Counterrecruiter.net has been, and will continue to be, on a quick hiatus (not more than a month) until I complete some other projects here in Austin. When it returns, Counterrecruiter.net will be a community-oriented site with more user-generated and original content from counter-recruiters nationwide.
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Notice how I didn’t spoil it by titling the post ‘weekend humor.’
So right on…
Some information the recruiter probably won’t share with you. From Tom Philpott, writing in the Honoloulu Advertiser:
Talk about lousy timing. With President Bush’s popularity scraping bottom in opinion polls, with U.S. casualties rising in Iraq in a force surge that has stretched tours to 15 months, the Bush administration has said it “strongly opposes” key military pay and benefit gains tossed into the fiscal 2008 defense bill.
Initiatives the administration opposes include:
# A military pay raise for next January of 3.5 percent versus 3 percent endorsed by the White House.
# Lowering the age-60 start of reserve retirement annuities for reserve component members by the length of their future mobilizations.
# Expanding eligibility for Combat-Related Special Compensation to service members forced by combat disabilities to retire short of 20 years.
# Directing pharmaceutical manufacturers to provide the Department of Defense with same-price discounts for Tricare retail pharmacy network that are provided on medicines dispensed from base pharmacies.
The administration also grumbled that the Senate intends to block for another year Tricare fee increases for under-65 retirees and dependents.
The objections appear in a “Statement of Administration Policy” from the White House’s Office of Management and Budget delivered to Senate leaders as they opened floor debate on the defense authorization bill.
A day later, Senate Republicans, at White House urging, blocked amendments that would have shortened Iraq tours for U.S. ground forces and slowed the frequency of war deployments.
Not directly related to military recruitment per se, but a striking story. I don’t think most recruiters are honest about how the military treats conscientious objectors.
A veteran who spent 14 months in prison for filing a conscientious objector application against redeployment to Iraq has spoken out against the commutation of Scooter Libby’s sentence by President Bush.
“I was imprisoned for 14 months after trying to apply for conscientious objector status after seeing the reality of the Iraq war,” Kevin Benderman, who had to serve his sentence at a prison 3,000 miles from home, said.
Kevin Benderman had served as an army mechanic for 10 years when he developed moral and religious objections to the war in Iraq, after serving there in 2003, and refused to deploy there again. After seeing scenes of devastation in Iraq, and through his readings of both the Bible and the Qu’ran, Kevin Benderman filed an application for conscientious objector status on 28 December 2004.
He was then sentenced to 15 months’ imprisonment at a court martial.
“Homes were bombed, people lived in mud huts and drank water from the mud puddles,” Benderman wrote in his conscientious objector application. “I could not ignore the little girl standing by the side of the road with her mother. Her arm was burned to her shoulder, and she cried in pain. To be aware of the mass graves throughout the area that we were in, full of bodies of women and children and men, all who had died by the hand of war, maybe not our war, but war.”
His wife Monica Benderman, who organized a campaign to obtain her husbands released, also hit out at Bush’s action.
“Parole was denied to Kevin because he had not been ‘sufficiently rehabilitated.'”, she said. “What were they rehabilitating him from? Not wanting to go to war. During those 14 months Kevin would be sitting in a plastic chair getting shouted at; he was denied his mail at times, they tried to prevent his talking to his attorney and our congressperson. Meanwhile, Libby — who covered up the truth on issues of war that affect the lives of people like my husband — is going to walk away.”
Holy shit, hundreds of counter-counter-recruiters mobilized yesterday in “900 recruitment centers in 50 states.” Is this for real?
(CNSNews.com) – Ahead of Armed Forces Day, May 19, pro-military groups around the country Friday showed their support for military recruiters who they said “take the brunt of the attacks of the anti-war protesters.”
“Recruiters could do with a little bit of extra love,” said Kristinn Taylor, spokesman for Gathering of Eagles. “They are Americans. They are good, moral decent people, who are upholding the best values of our country and defending our country with their lives.”
Taylor was joined by Bill Dozier, assistant director of Veterans of Foreign Wars, at a recruitment office in Washington, D.C. He said supporters would show up at 900 recruitment centers in 50 states.
“The reason why we’re here is to show support for our troops,” Dozier told Cybercast News Service. “We’re here to appreciate those who are on the forefront.”
“Recruiters have really been getting it all around the country from the peace protesters,” Taylor said, calling the protesters “violent and anti-American.”
“Recruiters get attacked, their vehicles get torched, tires get burned, rocks get thrown through the windows,” he told Cybercast News Service. “The Pentagon plays it down, but it has been going on around the country.
“You’ve got anti-war groups that are organized and trying to keep recruiters out of high schools and off college campuses,” added Taylor. “They are playing the race card, and trying to say that minorities are being preyed upon to join the military out of desperation – which isn’t true. The military is a great career for anybody.”
Dozier said recruitment efforts are currently “much harder. Today it’s getting out of hand.”