Author Topic: Should the military service be mandatory?  (Read 21731 times)

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Just Lance

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Re: Should the military service be mandatory?
« Reply #15 on: March 02, 2014, 03:32:55 PM »
Well other than it being in "Oh so peaceful" Europe, there were civilian casualties due to fire of lethal ammunition without following a protocol occurred.
The mass panic is a mass panic and I would like to see many people keeping their calm being rational and using common sense when suddenly they pop a couple of rounds into a crowd. That usually escalates into a panic and confusion not to mention a well known factor of "crowd intelligence" when peoples are swayed by the behaviour of the crowd.
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Eli

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Re: Should the military service be mandatory?
« Reply #16 on: March 02, 2014, 05:11:28 PM »
Miss Nile, I guess we have to agree to differ. You see some things as honorable while I don't.
But when it comes to war, I guess we as the people living in such countries can do what we can to prevent a war. And I don't see it as a very distant dream to achieve that, I believe I played my role alongside other people to at least delay a possible war in my country.
And when it comes to sexism, I think religion plays a major role in discrimination against women. Even though it is true that discrimination against women in a certain religion can be rooted to the culture of the people living in the region where that religion originates from.

Just Lance, I don't think you are being fair in your arguments. I never mentioned a "Oh so peaceful" Europe, I said it seems impossible to see "many" european countries which fought during the world wars to start a war with each other again.
I did not say "all" european countries and I did not even say "most" european countries.
While I was writing that, countries like Germany and France came to my mind, not the Ukraine that I was following its news at the moment I was writing my post.
BTW, I'm aware of the Prague Spring in your country and the fact that it ended when Soviet Union and members of the Warsaw Pact invaded your country, then known as Czechoslovak Socialist Republic. I know about the Velvet Revolution and the fact that Czech Republic and Slovak Republic are the results of the country's dissolution a few years after the revolution.
I actually sympathized reading "Audience", "Protest" (Maybe I read all the Vaněk plays written by Havel, I'm not sure) and "Garden Party" scripts.
I'm not claiming that I'm well informed about the region, but I'm not as uninformed as you seem to see me.

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Re: Should the military service be mandatory?
« Reply #17 on: March 02, 2014, 06:13:31 PM »
Well other than it being in "Oh so peaceful" Europe, there were civilian casualties due to fire of lethal ammunition without following a protocol occurred.
The mass panic is a mass panic and I would like to see many people keeping their calm being rational and using common sense when suddenly they pop a couple of rounds into a crowd. That usually escalates into a panic and confusion not to mention a well known factor of "crowd intelligence" when peoples are swayed by the behaviour of the crowd.

While I understand where you are coming from here I think it's difficult to gauge whether or not the effect of firing live rounds into a crowd would be different if mandatory enlistment existed. A crowd by it's very nature is incohesive and it doesn't take much to cause mass confusion and panic, like you said.
The issue here is that even if someone has gone through basic training they are only going to be a single basically trained individual in a large group of basically trained individuals, as there is no real command structure it would take far more than this to get the crowd to act as one disciplined unit - there were even some defected police and military members in the protest crowds, and whilst they may have outperformed their lesser trained counter-parts when it came to blows, the end result was still the same as the average experience and organisation of the crowd was still far lower than that of the riot police and sharpshooters.

As far as I know it is only in the past few years that mandatory enlistment has been considered for removal from the Ukraine so I expect most of the people in the crowd probably already had some form of basic training. The reason it did not help was because of the lack of organisation due to a lack of chain of command once in a fight - the members of the crowd would require far more experience than standard national service to avoid disorganisation, panic and ultimately a rout.

Crowds like this are a lot like Gauls in a sense that they were organised up until the point of a melee breaking out as they did not have a link between the warlords and the main fighting body. Likewise in protests, they may have protest leaders and seem well ordered but when a riot breaks out it escalates out of control rapidly as no one is there to pass on, or possibly even give, orders - as shown in the Ukraine recently.

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Re: Should the military service be mandatory?
« Reply #18 on: March 02, 2014, 09:14:15 PM »
Well other than it being in "Oh so peaceful" Europe, there were civilian casualties due to fire of lethal ammunition without following a protocol occurred.
The mass panic is a mass panic and I would like to see many people keeping their calm being rational and using common sense when suddenly they pop a couple of rounds into a crowd. That usually escalates into a panic and confusion not to mention a well known factor of "crowd intelligence" when peoples are swayed by the behaviour of the crowd.

