Sunday, February 24, 2008

A Military Recruiter Articulates a Justification for the Iraq War

MediaMouse Home Page
February 22 2008

In covering protests against military recruiting over the past few years in West Michigan, Media Mouse has repeatedly documented military recruiters responding to protests with a variety of insults and even physical violence. In February of 2007, a recruiter told protestors to "go back across the border" to "take a bath." In May of 2006, recruiters called protestors "douche bags" and used homophobic insults. While these two examples stand out, it is part of a pattern of derogatory comments coming from military recruiters. Almost without fail, they always resort to petty insults and claiming that they are here to "protect" the right to free speech.

And now, here is more of the same. A military recruiter who is upset about a video Media Mouse produced last year recently posted a three-minute video on YouTube articulating the tired old argument full of cliches about the military giving us the freedom to protest. It reaches a high point when he says that without a military, "you would be so busy just trying to survive, just take a look at third world countries, the last thing they have time to do is protest against the very people making that provide them with freedom." It's just one of many statements that largely defy logic ...

Government Report on Military Recruiting Abuses Finds 50% Increase in Abuses

August 15 2006

Data analyzed in a new report by the federal Government Accountability Office (GAO) on military recruiting abuses has revealed a 50% increase in recruiter abuses from 2004 to 2005. The report found that allegations of abuse increased from 4,400 cases to almost 6,500 and substantiated cases from 400 to nearly 630. Perhaps most strikingly, criminal violations by recruiters rose from 30 to 70 cases. The GAO cautioned that these numbers represent only the data that has been collected, with the GAO’s report explaining that various branches of the military do not track all allegations of recruiter abuses. Consequently, the report’s abstract states that the data examined “likely underestimate[s] the true number of recruiter irregularities.” In defining “irregularities,” the report described them as “willful and unwillful acts of omission and improprieties” that are either perpetrated or alleged to be perpetrated by recruiters in order to “facilitate the recruiting process for an applicant.” These “irregularities” encompass a wide range of abuses including administrative paperwork errors, failing to disclose disqualifying eligibility criteria, instructing recruits to hide medical conditions or legal problems, falsifying documents, and sexual harassment.

The GAO undertook the study in light of the military’s inability to meet many of its recruiting goals over the past year and the rise in aggressive recruiting tactics to compensate for these failures. ...

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