Attrition: More Volunteers Than Are Needed

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November 7,2008: The U.S. Army had its highest recruitment and retention success in five years, in the fiscal year ending this past September. The army recruited 185,000 troops, with 43 percent for the active force, and the rest for the reserves. All the other services combined recruited a bit less (139,000) than the army total.

Many of those thinking of enlisting are aware that the Iraq war has been one, and the fighting in Afghanistan is much more limited (despite the headlines.) Last month, 13 U.S. troops died in Iraq (seven from combat causes, the lowest ever) and fifteen died in Afghanistan. With a recession under way, military recruiters are seeing some relief from the stress of competing with so many good civilian jobs.

 


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