It's peaceful now because Europeans have been killing each other for a very, very long time. When the last two most destructive wars Europe experienced were just two decades from each other and Europe hasn't experienced another one that put it back to the stone age again since 1945, yeah, Europe IS peaceful. It's a historical comparison.

And the military training wouldn't have made a difference due to said crowd intelligence. Now if the protesters were all were armed, uniformed, and had a clear command structure, it would. But that's not a protest, that's a standoff. You don't defuse a tense situation by escalating it.

That was a protest which escalated over the course of a few months and turned violent, it seems like Russia are getting involved too now - though I can speculate why, I don't know the real reason for it. However, I don't see what your point is there.

Non-ethnic Russian Ukrainians want Ukraine to be closer to the EU. Russian Ukrainians and the deposed Russian Ukrainian president want to be closer to Russia. WIP agreement to get closer with EU got scrapped in favor of economic deals with Russia. Things got bad. Russia is there to supposedly "protect the Russian minority", especially those in Crimea. That and the Russian military bases in Crimea, namely the Black Sea Fleet in Sevastopol.
« Last Edit: March 03, 2014, 04:46:02 AM by Question Math »

A Fat Kid

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Re: Should the military service be mandatory?
« Reply #19 on: March 02, 2014, 11:01:18 PM »
Just so you guys know, there isn't a need for anyone in my country to know how to use a firearm.

Because there are no firearms.

Here, the possession of arms carries a death sentence, and you cannot buy a gun or get a license to own one. The only people who carry arms in public are the police and the military.

The local government likes to repeat that mandatory military service exists due to the small population and hence small professional army. It's basically a manpower boost, to have the civilian population ready to take up arms if anything broke out.

You don't even need all of them to run. Enough of them go, and the entire command structure breaks down. As for order, discipline and respect, there are other places to learn those. Parents, school, uniformed groups. I've yet to gain in any of these areas since I joined.

Frankly, I'd say they're deluded. This country is wealthy, and many families have properties overseas. If a war became imminent, people will be running with their families and deserting their posts. Foot soldiers, officers, everything. Why stay and defend your family from a threat, and possibly fail, when you can all run to safety?
« Last Edit: March 02, 2014, 11:07:35 PM by A Fat Kid »

Thunderbird

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Re: Should the military service be mandatory?
« Reply #20 on: March 06, 2014, 04:31:45 PM »
This is an interesting topic, because there are wast cultural differences, so in our international Freebirdia we are bound to have a lot of different opinions.

Of course it has to be. At least in my opinion.
I disagree with this.

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Sure, it teaches respect, discipline, order and safety but other than that,
So can a lot of other duties.

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it teaches you the morals of the importance of your country, your home and builds within you a meaning of special love and sacrifice for your people and flag.
This has a really bitter-sweet taste, while it gives the positive effect of solidarity it can also go very wrong. It can make you feel superior to people from other countries. Well, we have some bad memories of that in Germany.

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Consider that the country suddenly goes into war and needs to recruit more men for its forces, at least those who'd been through it before wouldn't be completely clueless about weapons and how things work. In the very least, it would save time and effort in the time of need because you'd have previously-trained soldiers, you wouldn't need to teach them all over again.
People that learned some basics 5 years ago would be merely cannon fodder. At least in more developed countries future wars will not be decided by who has the most basic soldiers.

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I know that it's a hassle for most men to have 1 or 2 years of their life obligatory into the military service, and some, if not at all, would rather do something else more useful to them in that time, but really, one year or two isn't that much if it could save your country one day.

Just my two cents. :3

War isn't the only danger, you know?
Teaching people other stuff for 1-2 years could also save the country.
How about 1 year learning about how to deal with a pandemia?
Or how to grow your own food?
Or how about teaching them basic health care for 1 year?
Also why should only men do this?

I could imagine a lot of stuff that would be more useful for the country than military service.
« Last Edit: March 06, 2014, 04:38:56 PM by Thunderbird »
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Merlandese

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Re: Should the military service be mandatory?
« Reply #21 on: March 06, 2014, 09:50:37 PM »
I sometimes harbor this idea in my head that if the US had mandatory military service, it would mean that every single type of person would be exposed to the innards of the process. Hypothetically (and optimistically), you'd end up with a military service that is more in tune to the thoughts and wants of the entire country, rather than be crafted from this small section of civilians that are the "type" to enjoy armed service.

