Friday, March 09, 2007

Most youth ineligible for Army, military survey says

Fort Lauderdale, Fla. — Close to three-quarters of American youth are ineligible to serve in the Army and patriotism among the country’s recruitable population has been sliding since 2002.

That was the assessment of a series of recent surveys conducted in fiscal 2006 and early fiscal 2007 by the Army’s Center for Accessions Research and presented Thursday by Gen. William S. Wallace, commanding general of Training and Doctrine Command.

“It’s an Army problem, but it’s also a national problem,” said Wallace, who presented a slice of the report at the winter meeting of the Association of the United States Army.

TraDoc is the major command that oversees Accessions Command and the subordinate U.S. Army Recruiting Command. Recruiting is seen as a looming and growing challenge as the Army begins to expand by 65,000 more soldiers.

According to Wallace, only 27 percent of youth between the ages of 17 and 24 are eligible for recruiting.

The remaining 73 percent, he said, “are morally, intellectually or physically” unfit for service. “It’s the lowest it’s been in more than 10 years.”

Read the rest at the Army Times