Military’s Ongoing Recruiting Woes

| April 27, 2023

The Pentagon’s fiscal year 2024 budget is calling for 2,074,000 personnel in uniform. That number is some 13K fewer than was authorized last year but ~12K more than are currently serving. The disparity is blamed on a recruiting and retention environment adversely affected by a competitive job market, a dwindling pool of potential recruits, and a lack of interest in serving.

Based on Army surveys, candidates of military age do not see the Army as a safe place or good career path and believe they would have to put their lives on hold if they enlisted.

The Army, Navy and Air Force are all projecting to bring in numbers well short of recruiting targets. “Right now we’re doing better than we were doing,” Army Vice Chief of Staff Gen. Randy George stated.

Thanks for that, General. The military sees the problem and is taking measures to mitigate the situation.

Poetrooper sends.

GAO Finds Military Has No Plan for Ongoing Recruiting Crisis, the Real Question Is Do They Care?

By streiff

Military recruitment has hit lows not experienced since the end of the Vietnam War, even as America faces multiple national security challenges around the globe.

A Death Spiral
Defense Data for FY2023 show most military services are sucking swamp water.

Army: 69 percent of its goal
Navy: 60 percent of its goal.
Air Force: 87 percent of its goal.
Marine Corps: 100 percent of its goal.
Space Force: 100 percent of its goal.

This does not mean that, for instance, the Army is at 69 percent of its FY2023 goal. If that were the case with the fiscal year half finished, they’d be, in the words of my First Sergeant, “sh***ing in tall cotton.” The number means that they are at 69 percent of the number they need as of the date of the report to reach 100 percent on their mission by September 30. What you’re seeing is the leading edge of a bloodbath. Keep in mind that the only reason the Army is at 69 percent of its goal is to cut its end-strength from 476,000 in FY 2021 to 445,000 by the end of FY 2023. My colleague Bob Hoge covered the first glimmer of the coming disaster in Military Recruiting Numbers Lowest Since the Vietnam War.

By comparison, from FY 2019 through FY 2021, all military branches met their enlistment goals. It was in FY 2022 that the wheels started to come off, with the Army closing the year down 15,000 new soldiers or 25 percent of its target. All the other services met their goals.

Army Reserve: 58 percent of its goal.
Army National Guard: 90 percent of its goal.
Navy Reserve: 67 percent of its goal.
Air Force Reserve: 62 percent of its goal.
Air National Guard: 57 percent of its goal.
Marine Corps Reserve: 120 percent of its goal.

Deny Everything, Admit Nothing, Make Counteraccusations
Despite massive anecdotal evidence to the contrary — and I think that the evidence remains anecdotal by design because then the Defense Department doesn’t have to address it — the officials overseeing this conscious evisceration of the US military continue to blame young Americans rather than looking inside.
Out of Airspeed, Out of Altitude, Out of Ideas
The GAO has looked into the recruiting crisis and found that not only is the Pentagon failing, but it also doesn’t know why and may not even care.

Red State

Those Army surveys? They were conducted last spring and summer and ~2400 military age respondents took part. The Army discussed the general findings with The Associated Press but declined to provide transparency. Army spox stated licensing agreements with a private research firm limited the public release of some data collection details.

Like the type of survey conducted, questions posed, analysis methodology and results.

Not to fear, though. Army leaders note that there is literally no “hard data” indicating that the cause of the shortfall is the COVID-19 vaccine. Similarly, the claim is that available data also doesn’t support the idea that “woke-ism” and a focus on social justice is behind recruiting shortfalls. Major General Johnny Davis, commanding general of the U.S. Army Recruiting Command told Defense One, “While there are many things that prevent young Americans from enlisting in the military, including a lack of awareness about military life in general, ‘woke-ism’ is not one of them.”

This finding has been backed by the latest Army surveys, which queried some 2,400 youth between the ages of 18 to 25 on their attitudes toward the service.

Well there you have it. Thanks, Poe.

Category: Big Pentagon, DD-214, Guest Link

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“While there are many things that prevent young Americans from enlisting in the military, including a lack of awareness about military life in general, ‘woke-ism’ is not one of them.”

