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Should military service be mandatory?

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Soviet cogitations: 3033
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 29 Nov 2004, 20:06
Party Bureaucrat
Post 06 May 2009, 06:49
If so, should both men and women be drafted? At what age? And for how long?
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Soviet cogitations: 6887
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 30 Nov 2007, 08:37
Unperson
Post 06 May 2009, 08:29
What country are we talking about? These sorts of things are typically rather contextual. If your population is small, and you must have a large and powerful army for fear of dangerous neighbors, you might have no choice.
banistansig1
Soviet cogitations: 3448
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 26 Jun 2006, 15:59
Ideology: Other Leftist
Party Bureaucrat
Post 06 May 2009, 19:15
Preferably no, but as TRL has already said, it may be necessary.
The moment one accepts the notion of 'totalitarianism', one is firmly locked within the liberal-democratic horizon. - Slavoj Žižek
Soviet cogitations: 6887
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 30 Nov 2007, 08:37
Unperson
Post 06 May 2009, 21:23
I would say preferably yes, for all males. But I come from a culture where males are considered to be soldiers, defenders, etc. So.... make what you will of it.
banistansig1
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Soviet cogitations: 865
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 07 Jan 2007, 06:42
Komsomol
Post 06 May 2009, 22:03
Quote:
I would say preferably yes, for all males. But I come from a culture where males are considered to be soldiers, defenders, etc. So.... make what you will of it.


Agreed. The opportunities for effective socialization through military conscription are extremely useful and (in addition to the obvious defensive advantages) should be utilized accordingly.
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Soviet cogitations: 4953
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 13 Feb 2008, 15:25
Ideology: Other Leftist
Politburo
Post 07 May 2009, 00:00
I support national service for both sexes. That doesn't necessarily mean military service however.
Soviet cogitations: 6887
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 30 Nov 2007, 08:37
Unperson
Post 07 May 2009, 01:27
I think to go further we need a specific example. Anyone have any in mind?
banistansig1
Soviet cogitations: 495
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 03 Mar 2008, 02:36
Komsomol
Post 07 May 2009, 13:55
Well I'd say in Great Britain there wouldn't be a call for it. National service, certainly, military service, certainly not. A huge amount of people just aren't cut out for the military, and a swollen military is a strain on the budget. Furthermore, draft dodging would become a serious problem and would require the state to be too much of an enforcer than a socialist state should be.
Soviet cogitations: 6887
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 30 Nov 2007, 08:37
Unperson
Post 08 May 2009, 03:49
You don't have to draft everyone. There are certainly health conditions and physical requirements. Alternative service for those who don't want to serve or aren't fit for military service is also an option. Finally draft dodging depends on social views towards the institution. But in general you may have a point, in regards to specifically the UK.
banistansig1
Soviet cogitations: 495
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 03 Mar 2008, 02:36
Komsomol
Post 08 May 2009, 14:05
Quote:
Finally draft dodging depends on social views towards the institution. But in general you may have a point, in regards to specifically the UK


This. I'm perfectly open to the idea that in other nations attitudes towards the military are more positive, et here, while the military is not exactly reviled by the majority of the population, there is also little enthusiasm for participation in the institution.
Soviet cogitations: 163
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 23 Jan 2009, 15:02
Pioneer
Post 08 May 2009, 14:55
I support a conscription for both sexes, transgendered, all creeds and religons. Public service should be respected, it should be an honor. I believe conscription could teach ideals, like unity and brotherhood, coming together to for the betterment of all. Has anyone read Kurt Vonneguts Player Piano Its about a society where if you dont have a high IQ and a doctorate your only choices are the Army or The recreation and reclamation corps (basically public works). I believe you should have say a four year conscription where you could mix and match between public service and and military service in one year increments. Additionally with the choice to stay on or goto a University for free. The down side to enforced conscription is a less professional fighting force. There can be two arguments to this one look at the Red Army during world war 2 they where virtually conscripts, many where heroic volunteers. THe red army had a high causlty rate throughout the war, more so in the early years, as the army got combat experience casualties dropped. Two a peace full nation doesn't need a professional military only an aggressive belligerent nation does. Right and wrong. If a small nation like Costa Rica is invaded and they only have a conscript army Im afriad a larger professional one will dominate it on the field of battle, resulting into a costly partisan war which is bad for people.
From what I remember about Norway when I was there for a military exercise they have conscription in order to be a citizen you have to do two years service. The unit i was with the they where mainly immigrants. I might be wrong about Norway, but thats what I remember them telling me.
Soviet cogitations: 6887
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 30 Nov 2007, 08:37
Unperson
Post 09 May 2009, 00:52
Conscripts do not mean worse trained. This is a correlation (as countries that draft are less likely to invest into training the troops) but not a causation. Soviet performance in Afghan was easily on the level of a completely volunteer force. However I think that for many larger countries a mixed professional and conscript force would be ideal, with professionals being the ones deployed to limited conflicts and in peacekeeping operations, while conscripts mainly get their training and would only be used in a major war.
banistansig1
Soviet cogitations: 163
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 23 Jan 2009, 15:02
Pioneer
Post 09 May 2009, 16:45
I really am not referring to training but the attitudes of the conscripts. Most will have discipline problems and cause low morale. Since in a volunteer unit in theory everyone wants to be there or at least nobody was forced into joining the military. Volunteer units would have higher morale and unit proficency. Until the national mood changed about serving the people, it will take a few conscription cycles to recieve the right attitude from conscripts.
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Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 21 Dec 2004, 23:53
Ideology: Marxism-Leninism
Philosophized
Post 13 May 2009, 19:10
Sholokhov hit the point I wanted to make, perhaps not military service but some sort of national service. Everyone should have some skill and knowledge of how to handle their lives and the lives of the community in times of panic. That should be the role of community organizations.
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Soviet cogitations: 23
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 11 May 2009, 19:37
Pioneer
Post 14 May 2009, 12:13
I think, that military service shoul be mandatory.
But the main part of the army must be proffessional.

For example, each young man, who is older than 18, has to serve at army several monthes(3-6).
During these monthes he acquires a profession (tanc driver, radioelictronic worker, paratrooper),
which can help him in future life. If he thinks, that army is his mission, he could continue serving
there as a professional.
User avatar
Soviet cogitations: 865
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 07 Jan 2007, 06:42
Komsomol
Post 14 May 2009, 19:52
Quote:
I really am not referring to training but the attitudes of the conscripts. Most will have discipline problems and cause low morale. Since in a volunteer unit in theory everyone wants to be there or at least nobody was forced into joining the military. Volunteer units would have higher morale and unit proficency. Until the national mood changed about serving the people, it will take a few conscription cycles to recieve the right attitude from conscripts.


But again, this confuses correlation and causation. Not to mention, volunteer armies in bourgeois countries don't necessarily have the proper "morale," - look at suicide rates among US occupation soldiers in Afghanistan, Iraq. In January 2009, deaths by suicide outnumbered deaths insurgents (can't recall if this was Afghanistan or Iraq). So obviously a volunteer-only military is no guarantee for quality morale.

Secondly, you're forgetting that economic conditions necessitate a lot of the reasons why people join volunteer services to begin with. Even if its a low percentage of recruits, these people don't *really* want to be there - they just had fewer options. If the choice is joining the military on the promise of potentially getting a college education - or being a cash register at the local 7/11...many will chose the former.

Thirdly, you're limiting the potential quality of your soldiers when you maintain a volunteer force. Look at the United States, people with exceptional skills are not joining the military en masse. Often, military service appeals to the lowest common denominators in society, at least in terms of intellect. Sometimes volunteer armies even lower their standards to include more people, but the young intelligentsia is nowhere present. A successful military must not only be composed of those who voluntarily want to sign up, it also must meet other qualitative objectives in order to make it a powerful force.

Finally, military service (vis-a-vis conscription) is important on the social, political and cultural fronts, too. It's a means for reigning in on the somewhat chaotic nature of many young people and breaking down their youthful ignorance which manifests itself as "resistance to authority." Inculcating a whole generaton of people through military conscription will certainly add benefits to the population, not hurt it.
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Soviet cogitations: 6887
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 30 Nov 2007, 08:37
Unperson
Post 14 May 2009, 22:05
Let me contest that last point. It's validity hinges on what kinds of conditions are in the military. The current Russian military, for example, is hardly something that is beneficial to those that serve.
banistansig1
User avatar
Soviet cogitations: 865
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 07 Jan 2007, 06:42
Komsomol
Post 14 May 2009, 23:12
Quote:
Let me contest that last point. It's validity hinges on what kinds of conditions are in the military. The current Russian military, for example, is hardly something that is beneficial to those that serve.


Very true; and thank you for qualifying that point.
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Soviet cogitations: 163
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 23 Jan 2009, 15:02
Pioneer
Post 15 May 2009, 02:53
Suicide rates amongst soliders is related from multiple combat tours in Iraq and Afganhsitan. Americas Vetrans health care system is broken. (I think they do this just so they can say a socailist health care system wont work) I was seen at the mental health clinic prevously, a year had lapsed since I last been. I called up one day asking to make an appointment with the shrink. They told me since its been so long since my last visit that I have to go to the emergency room and get a recommendation to see a shrink.
I would like to address the issue about Americas volunteer force. Yes there are people who join only for college money, or because 7-11 is a horrible job. There are also people who are really proficent in ther job and are extremly professional. News crews tend to capture the idiots, on the field of battle. There are some really professional people in the armed forces.
I still think everybody should serve thier society in some capacity. I am all for women in the military, I have seen women man M2 .50 caliber machine guns with no problems.
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Soviet cogitations: 1942
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 12 Jul 2005, 01:11
Party Member
Post 16 May 2009, 14:09
I think a military preperation class such as what the USSR had is highly useful. I think in the United States ROTC and a type of RETC would be useful in developing discipline and responsibility. Not sure if I'd support a mandatory draft though because then you'd need some type of exemptions which would get messy.
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