Effectiveness of a Military Draft in the United States and Compulsory Military Service
In the United States alone, the use of the military drafts, as a strategy in the advent of war, has proven to be very effective. The United States government used a military draft during the civil war. It proved to be very effective in the sense that it made the United States government prepare for the outbreak of war. In its preparations for war, the US government, with an aid of the draft, managed to set aside enough troops that were to engage in combat situations. The United States has also secured the additional troops for the purposes of war as required by the military draft. These additional troops were important in that they ensured continuity of war until it reached a point of termination. Hence, the use of a military draft as a strategy in almost all instances guaranteed the United States victory (Dahl, 1977).
The military draft implemented in the United States had functioned based on the maintenance of a strong and ready military force that was always prepared for combat. This was of the great importance to the United States, as a country, because the incorporation of a military draft as a part of its military strategies safeguarded the security of the country. Currently military drafts are relevant in the sense that in the event of a conflict between countries, the United States government will at no time be caught off-guard in the event of an outbreak of war. The military draft ensures that the armed forces acquire proper skills from the military training. These skilled soldiers are beneficial to a country because they can be of a great assistance in handling both domestic and non-domestic issues. The former include serving to give assistance in case of emergency, such as floods, hunger and fatal accidents. This is usually the case after the termination of the conscription period (Kreidberg, Henry, 1955).
Military drafts are essential to the U.S.A since they ensure that all people of different occupations become participants in the sharing of the sacrifice of war and the burdens that are attached to it. This was witnessed, when the highest recruitment rates were recorded in the countries, where the income levels are well below the national average. Hence, the use of military drafts ensures that the countries engaging in war take responsibility for the accrued damages.
The use of a military draft is also of a great advantage to the citizens of the United States for the reason that the men and women, who get the chance to be drafted, stand the chance of gaining from the training offered by the military forces. The training offered impacts the lives of the individuals in a positive way because they get an opportunity to better themselves. The use of a military draft puts discrimination in the military on the minimal levrl, because the recruitment gathers people from the different backgrounds to join the military force. This, as a result, promotes unity within the United States and the patriotic devotion to the country. The draft ensures that those members, who join the military forces, are put into consideration after their time in active service. This means that soldiers can enlist to join the National Guard or reserves after the termination of their active duty. As a result, it ensures that the drafted soldiers are in a position to earn a living and support their families (Wagner, 2008).
In Rwanda, for instance, a military draft was used in the planning of genocide, as the member of the Hutu forces used refugee camps to plan and continue their attacks. This was also a tactics that President Paul Kagame used as a leader of the anti-genocidal RPF and achieved great success (Gourevitch, 2000). The use of a military draft has made the United States effective in the advent of war. The military draft in the United States ensures that the country has the best-equipped military force in the world. This equipment is designed in a way that it makes the life of the American soldiers easier in combat situations. Different organizations, such as DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Project Agency), are responsible for the technological advancements of the equipment used by the US military forces. This equipment reduces the vulnerability of the soldiers by reducing the number of cases, where the soldiers are prone to attack because of adequate planning; hence, the incorporation of a military draft is essential.
Compulsory military service has its pros and cons. The compulsory joining of the military is of advantage to the members of the society of a particular country. This is due to the reason that joining the military by members of the youth promotes the growth of strong, fit and capable citizens with stable characters. Due to this fact, most countries emphasize that the youth in their countries has to join the military. Another advantage is that joining the military allows young people to have the chance to acquire more life skills. Military training offers a wide range of skills to young people necessary to make them self-sufficient (Wagner, 2008).
The compulsory attendance of the military service also reduces the number of delinquencies among the youth. The compulsory attendance of military service prevents the young members of the society from engaging in unproductive activities. The unproductive activities, such as drug abuse, are kept in check in the military. This is mainly due to the reason that military activities keep them busy. In addition, engaging in drug abuse and unlawful activities is punishable in the military. Thus, it promotes discipline among the youth recruited (Summers, Summers, 1941).
On the contrary, the military during recruitment requires the members, who are able to meet and fit into the military pattern; hence, the compulsory enlistment to join the armed forces frequently acquires draftees whom are an object of ridicule. The compulsory attendance of the military also affects the psyche of the physically incapable draftees. The scenario that John Crawford describes, when he was in the National Guard sent to a mission in Iraq, shows that ilitary personnel are supposed to be fit. In fact, no one is supposed to be forcefully subjected to such scenarios (Crawford, 2006).
Mark Twain, in his account, gives a picture of the preparation that the country had done in the war. It had prepared the volunteers, who would fight in the war, and when the war came, they were sent to fight with appropriate resources and with the necessary support (Twain, 1987). He shows that it is not necessary that a compulsory military attendance be used, because people can always volunteer to join the army and be upbeat to fight for their country.
Only those, who can survive the emotional and harrowing experiences, should be allowed to join the military forces. Therefore, compulsory military attendance should not be done. This is due to the reason that draftees incapable of meeting the fitness requirements are subjected to the brutal treatment that may cause unforeseen harmful results. Another factor undermining the compulsory enlisting in the military is that in the modern times the frequency of occurrence of war has greatly declined. Hence, joining the armed forces reduces the number of capable workforce to handle other jobs within the country. Therefore, army recruitment should be controlled whereby only those, who are capable, should be drafted.