The Jan. 3 article “Is no-draft military creating a warrior class?” expresses some very realistic points. “Those that do not learn from history are destined to repeat it” has been repeated by historians over and over. When a military is totally volunteer and the populace has little interest in its activities, those in charge of the government will use this tool to forward their personal agendas, as in Rome and Julius Caesar. They wished to keep him north of the Rubicon River, fighting the politicians’ war and gathering land and slaves. He returned, with the purpose of becoming Rome’s first emperor, since he lost all sense of patriotism and felt that the republic had fallen into decadence. Of course, he failed. Nonetheless, his successors, knowing better with time, succeeded, and the Roman Republic fell, creating the Roman Empire under Octavius.
When our generals feel that they have ultimate power, and sense that they are being used to promote political agendas rather than patriotism — as in Korea, Vietnam and now the Middle East — once they feel that the population of the United States is ripe and paying more attention to its “Twittering,” its “Facebooking” and its “texting” rather than what is going on with its politicians, the time will be ripe. When they have a “warrior class” that goes into battle for professionalism’s sake, rather than patriotism ... well, the writing is on the wall.
Hopefully, this will not happen in my lifetime.
The draft and conscription provide the ultimate training tool in the development of patriotism. If draftees learn anything, it would be what America is all about. They would learn responsibility and how to fit into society better. These things are ideals they fail to learn in school. Heck, history class is boring, right?
However, in our present volunteer force the children of military families will have their children following their footsteps and so on. Thus, creating a warrior class.
Not bad if you are a Spartan in ancient Greece. God Bless America!
Capt. David Gonzales (retired)