Peace Time: November 7, 1999


The Army Reserve and National Guard are desperately short of Captains, and seriously short of lieutenants. The situation has been growing worse for several years. Part of the problem is that the ROTC program, which produces most reserve component officers, has been short by hundreds of officers each year, and these usually are taken from the Reserve components' allocation. Worse, lieutenants and captains who complete their eight-year obligations are not-re-enlisting in droves. This is partly due to the sagging military morale in general, the pace of modern life which does not leave civilians with time for expensive hobbies like reserve military duty, and fear of being sent overseas at odd intervals on missions that seem pointless. In response, the Guard and reserve are recruiting their own enlisted personnel to attend Officer Candidate School, and are offering cash incentives. Guard units offer $350 a month to members using the GI bill to attend college if they will also attend OCS and accept a multi-year obligation to serve as an officer.--Stephen V Cole


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