I think of it because oftentimes I'll meet a person who is surprised I was in the military and said something like, "I could never join because of [insert belief]." And that's cool. But then I wonder what would happen to the military if all of these people who tell me this WERE to join. Would it make the military better?

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Re: Should the military service be mandatory?
« Reply #22 on: March 07, 2014, 07:04:58 AM »
But then I wonder what would happen to the military if all of these people who tell me this WERE to join. Would it make the military better?

Hell no! It's not a question of sheer numbers. Usually, when people are forced into something, they're not gonna be too happy about it. And if people are angry at country X, I'm sure they're not gonna do a great job at defending country X.

Let's say if I were playing some COD online. I'd much prefer to be on a team of 3 keen pros, as opposed to a team of 10 newbies who don't really wanna play the game.

Kinda unrelated, but I think any argument based on the military teaching morality is out of the question. If you feel the need to force your own morality on others, you'd better check your morality.

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Re: Should the military service be mandatory?
« Reply #23 on: March 07, 2014, 07:31:56 AM »
I sometimes harbor this idea in my head that if the US had mandatory military service, it would mean that every single type of person would be exposed to the innards of the process. Hypothetically (and optimistically), you'd end up with a military service that is more in tune to the thoughts and wants of the entire country, rather than be crafted from this small section of civilians that are the "type" to enjoy armed service.
The point of training is to streamline the behavior of recruits. The cultural and behavorial osmosis flows from the command (both military and political) down to the recruits and not the other way around.

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Re: Should the military service be mandatory?
« Reply #24 on: March 07, 2014, 07:41:50 AM »
I sometimes harbor this idea in my head that if the US had mandatory military service, it would mean that every single type of person would be exposed to the innards of the process. Hypothetically (and optimistically), you'd end up with a military service that is more in tune to the thoughts and wants of the entire country, rather than be crafted from this small section of civilians that are the "type" to enjoy armed service.
The point of training is to streamline the behavior of recruits. The cultural and behavorial osmosis flows from the command (both military and political) down to the recruits and not the other way around.
this +1, if you want to change the military you have to change the people in command.
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Re: Should the military service be mandatory?
« Reply #25 on: March 07, 2014, 10:50:39 AM »
I sometimes harbor this idea in my head that if the US had mandatory military service, it would mean that every single type of person would be exposed to the innards of the process. Hypothetically (and optimistically), you'd end up with a military service that is more in tune to the thoughts and wants of the entire country, rather than be crafted from this small section of civilians that are the "type" to enjoy armed service.
The point of training is to streamline the behavior of recruits. The cultural and behavorial osmosis flows from the command (both military and political) down to the recruits and not the other way around.

Man, you're forgetting the whole idea of what a democracy is (assuming a democracy in the first place).

The political command is in turn controlled by the people (ideally). Merlandese has suggested that if every single person knows first hand what their military forces are like, then they can put pressure on their government to change perceived flaws.

For example, if short people felt oppressed during their service, once they're out there would be pressure on the government to have the culture and behavior changed. That's just a quick example, Merlandese didn't specify what sorts of people were averted to military service. I mean, we could just smash right into gender/sexual/religious/racial/cultural/other minorities in the military.

Though to answer the original question, I think the military has a strong patriarchal culture rooted in tradition. By having everyone thrown into this culture, there's no doubt in my mind that it'd shake things up. How so and to what extent I suppose depends on the society such a thing would be enacted in. In Australia, I believe they'd readily respond to cultural changes. Australia doesn't have a long history, as a result, it's a very modern military from a cultural perspective. It wasn't long ago that our Chief of Army (a lieutenant general) delivered a scathing denouncement of sexism in the military.
« Last Edit: March 07, 2014, 11:05:57 AM by SpecialCookies »
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Re: Should the military service be mandatory?
« Reply #26 on: March 07, 2014, 11:42:28 AM »
Man, you're forgetting the whole idea of what a democracy is (assuming a democracy in the first place).

The political command is in turn controlled by the people (ideally). Merlandese has suggested that if every single person knows first hand what their military forces are like, then they can put pressure on their government to change perceived flaws.

For example, if short people felt oppressed during their service, once they're out there would be pressure on the government to have the culture and behavior changed. That's just a quick example, Merlandese didn't specify what sorts of people were averted to military service. I mean, we could just smash right into gender/sexual/religious/racial/cultural/other minorities in the military.

