(PresidentialInsider.com)- It has long been known that the military has been facing recruitment issues. They even began to pander to the LGBT community in their advertisement entitled “The Calling,” featuring a girl who grew up with two moms. But it turns out that not even the wokest of the woke want to join what is considered the world’s greatest military.
Recruitment numbers are the lowest they have been since the end of the Vietnam War, according to Politico, and the Pentagon is facing severe pressure from lawmakers about why that is.
Representative Mike Gallagher, the top Republican on the House Armed Services’ subpanel, cited numerous concerns for low numbers, including COVID, obesity, competition from a healthy labor market, and a low interest in enlistment. “We are on the cusp of a military recruiting crisis,” he said, adding that when Republicans take back control of Congress, this will be the top priority of the Military Personnel Committee.
Democratic Representative Anthony Brown who also sits on the House Armed Services Committee said that the Pentagon needs to do more to encourage young Americans to enlist. “That means better pay, training, opportunities, connections and benefits. And deepening partnerships with traditionally underserved or overlooked communities to tap into the full talent pool of our country, he said.
Several DoD officials, former and current, point to the vaccine mandate and the military’s increasing “wokeness” as contributing factors to the low numbers. As the Army cuts off 40,000 National Guard troops and 22,000 Reserve soldiers from benefits, Mackenzie Eaglen, an expert with the conservative American Enterprise Institute, argues that the vaccine mandate has had “indisputably negative” impacts on recruiting.
Several Republicans joined with Representative Mike Waltz of the House Armed Services’ Readiness Subcommittee in a letter to Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin, requesting that he reconsider the vaccine mandate amid low recruitment numbers and as China is building up its military.
“At a time when the Department is struggling to recruit qualified young men and women fit for duty to fill the ranks, and while China is embarking on a massive military buildup which threatens American interests around the world, we should not be hindering our own readiness and capabilities by punishing and forcing out experienced and dedicated Guardsmen and Reservists,” the letter stated.
Recruitment numbers are so low that Chief of Naval Operations Admiral Michael Gilday, who last year recommended on a Navy reading list anti-American books such as “How to be an Anti-Racist,” said that the service is trying to recruit gamers and dial back on tattoo restrictions and its “zero tolerance” policy on marijuana usage.