Monday, June 14, 2004

Fan, Meet Shit

COLORADO SPRINGS - Army re-enlistments have dropped suddenly and dramatically at Fort Carson and several other posts where combat units have recently returned from Iraq.

The surprising decline within the past 21/2 months has jolted recruiters and military analysts and provoked questions about the war's effect on the Army's recruiting ability.

Since Fort Carson units began coming home in April, post recruiters have met only 57 percent of their quota for re-enlisting first-term soldiers for a second hitch, according to an Army report.

More disturbing, recruiters say, is they're re-enlisting only 46 percent of the quota for "mid-career" noncommissioned officers. These are the young sergeants with four to 10 years of experience who are the backbone of the Army - its skilled soldiers, mentors and future senior NCOs.

GIs marching away from re-enlistment

Combined with the remarkable casualty rates among E-6s and up I addressed back on May 19 (here), the picture of an Army rapidly being hollowed out is becoming clear.


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