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Joe Biden Feels a Draft

Joe Biden on Meet the Press today:

The United States will "have to face" a painful dilemma on restoring the military draft as rising casualties result in persistent shortfalls in US army recruitment, a top US senator warned. Joseph Biden, the top Democrat of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, made the prediction after new data released by the Pentagon showed the US Army failing to meet its recruitment targets for four straight months.

"We're going to have to face that question," Biden said on NBC's "Meet the Press" television show when asked if it was realistic to expect restoration of the draft. "The truth of the matter is, it is going to become a subject, if, in fact, there's a 40 percent shortfall in recruitment. It's just a reality," he said.

The number of U.S. military deaths in Iraq is now over 1,700. We should be thinking of an exit strategy, not a draft. [link via Oliver Willis.]

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  • Re: Joe Biden Feels a Draft (none / 0) (#1)
    by jarober on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 12:59:57 PM EST
    wow, what a shocker. Joint US/Iraqi military actions have dropped the number of daily bombings dramatically - so TL is back to the "fear the (non-existant) draft" meme. For the left, it's "undermine US efforts, all day, every day"

    Re: Joe Biden Feels a Draft (none / 0) (#2)
    by mckimj on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 12:59:57 PM EST
    I've been a criminal defense lawyer for 30 years. I beleive in the right to bear arms and the ACLU. I have a suggestion. This country has locked up all of the young people who used to fight wars and taken away there right to carry a gun (even to war}. Let's legalize pot, respect the right to own a gun, let the boys out of prison, and maybe some of them will sign up. We're so tough on crime there's no one left to fight

    Re: Joe Biden Feels a Draft (none / 0) (#3)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 12:59:57 PM EST
    Rep. Rangel at least has the guts to submit HR 2723, but he was a bit slower this session, May instead of January. You'd think that Joe could make a copy of it and submit it as a "twin" in the Senate, which had no draft bill in the system.

    Re: Joe Biden Feels a Draft (none / 0) (#4)
    by ras on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 12:59:58 PM EST
    The Left is very kind, that when it tries to discredit the Right with (yet another) bogus draft rumor, it makes the game obvious. Best ya got? Guess so.

    Re: Joe Biden Feels a Draft (none / 0) (#5)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 12:59:58 PM EST
    Seems like Iraq is a fly paper for American troops or something.

    Re: Joe Biden Feels a Draft (none / 0) (#6)
    by roger on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 12:59:58 PM EST
    Do Jr and Ras read the papers? The army is (yet again) falling far short of their recruiting and retention goals. This while enlistment bonus' have risen to $20k. Where do you think the troops are going to come from? Your sarcastic tone, while spouting nonsense, shows me that you know the dishonesty of your statements. Give it up, no one takes you seriously

    Re: Joe Biden Feels a Draft (none / 0) (#7)
    by roger on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 12:59:58 PM EST
    If you want honesty, try this on for size

    Re: Joe Biden Feels a Draft (none / 0) (#8)
    by Mreddieb on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 12:59:58 PM EST
    Well all you guys on the right Here's your chance to either sign up your self or have one of you children or available kin to go in your stead. I understand john Hindrocket's Son just graduated from high school! Wow I'll bet he's with his dad right now down at the Marine recruitment office showing his loyality to his master GW BUshbag! RIGHT! So let's hear from all you Iraq war lovers on how you intend to do your (or substitue's) tour in Iraq. I anxiously await your replys.

    Re: Joe Biden Feels a Draft (none / 0) (#9)
    by pigwiggle on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 12:59:58 PM EST
    The only legislators earnestly trying to reinstate the draft are Democrats. Oh, and it’s not because they really want it reinstated, they want ‘chicken little’ headlines. Political stunt. “Well all you guys on the right Here's your chance to either sign up your self or have one of you children or available kin to go in your stead.” Likewise, there are blue helmets waiting in Sudan for all you progressives.

    Re: Joe Biden Feels a Draft (none / 0) (#10)
    by Che's Lounge on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 12:59:58 PM EST
    Ras, Chickenhawks are disgusting hypocrites. Chickenhawks who cackle from another country are even worse. Must be extra easy when it's not YOUR ass on the line. So cackle away. JR, wow, what a shocker. Joint US/Iraqi military actions have dropped the number of daily bombings dramatically - How fortunate for you that you don't have to answer to the families of the dozen US soldiers killed in the last three days. Or the families of the 50 odd Iraqis found dead in the last three days. So blather on. You've got all the answers. Things are going great. Except that congressmen on BOTH SIDES are calling for a withdrawl. I guess you blood lovers are losing support all over the place.