Yeah, but then everyone would vote to have less training and more doughnuts - then before you know it your military would be so ill-disciplined it can't even stop the French from invading.

That's a bit of an extreme example, but the point is that over time the military would eventually start getting more and more complaints for things like injuries and verbal abuse leading to more and more court cases, this would lessen the authority of higher ranks as they can't do anything remotely straining to their recruits without the risk of some muppet suing them for neglect/abuse if they end up getting a blister during a training exercise.

It may seem like a ridiculous thought, but if you had the combination of people who are begrudging due to being enlisted against their will and a system where you can complain to the government about things you have issues with in the military, knowing this society it would surprise me if this sort of stuff started happening.

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Re: Should the military service be mandatory?
« Reply #27 on: March 07, 2014, 01:46:04 PM »
The political command is in turn controlled by the people (ideally). Merlandese has suggested that if every single person knows first hand what their military forces are like, then they can put pressure on their government to change perceived flaws.

For example, if short people felt oppressed during their service, once they're out there would be pressure on the government to have the culture and behavior changed. That's just a quick example, Merlandese didn't specify what sorts of people were averted to military service. I mean, we could just smash right into gender/sexual/religious/racial/cultural/other minorities in the military.
If every person of a country was processed into the military service, we'd end up with two kinds of people: (1)those who have come to accept the norms and practices of the military and (2)those who reject them. At best, it'll be a stalemate. At worst, it's a national conscription.

Besides, only the most outrageous flaws(such as gross human rights violation) will merit not only action from the political side but also pressure into the top brass for changes. Anything less than very controversial will be rebuffed, if not outright ignored. The reason for this is that military are their own societies completely enclosed and subjugated by civilian leadership. To ask the military to give up control over its culture and norms to the civilian leadership as well is akin to demoting their prestige to less than of a police force (who, mind you, despite being the civilian in nature, still retains its own cultural identity). Disgruntle the military enough and you might get a coup attempt, and the if the military succeeds in overthrowing the civilian government, pray that they don't replace it with themselves.

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Re: Should the military service be mandatory?
« Reply #28 on: March 07, 2014, 02:29:15 PM »
I really think part of this is where you're from/where you are now.

Europe and all the countries in it are just so small that it's feasable that even without a protest there could be some military action between them very easily and with thinks like Ukraine happening it must seem like a situation where Civilians being in the middle of anything would be more likely and thus that reasoning for Mandatory Service would hold up more.

Coming from a Canadian perspective though, the way we're located the two main ways a situation like that would happen would be from either: The United States invading Canada for some reason, A Red Dawn like situation where an other country from the other side of the world invades us. Either way we're going to have way worse problems than some civilians not having training.


Ok, another question a reason for service that has been brought up is to teach gun safety, why do I need to be taught gun safety? I don't go hunting, I have no reason to own a gun, why then should I have to give up 2 years of my life to learn safety for something I'm never going to use, I agree gun safety is important and I think everyone should have to take a gun safety course before owning guns, but the military shouldn't be needed to teach that and why should everyone need to learn about it?
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Merlandese

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Re: Should the military service be mandatory?
« Reply #29 on: March 07, 2014, 07:17:36 PM »
I sometimes harbor this idea in my head that if the US had mandatory military service, it would mean that every single type of person would be exposed to the innards of the process. Hypothetically (and optimistically), you'd end up with a military service that is more in tune to the thoughts and wants of the entire country, rather than be crafted from this small section of civilians that are the "type" to enjoy armed service.
The point of training is to streamline the behavior of recruits. The cultural and behavorial osmosis flows from the command (both military and political) down to the recruits and not the other way around.
this +1, if you want to change the military you have to change the people in command.

Exactly! So, I was in the military for four years, and the one thing I noticed is that people who were any good for the system (that is, people who could create positive change) always left because the system sucked for them. People who were bad for the military (in this situation meaning people who conformed entirely and promised no chance of changing the system for the better) stayed in because the system let them continue being who they were.

Stay in long enough and you gain rank and position. What that means is that the people who are bad for the system always stayed in and gained command power, then propagated those values.

If you agree that you need to change the command to change the system, the first and most realistic step is to join the system and carry your values with you until you reach a command level.
« Last Edit: March 07, 2014, 07:20:17 PM by Merlandese »