News & Politics

Uncle Sam Wants You

While George himself rushed out to denounce the rumors of a draft, <i>Rolling Stone</i> magazine recently unearthed an internal Selective Service memo that reveals the lie.
Is it just me, or do you feel a draft?

In last year's presidential run, young voters were wary that Bush & Co. was quietly preparing for a military draft. The concern was spreading so quickly that George himself was rushed out to denounce what he called "rumors on the internets," and he flatly declared: "We're not going to have a draft -- period." Donnie Rumsfeld went even farther, offering this absolute statement: "The idea of reinstating the draft has never been debated, endorsed, discussed, theorized, pondered, or even whispered by anyone in the Bush administration."

The problem for political liars is that they don't know when to stop. They keep piling it on until the lie becomes too extreme and too big to be true. Rumsfeld's denial, for example, was incredible when he issued it, and now we learn that it was patently untrue -- i.e., a bold-faced lie issued for political purposes.

Rolling Stone magazine recently unearthed an internal Selective Service memo that reveals the lie. It details a meeting with two of Rummie's top aides early in 2003, specifically to debate, discuss, ponder, and otherwise consider reinstating the draft. Indeed, the head of the Selective Service later testified before Congress that, following "consultations with senior Defense manpower officials," the agency began preparing a plan to draft Americans who have special skills that the military needs, such as nurses and doctors.

But conscripting people with medical skills is just a start. A Selective Service official confides that "with some very slight tinkering, we could change that skill to plumbers or linguists or electrical engineers or whatever the military was short."

Military troop levels are already stretched to the breaking point, and now George W. is beating the war drums to move on to Iran, Syria and maybe North Korea. In other words, forget the official lies -- Uncle Sam Wants You!

Jim Hightower is the best-selling author of "Let's Stop Beating Around the Bush," from Viking Press. For more information, visit
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