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  1. #1
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    Military Deserters

    With the volunteer Army I would have thought that there would be very few deserters. That is apparently not the case. Since the start of the Iraq war, hundreds of of U.S. soldiers have fled to Canada. The military isn't avidly pursuing many deserters, not does it seem to be harshly punishing those who turn themselves in.

    The number of deserters is far greater than what I would have guessed. According to the government about 3,300 deserted in 2006. The military seems to be taking the position that it is a waste of resources to actively track down the deserters.

    Link:
    Going AWOL: DETAILS Article on men.style.com



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    Re: Military Deserters

    I don't find that very surprising. There have been deserters ever since there has been war. It somewhat supports my contention in the morality thread that you might not be able to predict how you would react to a given situation until placed in it. (Not that I am condoning it, or providing an excuse for them)



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    Re: Military Deserters

    But don't you find the military's response to be surprising?

    I don't remember the military taking the same attitude towards deserters during the Vietnam War.



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    Re: Military Deserters

    Surprising, maybe. Realistic, probably. I would assume they would set some system in place to red flag a deserter should they show up again in the US, so that they can deal with the situation then.



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    Re: Military Deserters

    Service members who are caught or turn themselves in rarely face punishment harsher than minimal jail time.

    Link:
    Going AWOL: DETAILS Article on men.style.com

    And some deserters are openly flaunting their decision to desert:

    James Circello



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    Re: Military Deserters

    Being a deserter in an all-volunteer Army doesn't make much sense to me.

    I suppose there are still people who have no idea what the Army is all about, and are shocked, when they get in and figure what they do there.


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    Re: Military Deserters

    I suppose there are still people who have no idea what the Army is all about, and are shocked, when they get in and figure what they do there.
    Wouldn't you say it's difficult to know exactly what army life is like until you experience it? I have ideas, but I'm sure that the reality would be far different. I don't necessarily condone deserters, although I do agree that the army should focus their resources on battles that matter and not chasing Chuck across Canada because he doesn't want to fight anymore.



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    Re: Military Deserters

    Quote Originally Posted by herbiedoobie View Post
    Being a deserter in an all-volunteer Army doesn't make much sense to me.

    I suppose there are still people who have no idea what the Army is all about, and are shocked, when they get in and figure what they do there.
    I don't know what the statistics are but a portion of the deserters had already served in Iraq and were being redeployed. Certainly those individuals had an idea what the military was about.

    I started this thread because like you being a deserter in an all-volunteer Army didn't make sense to me either. Perhaps the volunteers didn't think that it was likely that they would be required to serve in a combat role? Or if they had already served in a combat role they didn't expect to be reassigned to another combat role?



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    Re: Military Deserters

    Quote Originally Posted by alaskaguy View Post
    I don't know what the statistics are but a portion of the deserters had already served in Iraq and were being redeployed. Certainly those individuals had an idea what the military was about.

    I started this thread because like you being a deserter in an all-volunteer Army didn't make sense to me either. Perhaps the volunteers didn't think that it was likely that they would be required to serve in a combat role? Or if they had already served in a combat role they didn't expect to be reassigned to another combat role?
    Maybe after being deployed and realizing that they were against this war they didn't want to go back. I understand that they are breaking the rules, and they may face punishment, but I don't blame them for deserting under those circumstances.

    Now if someone joined the Army today then deserted before being deployed, that is just stupid.



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    Re: Military Deserters

    Quote Originally Posted by superdorf View Post
    Maybe after being deployed and realizing that they were against this war they didn't want to go back. I understand that they are breaking the rules, and they may face punishment, but I don't blame them for deserting under those circumstances.

    Now if someone joined the Army today then deserted before being deployed, that is just stupid.
    I don't care if a service member is for or against the war. It's not their decision after they sign a contract with the military. Deserters, to me, are selfish people.



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    Re: Military Deserters

    Quote Originally Posted by usnclone View Post
    I don't care if a service member is for or against the war. It's not their decision after they sign a contract with the military. Deserters, to me, are selfish people.
    It used to be that National Guard members mainly served state-side and helped with disasters and things here in the USA. Now it seems they are activated and placed in the front lines. I don't remember the Guard being activated and placed in combat situations on the front lines before GW Bush became President. Now it seems as if our Guard members can see several tours of duty overseas. National Guard members signed up to be part-time military members who might be called up in emergency situations. It seems like now they are full time military when they join the National Guard.



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    Re: Military Deserters

    Quote Originally Posted by usnclone View Post
    I don't care if a service member is for or against the war. It's not their decision after they sign a contract with the military. Deserters, to me, are selfish people.
    So would you follow ANY order given to you by your commanding officer?

    I guess I couldn't be in the military... Which is funny because, like many people, after 9/11 I thought I could... Now, fighting a war in Iraq makes me realize I could never do it.

    I have so much respect and admiration for our service men and women, they are risking their lives, in this case though, it isn't for our freedom. I don't really know why they are risking their lives.



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    Re: Military Deserters

    Quote Originally Posted by superdorf View Post
    So would you follow ANY order given to you by your commanding officer?

    I guess I couldn't be in the military... Which is funny because, like many people, after 9/11 I thought I could... Now, fighting a war in Iraq makes me realize I could never do it.

    I have so much respect and admiration for our service men and women, they are risking their lives, in this case though, it isn't for our freedom. I don't really know why they are risking their lives.
    Well, that is your opinion, I think if you interviewed many service men and women, it wouldn't be theirs. Our basic strategy since 9/11 has been to eliminate any state support for terrorists, to prevent an even larger and more devastating attack.
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    Re: Military Deserters

    Quote Originally Posted by Cyclonepride View Post
    Our basic strategy since 9/11 has been to eliminate any state support for terrorists, to prevent an even larger and more devastating attack.
    Who are you referrring to when you use the term "Our". Is it the GWB administration?

    GWB's position towards Iraq has evolved with the passage of time;

    Initially the main allegation was that Iraq possessed WMD in violation of an agreement that Iraq had signed.

    And if you want to fast forward to the present, the current Iraqi government is so dysfunctional that I doubt that there is significant concern that it is supporting terrorists outside Iraqi borders.



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    Re: Military Deserters

    Quote Originally Posted by alaskaguy View Post
    Who are you referrring to when you use the term "Our". Is it the GWB administration?

    GWB's position towards Iraq has evolved with the passage of time;

    Initially the main allegation was that Iraq possessed WMD in violation of an agreement that Iraq had signed.

    And if you want to fast forward to the present, the current Iraqi government is so dysfunctional that I doubt that there is significant concern that it is supporting terrorists outside Iraqi borders.
    The tools that the administration has used to build political consensus have evolved, but I don't think you can look at my basic statement of strategy and imply that it has. And by "our", I mean the United States leadership in general, including the Pentagon.



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