In a case of not realizing the knife in your back has your own fingerprints on it, the Army posted a rare public-facing document noting its end strength will drop to 445K (against 466K authorized) by the end of FY23 and noted that:
Only 23 percent of Americans aged 17-24 are qualified to serve due to a mixture of poor physical fitness, serious juvenile crimes, or bad ASVAB scores (which fell 9 percent with schools using remote learning during the overly long COVID shutdown).
And the fact that young Americans just don’t want to join.
The Army found three “gaps” are the reason:
Not noted is the fact that the country just came out of a 20-year morass in Afghanistan/Iraq that accomplished little but scarring two generations of Soldiers while hollowing out the reserves and Guard and increasing wait times at the VA by months, at the same time ROTC/JROTC is increasingly asleep at the wheel stateside, recruiting duty is seen by many as a bitter pill that has to be swallowed as its the only way to jump from JNCO to SNCO and actually making the Army a career, all the while toxic leadership is concentrating on meeting BS administrative goals so they can advance, all as the organization downshifts from being operational over the past two decades back to Micky Mouse garrison life. Then you throw the very spooky question marks of Ukraine and China out there, which isn’t going to get the purple-haired kids just interested in finding a way to pay for college off the bench, especially when they know they can get a student loan that will seemingly never have to be paid back.
But that’s just me.
Anyway, the feedback via the 850~ comments on the original post is enlightening.
I mean, I’m just gonna drop this GoArmy ad here:
Meanwhile, the Marines are smashing their retention goals.
So, contrast the above Army spot with this current Marines recruiting ad: