A few thoughts on a military draft, which I oppose for several reasons:

First:

The smaller a nation’s armed forces, the less the temptation to go to the use of force prematurely.

Second:

The fewer of our citizens who experience military training, the fewer who have been socialized into thinking that war is a legitimate activity.

Third:

A universal draft would legitimize the idea of women at war, and deprive us of those citizens who by dint of cultural and genetic evolution are most likely to resist the further militarization of our society.

Fourth:

If the armed forces are desperate for recruits, a dash of unemployment is easily arranged.

Fifth:

One of the few virtues of military service is the acquisition of some useful skills, but there are more economical and civilized alternatives.

Singer is a professor of Political Science at the University and specializes in international politics, military policies and war. He served in the U.S. Navy in World War II and the Korean War.

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