    Re: Joe Biden Feels a Draft (none / 0) (#11)
    by Mreddieb on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 12:59:58 PM EST
    Pig It's good to sound tough isn't it. I volunteered and served two tours in Combat in VN 1966-1968 I've spent the following 35 years disabled. This is not my childrens war it's your war you support it, SOooo.. are you or your children serving?

    Re: Joe Biden Feels a Draft (none / 0) (#12)
    by Mreddieb on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 12:59:58 PM EST
    I feel it's important to reaffirm that being against this war in Iraq is not a sign of weakness or Un-American or an act of undermining our efforts or troops or pro terrorist. This is a standard attack of Chickenhawks and war mongers. It truly takes more courage and patriotism to stand up against the powers that be.

    Re: Joe Biden Feels a Draft (none / 0) (#13)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 12:59:58 PM EST
    Well-said, Ed...but Blagh's surprised you actually had to explain it to people...as if the 'cons are going to say, "Hey nobody wants to fight this war, we may as well wrap things up..." No, they have to stick to the party line that if, unlike their own children who have probably never even driven past a military base, you don't sign up immediately, you hate America and you're a chickenheart... Of course, this doesn't apply to lawmakers' chidren...they have to stick around to "nepotize" their parents' Senate and Congressional seats... Which brings up another question: When was the last time someone not related to, married to or grafted to another politician didn't win a Senate or Congressional Seat?

    Re: Joe Biden Feels a Draft (none / 0) (#14)
    by pigwiggle on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 12:59:58 PM EST
    “This is not my childrens war it's your war you support it, …” I don’t support this war; I simply think as the military is structured the ‘your war, you fight it’ mentality is lame. Our military is all volunteer, staffed by folks who have agreed to fight and die at the whim of our legislators. As it stands expecting a ‘war advocate’ to fight isn’t much different than say expecting commuters to take turns driving the bus. “I volunteered and served two tours in Combat in VN 1966-1968 …” For the life of me I can’t see how fighting the faux communist threat is any more (or less) a legitimate use of the US armed forces, not to mention worthy of your time and health. And no, I won’t be fighting in any military conflicts short of a concerted invasion of US soil.

    Re: Joe Biden Feels a Draft (none / 0) (#15)
    by kdog on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 12:59:58 PM EST
    Our military is all volunteer, staffed by folks who have agreed to fight and die at the whim of our legislators
    Exactly right, and exactly why recruitment is down. Now that the youth see that the govt. will lie, mislead, and fudge facts to start a war, they ain't signing up. Who can blame them? I would never sign my life away to the whim of a two-bit politician, you'd have to be nuts.

    Re: Joe Biden Feels a Draft (none / 0) (#16)
    by Mreddieb on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 12:59:58 PM EST
    "As it stands expecting a ‘war advocate’ to fight isn’t much different than say expecting commuters to take turns driving the bus." Huh? Pig do you think fighting and dieing in war is no different than commuting on a bus? Well I'd like to see you jump into the drivers seat in armorless Humvee in Iraq. Your not rooting for a joy ride to disneyland pal. When I speak of WAR I speak from experience. Picking up your buddies innards and brains and putting them in a bodybag tends to make you "Quik to rage" when Chickenhawks talk lightly of sending others to fight and die at the whims of legislative chickenhawks! If Piggy, as you say, You won't fight but you support others to fight and die for you, you are a Coward. All you fancy double talk is just BS. Welcome to the World of BUSH/CHENEY Cowards.

    Re: Joe Biden Feels a Draft (none / 0) (#17)
    by pigwiggle on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 12:59:58 PM EST
    “Pig do you think fighting and dieing in war is no different than commuting on a bus?” You miss this point. Running into a burning building isn’t the same as delivering the mail; undercover infiltrating a violent gang isn’t the same as cleaning toilets. However, fireman, mailman, police officer, and janitor are all jobs folks freely choose (or don’t) every day; today soldiering is a career. The soldiers fighting in Iraq joined the US military with the full history of US military action at their hand. That they are surprised at being asked to fight in, to be generous, a war of questionable merit is equivalent to a firefighter’s surprise at being asked to extract folks from a burning house. “Your not rooting for a joy ride to disneyland pal.” Like I said (did you read the post?) I don’t support US military intervention anywhere save US borders. Pragmatically; I think we would likely have fewer folks to protect our boarders from if we would only use our military to protect our borders. “If Piggy, as you say, You won't fight but you support others to fight and die for you, you are a Coward.” I invite you to reread the post; you missed/misunderstood key points.

    Re: Joe Biden Feels a Draft (none / 0) (#18)
    by Dadler on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:00:00 PM EST
    Biden is raising the issue as a warning. The right controls both houses of congress and the white house. The Dems can do NOTHING on their own. Joe D is saying that the conditions for a draft are ripening, and that considering who controls all branches of the federal goverment no one should be surprised if the draft comes back. Is that really so hard for the wingers on this site to understand? Or is savvy thinking just not their thing? probably some of both.

