conscription Substantially Reduce the Probability of War?

  1. Very interesting article. I was at a seminar years ago and someone who had worked with DoD in the late 70’s spoke about this issue. He said that the biggest lesson that the military learned was that they could not expect public support for an unpopular war while using conscription. I served in the Navy, and I know that the military does what it is ordered to do. The military doesn’t just go out and start wars. It takes politicians to do that.

    The gentleman went on to say that a new plan was put in place by the late 70s and early 80s. The all-volunteer military was introduced as an effort to depoliticize wars. This was accomplished by comforting the middle class, as it existed back then. The theory was this: While poor Americans would see the military and use it as a means toward an education and a future, the middle class would still see the patriotic aspect of service. In the event of another war, which politicians are always more than willing to provide, the middle class would be less likely to protest and resist against their own who went “because they love America” into the military. Conscription provided everyone with something to protest against. This was the reason for the anti-Vietnam protest successes. People fought against the monolithic structure that conscription represented.

    Now, after the republiKKKans have destroyed the middle class it is hard to get around the patriotic thing. So many people serve in the Reserves, it is not a popular to protest against military action abroad because that allegedly means that you are stabbing your neighbor in the back who is on a deployment. Your neighbor isn’t a professional soldier, he wasn’t drafted, he went because he loves ‘Murica.

    The dumbing down process continues. To protest an unjust war is to hate your country. This means that all war becomes more justified. This also means that war becomes necessary to provide the military-industrial complex with more customers. It becomes a self-sustaining perpetual war motion machine.

    Having said that, I think that conscription would help the problem because when only the very rich (see republiKKKan political candidates from the Vietnam era) are able to elude military service, it becomes a common bond for all Americans. This makes war less popular because it restores the politicians as the bad guys who wend everyone’s kids to die.

    1. Than for your thoughts….the media now is the biggest obstacle….they tend to do what the government wants…..they will keep the population ignorant, as much as possible, to what is happening in the world of war (the reality not the game…LOL)

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