You sure that’s a hill you want to die on, General Davis? 🙄 

Amateur Historian

How about the bigger hill of forcing recruits and those already serving to take the jab, especially after 2 out of the 3 primary shot brands being recently yanked from use by the FDA.

Amateur Historian



Um, AH, looks pretty clear to ol’ Poe that the general self-selected his hill… 🤔 

USMC Steve

And the third was artificially declared good to go minus any, any at all, of the FDA required testing process. Meaning it isn’t.


C’mon, we all know the answers…
Orange Man Bad!!!
Men can have periods
What is a woman?

Veritas Omnia Vincit

He’s not wrong though, the military can’t match the pay or benefit packages of an economy where all the baby boomers are leaving the workforce to retire and for the first time in the nation’s history there are more good jobs with good salaries than there are people to fill them.

In a nation where we’ve become more selfish and self centered than ever what makes anyone think that “service” in any form carries any cache whatsoever to a young person seeking that entry level workforce position?

We have a society that’s trained everyone to “take care of you first because no one else will” and we wonder why we have a shortage of nurses and doctors, never mind military personnel?

The military can’t compete for the 23% of people who can qualify for waivers on the basis of pay or benefits, all they can hope to do is appeal to the sense of service to nation, and that’s a losing battle with a society that no longer values service beyond self serving platitudes.


Salesmanship 101. Don’t alienate 69% of your potential customers. I’d hate to be in the recruiting business these days, trying to sell the military to any straight, white males.

I’m shoring up the North Wall, are y’all getting your blade of grass hardened?


Time to break out the ghillie suit and become the blades of grass.

From where I sit the score is thus:
Rebels – 1.5 (half game for 1812, War of)
King’s men – 1

Anytime they’d like to get the ol’ board back out, some’vus have been studying…

“Sarge! You shoulda been there…and just like that, the hills started singing Merle Haggard.”

guerrillas GA to ME.jpeg

Need one of these verifiers for Ozark guerillas, too… 👊 


And the Ciprière irregulars. Those in the bayou need love too!


Don’t forget them good ol’ flatland boys in them old cotton fields back home


crap. is this…?

Last edited 1 year ago by Roh-Dog

YES! Maybe we’ll be that Mysterious Way that He works His Wonders…to behold.


Ours is not to question, but to take All Commands from The Tower and watch our lanes!

You wanna get your hackles up?
Read this crap.

Breathe, relax, aim, squeeze.


You left out the other “s,” —sight. Don’t check your sight picture before you “squeeze,” and the others may not matter.


There is a number of these informative acronyms, some include a second S as you point out. I’ve also seen ‘slack’ as the second to last S.

Being an expert grunt I’d be inclined to include ‘snack’, ‘swear’, or ‘switch to burst/auto’ myself.



The Left wants a draft, and this is all in service of that.

The leftists who go to college get the “nice” indoctrination.

Lots more folks go yo, and stay in, college for decedent’s. Also to earn “essential” designatons, thusy draft proof. Colleges make boo-coo bucks. Donks get thee donations. Also sell the deferments.

Anyone else, especially conservatives, get drafted, and thus indoctrinated on the not-nice plan. Any resistance is punished. The really stubborn get BCDs and life as a convicted felon.(no guns or votes, either)

Mark my words. It’s coming.


Deferment not decedent.

And just wow that got mangled..

Guess I am off to the gulag, comrades.


“Colleges make boo-coo bucks”

Colleges make Boo Hoo cucks….(my edit.) 

Last edited 1 year ago by ChipNASA

I would like to know the names of these people that want a draft.


No one eh? Kind of what I figured.


There was a lot of talk about draft registration for women. But who really believes that draft registration is about the draft anymore? In June it will be 50 actual years since the last person was drafted. During that time the US has been at war almost continuously.

They may as well call it the Federal People registration service.


I’m your huckleberry.


What? No immediate response? Cat got your tongue?


Bring it. Show me “The Left” that wants that draft. I do know of one, kind of a lesser ran unknown, since he is most things liberals don’t like. Not really feeling a groundswell of support from one guy who isn’t even a pol.

Last edited 1 year ago by 5JC

“Bring it. Show me…”

Show you what? I gave you what you asked for;

“I would like to know the names of these people that want a draft.”