    Re: Joe Biden Feels a Draft (none / 0) (#19)
    by glanton on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:00:00 PM EST
    "I would never sign my life away to the whim of a two-bit politician, you'd have to be nuts." Bingo, kdog.

    Re: Joe Biden Feels a Draft (none / 0) (#20)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:00:00 PM EST
    Here's something to think about...The US Army lied to Pat Tillman's family about how he died. They had a specific reason to lie about it. Tillman's story, well-publicized by now and in no need of repeating, was tailor-made to help the Army recruit young people who may have felt like Tillman did, or at the very least considered they might survive long enough to spend that pay for college. Problem was, though, that Tillman died before he could become the Army's poster child. This isn't a slam against Pat Tillman; he did what he felt he had to do, without hesitation or reservation, and his death, at the hands of his own comrades, was besmerched by the same Army that he willing gave up a lucrative pro football career to serve. So if the US Army would lie to save face in the Pat Tillman case, wouldn't they also lie to draw others in? And wouldn't the Bush administration, which has built this war against Iraq on a stack of lies taller than Mount Mitchell and has not dropped a single piece of ordnance on the real terror threat of Saudi Arabia, lie long enough to get a draft in place? Pretty soon, this will get bigger than partisan politics, and a draft will be required to sustain our efforts in this war. Biden's right, folks, a draft is coming. It's just a question of when.

    Re: Joe Biden Feels a Draft (none / 0) (#21)
    by Richard Aubrey on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:00:00 PM EST
    The lefties need a draft. During the VN era, it was the draft that provided them with some recruits, so to speak. The draft went, so did some of the pressure. The lefties are not anti-American. It's just that there is nothing so catastrophic that they will not try to facilitate it to embarrass Bush. Including defeat. The lesser of two evils and so forth. Howsomever, there is some interesting info in the details of the recruiting shortfall. It's not in the combat arms. The studs who want to fight still keep showing up. The folks who thought non-combat meant just that are seeing transport and QM and signals and various others getting into fights. That's where the shortfalls are. Now, if the Army did as the Marines do, which is to say, join us and become a fearsome warrior--although, if your luck is out you may end up in a motor pool or something--they would probably not have the trouble they have now, and which the jarheads don't have. BTW, you don't need to serve to make a prudential judgment about a war. It either will make things better, or worse, in the long run. IMO, this will make things better in the long run. For the lefties, that's bad because it makes the republicans not look so bad. In fact, one of the complaints about Starship Troopers (all-time record for worst movie from a good book) was that the franchise was restricted to veterans. The lefties--then--figured that was fascism. But then, they think everything is fascism. So you want decisions on war made by veterans only? Or serving soldiers only? Or...? Careful what you ask for. That might exclude a whole lot of lefties.

    Re: Joe Biden Feels a Draft (none / 0) (#22)
    by pigwiggle on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:00:01 PM EST
    “Biden's right, folks, a draft is coming. It's just a question of when.” You couldn’t be more wrong. All this draft talk is simply part of the effort to turn public opinion further against the war. Come on, look who’s proposed the bills and keeps giving it mileage in the press. If Republicans wanted to expedite the loss of their executive and legislative hold they simply need to instate a draft. Democrats could run with the single plank of repealing the draft, sweep the legislature and later the presidency, and have it repealed before a single tour is over. Republicans know a draft is political suicide, and you know it too. So drop the histrionics.

    Re: Joe Biden Feels a Draft (none / 0) (#23)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:00:01 PM EST
    ...and keeps giving it mileage in the press. I might have agreed with PW's entire post if he hadn't included the above line. But give it another 8 years or so and I have no doubt that our culture will have been socially and economically engineered to a point where a draft could be reinstated without any need for fear of the powerful losing their power.

    Re: Joe Biden Feels a Draft (none / 0) (#24)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:00:01 PM EST
    I take it back. After reading it for a second time, I am under no impression that Democrats could overcome the gerrymandered districting, Corporate media, and other obstacles to sweep anything. Nor do I believe the Democrats could rid themselves of Corporate influence long enough to offer a coherent voice of dissent. However, I don't see the Bush Admin trying to implement a draft before '08 - unless we were to be attacked on American soil (standing army or not).

    Re: Joe Biden Feels a Draft (none / 0) (#25)
    by Sailor on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:00:01 PM EST
    wow, what a shocker. Joint US/Iraqi military actions have dropped the number of daily bombings dramatically
    Uhhhhh, NO! Facts