As Mark Harriti of the Los Angeles Times reports:
WASHINGTON — Facing recruiting shortages brought on by the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan, the Army has decided to accept a greater number of recruits who score near the bottom of military aptitude tests, the secretary of the Army said Monday.Meanwhile, General William Odom, Ronald Raygun's director of the National Security Agency and former Assistant Chief of Staff for Intelligence (the Army's top ranking intelligence officer), has said he's come to the same conclusion so many of us reached before Iraq's invasion and occupation, saying:
Coming off a recruiting year in which the Army fell short of its goal of 80,000 active-duty soldiers, Army Secretary Francis J. Harvey announced that the Army would allow up to 4% of its recruiting class to be Category IV recruits — those who scored between the 16th and 30th percentile in the battery of aptitude tests that the Defense Department gives to all potential military personnel.
The Army until now allowed no more than 2% of its recruiting class to be from the Category IV level, fearing that letting too many low-achieving recruits into the Army might dilute the quality of the nation's largest military branch.
The continuing violence in Iraq has made the Army's annual mission to bolster its ranks especially difficult in recent months. The Army fell nearly 7,000 recruits short of its goal for the 2005 fiscal year, which ended Friday. Army officials have said that recruiters might be faced with an even bigger challenge during the current fiscal year.
"The invasion of Iraq I believe will turn out to be the greatest strategic disaster in U.S. history."
The ever-amazing Amy Goodman of Democracy Now! has an excellent interview.
And, putting the lie to the rosy predictions of Chief Pan Troglodytes, a suicide bomber penetrated the cozy confines of Baghdad's Green Zone, reportedly killing three.
The facade of the Project for a New American Century's delusional world is beginning to crumble, folks.
Quote of the Day: "When Prince Prospero's dominions were half depopulated, he summoned to his presence a thousand hale and lighthearted friends from among the knights and dames of his court, and with these retired to the deep seclusion of one of his castellated abbeys. A strong and lofty wall girdled it. This wall had gates of iron.
The Prince had the bolts of the gates welded which left neither means of ingress or egress to the sudden impulses of despair or of frenzy from within. The abby was amply provisioned....The prince had provided all the appliances of pleasure....buffoons...improvisatori...ballet dancers...musicians...beauty...wine. All these and security were within. Without was the Red Death."
--Edgar Allan Poe