News Tip: Bush to Reinstate the Draft! Men, Women and Students Ages 18-26 Eligible.

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Bush to Reinstate the Draft! Men, Women and Students Ages 18-26 Eligible.Pending legislation in the House and Senate (twin bills S 89 and HR 163) would time the program so the draft could begin as early as Spring 2005 — conveniently just after the 2004 presidential election. But the administration is quietly trying to get these bills passed NOW. See summary of bills at

Ironically, the bills were submitted in early 2003 by two democrats in attempts to deter the Bush administration from starting a war in Iraq. They were hoping that if voters who supported U.S. aggression abroad were confronted with the possibility that their own children or grandchildren might not have a say about whether to fight, many of these same voters might have a change of heart. This plan eliminates higher education as a shelter, would not exclude women and Canada is no longer an option to avoid military duty. (See related articles below)________________________________________________________________________ *The Draft

$28 million has been added to the 2004 Selective Service System (SSS) budget to prepare for a military draft that could start as early as June 15, 2005. SSS must report to Bush on March 31, 2005. The system, which has lain dormant for decades, will be ready for activation. Please see website: to view the SSS Annual Performance Plan – Fiscal Year 2004.

The Pentagon has quietly begun a public campaign to fill all 10,350 draft board positions and 11,070 appeals board slots nationwide. Though this is an unpopular election year topic, military experts and influential members of Congress are suggesting that if Rumsfeld’s prediction of a “long, hard slog” in Iraq and Afghanistan and a permanent state of war on “terrorism” proves accurate, the U.S. may have no choice but to draft.

Oiling up the draft machine? (November 5, 2003)

Congress brought twin bills, S. 89 and H.R. 163 forward this year, entitled the Universal National Service Act of 2003, “To provide for the common defense by requiring that all young persons [age 18–26] in the United States, including women, perform a period of military service or a period of civilian service in furtherance of the national defense and homeland security, and for other purposes.” These active bills currently sit in the Committee on Armed Services.

Dodging the draft will be more difficult than during the Vietnam era. College and Canada will not be options. In December 2001, Canada and the US signed a “Smart Border Declaration,” which could be used to keep would-be draft dodgers in. Signed by Canada’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, John Manley, and US Homeland Security Director, Gov. Tom Ridge, the declaration involves a 30-point plan which implements, among other things, a “pre-clearance agreement” of people entering and departing each country. Reforms aimed at making the draft more equitable along gender and class lines also eliminate higher education as a shelter. Underclassmen would only be able to postpone service until the end of their current semester. Seniors would only have until the end of the academic year before entering service.—————————————————————————————————–

*This article by Adam Stutz is from the “What’s Hot Off the Press” column of the newsletter of Project Censored, a media research group at Sonoma State University that tracks the news published in independent journals and newsletters. From these, Project Censored compiles an annual list (more than 20 years running) of 25 news stories of social significance that have been overlooked, under-reported, or self-censored by the country’s major national news media. The mission of Project Censored is “to educate people about the role of independent journalism in a democratic society and to tell The News That Didn’t Make the News and why.”

“What’s Hot Off the Press” includes student synopses of articles currently being investigated for inclusion in the next Project Censored report. For more info and/or to receive Project Censored’s newsletter, go to or email (censored) ————————————————————————————————————————- Please send this on to all the parents and teachers you know, and all the aunts and uncles, grandparents, godparents…. And let your children know — it’s their future, and they can be a powerful voice for change!

Please also write to your representatives to ask them why they aren’t telling their constituents about these bills — and write to newspapers and other media outlets to ask them why they’re not covering this important story.

Related Articles

Senator says US may need compulsory service to boost Iraq force (April 20, 2004)

Saturday, March 13, 2004Agency initiates steps for selective draftCongress shows little support for effort to draw skilled Americans

Saturday, November 8, 2003Talk of a draft grows despite denials by White HouseBy CHARLES POPESEATTLE POST-INTELLIGENCER WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT

Oiling up the draft machine? (November 5, 2003)

Medical workers face military draft (July 25, 2003)

Hollings Sponsors Bill to Reinstate Military Draft (Wednesday, January 8, 2003)

Rangel Introduces Bill to Reinstate the Draft (Wednesday, January 8, 2003)

For more information on the draft