If I recall correctly from past discussions, there are also a couple of other folks here who agree, but hey probably have a higher tolerance for uncalled for snark.

You can wiggle and squirm all you want, but you can’t change what you said.

You figured wrong. Be a mensch and own up to it.


Heinlein had it right, service guarantees citizenship.


Not “Fascist” when left/libtards do it (for “the greater good,” you know) of course.

Last edited 1 year ago by Anonymous

Make all those nice confused young people who can’t even tell if they’re boys or girks without being told crush evil “racist” conservatives for free room and board, yup.
comment image

Last edited 1 year ago by Anonymous
AW1 Rod

You reap what you sow, woketard morons. This is an absolutely self-inflicted wound.


Well, no wonder the Army is sucking hind tit when it comes to recruiting. The current CG of USAREC can’t even get his NDSM count squared away. / s

The Brotherhood weeps.

President Elect Toxic Deplorable Racist SAH Neande

The Left wants a draft, and this is all in service of that.”
Wasn’t the Left screaming to get rid of the draft during (and after) the ‘Nam war?


The Left likes to invent things that let them play savior.

Just watch.


I think this is more of a response to our catastrophic withdrawal from Afghanistan, a terrible national leader, and the ongoing war in the Ukraine which everybody thinks we’re going to get involved fighting in.

AT1 ret

So far every Navy recruiter I delt with in the last 2 years gave ZERO shits unless it need no effort on their part and even then they could be barely bothered. So that low number does not surprise.


And now this:

“Biden Energy Secretary Doubles Down On Electrifying US Military’s Vehicle Fleet By 2030: ‘We Can Get There’

“Department Of Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm said Wednesday that she supports efforts from the Biden administration to require the U.S. military to implement an all-electric vehicle fleet by 2030, telling lawmakers that she believes “we can get there.”

“Granholm’s remarks came during a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing following questions from Sen. Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, who asked the Biden administration official whether she supports the military’s adoption of an “EV fleet by 2030.”

“I do, and I think we can get there, as well,” Granholm said. “I do think that reducing our reliance on the volatility of globally traded fossil fuels where we know that global events like the war in Ukraine can jack up prices for people back home… does not contribute to energy security.”

“I think energy security is achieved when we have homegrown, clean energy that is abundant like you see in Iowa,” Granholm added. “We think we can be a leader globally in how we have become energy independent.”

“Last February, the Army unveiled a plan to tackle issues surrounding climate change, including the establishment of an electric vehicle fleet, as well as the reduction of the branch’s greenhouse gas emissions.”

The plan, titled “Climate Strategy” calls for the service to cut its emissions by 50% by 2030 from 2005 levels and reach net-zero emissions by 2050. Additionally, the strategy aims to establish an “all-electric light-duty non-tactical vehicle fleet by 2027” and an “all-electric non-tactical vehicle fleet by 2035.”

RGR 4-78

Bye, Bye up armor.


Posting tomorrow. I scheduled it yesterday. 😀


Note that they say non-tactical. Simply replacing cars and buses is pretty easy.



This came out in 2022:

“U.S. Military Wants Its Vehicles to Go Electric — With Detroit’s Help”–vehicles-to-go-electricwith-detroits-help

“The Pentagon also wants to electrify its tactical vehicles — not just to combat climate change, but to achieve operational benefits as well, Hicks noted.”

“Gamble said the Army is at an “inflection point” for the tactical wheeled vehicle and combat vehicle fleets, largely because of technologies that have emerged from the commercial industry.”

“The initial push will be for hybrid-electric drive, or HED, because “full electrification for our complex weapon systems at the forward edge of the battlefield is a goal that we don’t believe that currently our technology will support,” Gamble said.”

“The main roadblock to full electrification is recharging in austere environments.”

“How are you actually going to power these vehicles if you’re talking about a deployment far from home?” Burke asked. “You can’t run them off a grid if you’re on a battlefield, so … until you have an answer to that question, you’re not ready yet.”


Just imagine an AP-T or AP-I round hitting the average Lithium battery pack.


