Thursday, 3 June 2004

Will There Be A Draft? What Can You Do About It?

As the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq drag on year after year, military tours of duty and reserve call-ups are extended, and enlistment declines, more and more people are beginning to wonder how soon the Pentagon will run out of “volunteers”, and turn to a draft.

I’ll be leading a discussion this Sunday morning, 6 June 2004, 9-11 a.m., on Will There Be A Draft? What Can You Do About It? , as part of the Reclaim the Commons events in San Francisco.

Teenagers, their parents, and health care workers (male and female, of all ages, who will probably be the first to be drafted) are especially encouraged to come join the discussion at the “Reclaim the Commons” Convergence Center, 960 Howard Street (between 5th and 6th Streets, 2 blocks south of the Powell Street BART/MUNI Metro station).

It’s sponsored by the Radical Family Collective, which is also coordinating a variety of other events at the Family Room throughout “Reclaim the Commons”.

If the draft is brought back, who will be called up? Probably health care workers first, male and female, of all ages, but young men and women might eventually be drafted as well. According to one military doctor, writing in a 2004 medical journal article that appears to be an apology for the views of the Selective Service Slavery System:

A physician draft is the most likely conscription into the military in the near future…. Currently, this [“special skills”] mission is only for health care personnel, but in the future it is forseeable it may include linguists, environmental engineers, computer specialists, and other professions.”

What choices will you have if you are drafted? Can you go to Canada? Are you a conscientious objector? What if you’re not? If you resist, how is the government likely to respond? What can we do if our friends, lovers, children, and comrades are drafted? How can you resist, if you have already “volunteered”?

After the U.S. military was driven out of Vietnam in 1975, the antiwar movement— including many forms of resistance— forced an end to the draft. When draft registration was reinstated in 1980, massive resistance and the failure of the government’s attempts at intimidation through show trials of registration resistance organizers forced the government to abandon enforcement of the draft registration law, and no one has been prosecuted for draft or registration resistance since 1987. So we know that draft resistance has the power to stop the draft.

But are we prepared to resist the next attempt to bring back the draft? This workshop will attempt to start that discussion.

[Addendum, 6 June 2004: Updated links and resources including background reading, current news updates, and printable leaflets.]

Link | Posted by Edward on Thursday, 3 June 2004, 08:41 ( 8:41 AM)

I think the draft is the best thing the goverment could ever do. It would get some of those dopeheads and people who dont want to work off the streets. It would definatly make better people out of them. it also would help protect our country. Phillip

Posted by: phillip, 20 December 2006, 04:26 ( 4:26 AM)

The draft is a bad idea. And the goverment don't want "dopeheads". They can get drugs over there easyers and cheaper. If people don't work or don't want to work, then good for them. I don't think WAR would make a better person out of them. Makeing people killers. Its all about oil. And bush is a joke.

Posted by: omb420, 22 December 2006, 04:56 ( 4:56 AM)

A draft would be a horrible mistake to support a horrible war. In WWII, there was a legitimate cause for fighting and a legitimate need for the draft. Today, no country should ever need to draft, and ideally (though probably not possibly) no country should need a military.

Posted by: kepler511, 11 January 2007, 20:36 ( 8:36 PM)

The war is a frequently, increasingly, timely issue. There is no one person, or persons to stop this war that was chooses for us. The US government has to deny the fact that there is a war for "resources" because they can not tell the American public that we need OIL in order to keep our economy alive. People do not see that this war is necessary until we are able to formulate a plan to create a say haven to a cheaper or more efficient way for paying for resources. I am an 18 year old child waiting for the draft to come to me, I am not going to go to a recruiter and ask for my sign up, no sir. I am waiting for the right time when there isn't enough rotation between the soldiers and medical doctors. Then my time will come, my choice is not in my hand, in fact: it is in the American publics hand to choose weather they auto having a war or not, and it was our spoiled inconsiderate gratitude to the world that we are not in piece time, but at war. Please understand what I've said is FACT - there is no stopping a war when there is not a way to supply our country with the necessary needs for the American people.

Posted by: Anonymous, 3 August 2007, 14:44 ( 2:44 PM)
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