Pros & Cons of Military Draft
The regular army is comprised of individuals who voluntarily signed up. A military draft would require men aged between 18 and 25 to go before an evaluation panel to assess whether they are suitable to join the armed forces. There is no choice in the matter, basically, which is why a military draft is so contentious when people who join the armed forces will apparently be fighting for their country’s interests at risk of their own life. Not everyone believes what their country is fighting for and yet they are expected to risk being injured or killed in the line of duty.
Pros of military draft
From a political viewpoint, a military draft ensures that there are enough soldiers to actually fight in any wars that are being fought. When there are wars in more than one country and many soldiers dying, there need to be people to replace those leaving places such as Iraq and Afghanistan. There may also be an opportunity to save money, since there will no longer be any recruiting costs and the pay which drafted soldiers receive probably won’t be at the same level as professional soldiers.
Is it really effective?
However, equally it could be said that a military draft could end up costing more. Obviously, a lot of money has to go into training individuals who have no experience of life in the armed forces. The soldiers that are drafted may be reluctant and half-hearted, so that they are less inclined to fight on the battlefield. The idea of increasing the number of soldiers by introducing a military draft could backfire if all the drafted soldiers are incompetent, since they will not be much use when it comes to armed conflict.
Besides, the chances are that a significant number of drafted men would have jobs and responsibilities at home. They may lose out financially by being forced to join the army, thus leading to resentment and possibly debt, which also means that the government loses out in terms of tax revenues. Men would be forced to leave their homes and families, which is likely to be an anxious and depressing time for all those concerned. Ultimately, there would be a lot of resistance to a military draft, which would make it very hard for any politician to push this through.
I don’t agree with what the government fights for
Imposing a military draft could help to ease the pressure on an already overstretched army, providing new recruits who would be able to gain new experiences while abroad. However, it appears that there are many more downsides associated with forcing people to join the army, because not everyone wants to fight. Individuals ought to have a right to choose which path they take in life, and going to war shouldn’t be forced upon a group in society, young men, who have so much to give.
More on military: Facts about the US Army.