I’d prefer not to, but clearly the inmates are running the asylum. This is even more boneheaded than the Army’s plan for tactical, portable nuclear power plants. The only good thing that came out of THAT boondoggle was the Prime Power battalion. However, I think the Soldiers themselves and the people in my industry saw far more benefit from that 12P MOS than the Army ever did. Those folks can walk out of the Army the day they ETS and walk into a job making over $200K per year.


Doubt it could be worse than hitting the ammo storage.


We’ll get local livestock to pull them.


Shouldn’t there be a diesel generator in-tow for recharging?


Chicoms we sell us batteries while we’re fighting them, sure.


This is a little dated, from the summer of 2022, some of the reasons cited for not wanting to serve include the possibility of injury or death, or developing PTSD/psychological problems. It also doesn’t help that the pool of people qualified to apply for enlistment is shrinking.

These young whippersnappers have also been brought up in a different world, with different expectations, from what we were subjected to back in the 20th Century.

Russia v USA military recruiting.jpeg

“pool of people qualified”

What struck me out of the linked article is that only 23% of the available people are qualified to enlist in any of the services without some type of waiver.


Certain conditions such as asthma, obesity, autism, ADHD, diabetes and a few others that are disqualifiers have shown huge double digit percentage sometimes triple digit percentage increases in the last 20 years and even more in the last 30 – 40 years.

A lot of it has to do with a steady diet of sugar, Canola Oil, and white flour.

Last edited 1 year ago by 5JC
USMC Steve

There should be NO disqualifiers any further. If the sexual deviants possessing by the book mental abberations/illnesses are qualified, so are those other assholes. The fat weak ones can be starved while having their asses PT’ed off, for example.


I thought I read that only 12 % of young adults qualify for service without some waiver.


So… our tax dollars get thieved from us, under threat of force, to conduct a ‘survey’, to which we are NOT allowed to know what they asked, nor what the answers were… so these pathetic losers can hide the data that makes them look like the retarted, weak and ineffectual twats they is?

And these are some of the same morons we entrust with our safety, and coincidently enough, are the same that would spank us if We, say, tax revolted, or something, hypothetically, allegedly, in Minecraft?

Yeah, so scared

The few, and I stress FEW adults that are still in those institutions need to walk into the offices of mealymouthed milquetoast ‘leaders’, slap them in the face with The Constitution and tell them, “Follow that, or have an accident. Your choice”.

(also retarted, apple dictionary wanted me to change that word as it is no longer in the fucking dictionary according to our technofascist overlords. Cute.)

Hey Penta-going-going-gone, (see below)

check thyself.jpeg

I think it should be “thee” instead of “ye” since you used “thyself”…we’ll need a ruling from the judges. But, while we wait, here’s a pleasant little ditty that is most apropos:


Hey man, I’m just spreading memes like Easy-E spreadin’ for record execs. I don’t speak no mothafukken ol’ englush!

Who knew the ‘tangCPT was reppin’ Wesside?!


But you drink you some Old English, right?




You can take a cracka out tha ‘hood…

More unites us than divides us, and I’ll tip a four-oh to that shit anydamnday.

Last edited 1 year ago by Roh-Dog

I make it a point to dig up the original songs that were sampled by these rap artists. Some true gems that you find. Kinda like this one:

If nothing else, Cube has some taste regarding old-school R&B!


I have a playlist dedicated to some of my favorite songs (not just hiphop) and the samples from which the artist drew inspiration.

Most good hiphop has its roots in good R&B. To that point, from Cube’s release in ’93 from the Isley Brothers’ “Footsteps in the Dark” is 16 years.

Here is the list of top R&B songs of 2007:

“Irreplacable” by Beyonce
“Promise” Ciara
“You” by Lloyd feat. Lil Wayne
“Lost Without U” by Robin Thicke
“Buy U a Drank (Shawty Snapping’)” by T-Pain feat. Yung Joc
“When I See U” by Fantasia
“Let It Go” by Keyshia Cole feat. Missy Eliott and Lil’ Kim
“Bed” by J. Holiday
“No One” by Alicia Keys

Not a huge source of feeder-material there, ergo, to quote the urbane lyrical scholar Nas, “Hip Hop is Dead”.


