Some of the warbloggers take umbrage -- in fact, they take all the umbrage -- to the term chickenhawk. Just because they were too young to serve in the last few wars, or declined to volunteer for the the ones they could have served in, is no reason to suggest that they shouldn't be writing furiously about somebody else's friends and family getting shot at.
Various sources, including the Mercury News, report:
U.S. TELLING THOUSANDS THEY MAY HAVE TO SERVE AN EXTRA YEAR
Mercury News Wire Services
WASHINGTON - The Defense Department is notifying more than 14,000 reservists that they may be required to extend their duty, to serve up to two years instead of one, in a move seen as a contingency for possible action against Iraq.
The action, the most extensive since the Vietnam War, affects about 4,800 Air Force reservists and about 9,200 members of the Air National Guard, said Commander Randy Sandoz, a Defense Department official.
[. . .] The call-ups are under what the military calls a ``partial mobilization,'' which was ordered by President Bush after the Sept. 11 attacks. During this, the president can activate up to 1 million reservists and Guard members to serve up to two years.
The last partial mobilization took place during the Persian Gulf War, but few, if any, served more than a year because the war ended so quickly, officials said. The Vietnam War had many reservists serving full two-year terms.
Now, since I got called up during Persian Gulf War I, I can say whatever the fuck I want. Convenient, no?
I was a student at the time, not unlike Ellen Feiss, only of legal age, you sick perverts. So I was actually making more money during the time I was in.
Lotta guys I was over there with were only in the Reserves so they'd have a full 20 years of service, and could retire with full benefits. These were older guys, with real careers and families. Some of 'em ran their own businesses, like our medic, and if you're thinking they were making anywhere near as much running around in the sandbox you haven't noticed what military pay is. People do not live on post because it's a shorter walk to muster; they do so because even with a housing allowance, they can't afford to live among civilians.
Yeah, there are laws requiring creditors to not give you too much shit because you've taken a huge pay cut, and employers (for those who weren't self-employed) were required to take you back if you lived. That still meant for a lot of hardship.
At this point, the chickenhawks would chime in about how these people knew the risks when they signed up. Um, no. Back then, at least, our enemy was the USSR (remember them?), and conventional wisdom was that in the event of a war, we'd all be fucked. You wouldn't have to worry about your construction business or medical practice idling for several months, because we were all going to be killed in a nuclear strike. Paradoxically, a larger enemy meant it was safer to be in the Reserves.
The other funny thing, for expansive definitions of funny, is that some guys had their contracts expire during the conflict. Oddly, they felt little compulsion to re-up. Equally oddly, the military basically said, "Sorry, can't afford to lose you. You're staying."
This really had a positive effect on morale.
They did let this one guy go home, after his house in rural [insert Southern state here] burned to the ground because the [volunteer] fire department had a long-ass drive to the place. That was sweet of them, I think.
Oh, and the guy who had a life-threatening allergic reaction to the perfectly safe drugs we were given. They let him go, too. So it wasn't all gloom and doom.
I can almost accept the warbloggers treating The Enemy as faceless and expendable -- remember how they were whining about not wanting to hear more about Afghan civilian casualties? -- but you'd think they'd treat our forces like human beings. And you'd be wrong.
I'm mostly talking enlisted, though. We were quite aware we ain't count for shit, but from the brass that was expected. These warblogger fucks, though. . . damn. How much you want to bet they're the ones who criticize the left for not supporting our troops or tying enough yellow ribbons around old oak trees?
Fuck the random lottery draft shit. They need to just fire up Google, see who's seriously enthused about invading other folks, and specifically get them to do it. I expect you'd see a rash of foot injuries.
And again I say: Pussies.
I said not to ask. . . turns out the unit I did my drills with was not, in fact, the unit I was actually in. So when NMCB 24 out of Redstone Arsenal, Alabama got the call, so did I in *cough* Chicago, Illinois. If I'd told 'em I lived in Shampoo-Banana, I'd have had to do drills with some group in Danville or something. Oddly, they didn't blink when I submitted the paperwork for education benefits because I was enrolled at UIUC. Internal communication not their strong point. Which is how they once gave me tickets for a flight to San Diego out of Midway that didn't even exist anymore, then told me they'd get me on a flight out of O'Hare (when I called from Midway to let them know). You ever drive from Midway to O'Hare? During Summer Road Construction season? Knowing that if you missed the flight, you'd be declared AWOL?
Ah, the military. They had the audacity to ask me why I didn't want to re-up.
Update: See, same message, but a picture is worth a thousand words. I am so surplus to requirements around here. . .