Home » US Military Continues to Relax Recruitment Criteria
Defence United States

US Military Continues to Relax Recruitment Criteria

According to the latest conscription regulations of the US Air Force, the body fat rate for male recruits is capped at 26 percent, and 36 percent for women. The previous limits were 20 percent and 28 percent respectively.

In the United States, men with more than 25 percent body fat and women with more than 32 percent body fat are classed as obese.

The US military previously relaxed the body fat requirements for recruits in 2007, which led to an additional 15,000 recruits that year.

The US military’s shortage of troops has not improved in recent years, but has worsened. One reason for this is the coronavirus pandemic, which has led to an increase in obesity among young Americans.

Before the COVID-19 pandemic, 18 percent of the US Army was obese. In 2021, 23 percent of the US Army was obese.

By the end of fiscal 2022, the US Army will have 466,400 troops, down from an expected 485,000. And the US Army is expected to remain 28,000 short of its target in 2023. The US Air Force and US Navy have barely made it through the recruiting process.

Besides, the status quo of the US military has also discouraged young people from joining the army. For example, sexual harassment and sexual crimes in the US military are particularly serious. In fiscal year 2021, the Department of Defense received 8,866 reports of sexual assault by US military personnel, 13 percent more than the previous fiscal year. According to a 2021 RAND Corporation report, it is estimated that one in 16 women in the US military have been sexually assaulted, and one in four have experienced sexual harassment.

The US military used to practice a policy of “don’t ask don’t tell” on sexual orientation. If members of the LGBT community in the US military are open about their sexual preferences, the risk of sexual harassment and abuse in the armed forces will increase dramatically.

In addition, it is worth noting that the various branches of the US military emphasize the difficulty of conscription out of the consideration of funds. For example, the US Air Force offered to help pay off $65,000 in student loans. That’s a good reason for it to ask Congress for money to help fill up the 10 percent gap in US Air Force’s conscription.

The terrorist attacks on Sept 11, 2001, pushed the military enthusiasm among young Americans to a peak. But now people’s zeal to serve the country has long gone, as besides the aforementioned reasons, they are also increasingly fed up with the US’ warmongering policies and practices around the world and realize that they would be serving the narrow ends of a few politicians, not those of the nation.

Source : Global China Daily