No doubt. It took me a while, but I found this one a couple years ago:

Similar timeframe…Isaac released it in ‘74 and the Getto Boys came out with “Mind’s Playin’ Tricks on Me” in late ‘90/early ‘91.


Good one! Isaac Hayes is way under appreciated…

And then you have Rza’s constant go-to

Charmers’ 1967 song “As Long As I’ve Got You” featured on the Wu’s 36 Chambers in “C.R.E.A.M.” from ’93 and Gza’s Liquid Swords song “I Gotcha Back” in ’95.

90’s hiphop is best hiphop.

Last edited 1 year ago by Roh-Dog

*Charmels. I blame the equipment.

I didn’t know with “As Long As I’ve Got You” that Isaac Hayes has a producer credit!

You could just ‘borrow’ that whole man’s work and be set with samples FOR LIFE!

Last edited 1 year ago by Roh-Dog

Isaac was writing and producing long before he was releasing his own albums. He wrote quite a few Sam & Dave songs including “I Thank You”, “Hold On, I’m Comin’”, and “Wrap It Up”. He was kind of the Stax Records in-house composer/producer/session man back in the 60’s. Even if he didn’t write it for Stax artists, he would either produce it or play on it, often jamming with the Stax house band, also known as Booker T. and the MG’s.


Looks like I’m dip diving into even more Stax today.

Thanks for that!

Stax’s sister label Volt recorded this (below) with Hayes, B.T.&t M.G.s doing the back up to Mister Redding’s angelic voice.

Later used as a sample for “Otis” by Kanye West feat. Jay-Z.


FY 2022…gee, what happened then?

And I’ve already told my son not to join. That should tell you something right there.


Same here. Looks like it ends at four generations.

Last edited 1 year ago by Anonymous
USMC Steve

I agree with them. Look at the for the most part poor excuse of an eligible pool they have to work with. Self absorbed, undisciplined and unprincipled, and the vast majority of them would not be both physically and mentally capable of serving satisfactorily in the military. They won’t even get jobs because they want everything given them without effort and such. The woke culture and that nonsense also play a part, as does the fact that any time we have socialist dems in power, we are perceived as weak and thus significantly more likely to be screwed with by other countries, and the smart ones as well as the conservative ones aren’t going near the military.

Veritas Omnia Vincit

Right, it’s all the fault of wokeism…not the reality of a job market where the starting pay average for no-skill/low-skill entry level position sits around $20/hr in a lot of urban markets…if a kid can make $40,000/yr working forty hours a week to start and doesn’t have to deal with basic training or and military schools for MOSs ….how long does it take to get there in the military? 5 or 6 years of dealing with the military and its’ largely uncaring work systems and labyrinthine personnel rules? Smart kids can make $40k a year to start, really smart kids can make a fuck ton more…the military offers nothing of value in that regard as the working conditions typically suck at the start, the pay sucks, and benefits aren’t that great, and despite the nonsense about “Valuing Their Sacrifice” nobody in the civilian sector gives a flying fuck about veterans beyond thanking them for their service which is more about making the civilian feel better about themselves than it is about any actual gratitude for a veteran’s service.

Also the widely reported disgusting conditions at base housing locations for enlisted personnel aren’t a very attractive recruiting point.

That 23% of non-waiver-needed people who qualify are also very likely to be among the best 23% of performers athletically and academically…which means they’re already in demand in the private sector.

For the first time in our nation’s history we have more good jobs than people (good or bad) so the military isn’t in a competitive position on any level.

The military is in direct competition with the private sector for the 23%, and the military can’t offer anything to match the private sector’s benefit and salary packages to smart entry-level young people. That’s the reality regardless of who likes it or who doesn’t like it.


So, I’m still serving, in the NG these days. I have over 35 years all together (AD and NG). I want to stay another 5 years if my body will hold up and cooperate. I had to go through an SRP a few weeks ago and my BP was ridiculously high. I was worried for a minute, but then I thought to myself, “I’ll just bet I’m safe and won’t get put out with the recruiting problems the US Military is currently facing.

Green Thumb

If “woke-ism” is not one of them, they damn sure keep mentioning it.

I mean, who the fuck wants to be stationed at Fort Gregg-Adams?

They whiffed that one.