WHO WILL DO OUR FIGHTING FOR US? by George E. Reedy

WHO WILL DO OUR FIGHTING FOR US?

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KIRKUS REVIEW

GREETINGS are tendered readers worried about the inequities of the draft by LBJ's former Press Secretary, who briefly rehashes recent debates over Selective Service. Like many others, Reedy objects to the present system because it imposes unequal sacrifices through favoritism. He opposes the ""volunteer army"" concept too, as expensive and dangerous to democracy. As the best of all possible solutions, he offers a lottery, drawing on 19-year-olds (the happiest age to be a GI), nationally administered, with local boards left around only to process appeals. The author bolsters this formula--a watered-down version of the plan proposed by the Burke Marshall Commission, on which he served--with the familiar argument that since we'll always have the threat of war (due to other peoples' aggression) we should always have a ready response. Possibly this could be flip-flopped to read: since we always plan to have 2.5 million men under arms, it's simple to send them off responding. Reedy glibly knocks selective conscientious objectors, ridicules the Peace Corps and VISTA as alternative forms of service (on the theory that if there's no risk of death, there's no service) and praises General Hershey's ""steel-trap mind."" All of which won't render this book too appealing to I-A's likely to be stolen by that trap. Fatigued.

Pub Date: May 28th, 1969
Publisher: World