(U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Jeremiah Woods)

Editor's Note: This article by Matthew Cox originally appeared on Military.com, a leading source of news for the military and veteran community.

FORT KNOX, Kentucky -- U.S. Army recruiters are offering bonuses worth up to $40,000 to new recruits who sign up for the infantry by Sept. 30 as part of an effort to reverse a shortage of grunts for fiscal 2019.

The drastic increase in bonus amounts for recruits in 11X, the infantry military occupational specialty, went into effect in mid-May, according to U.S. Army Recruiting Command officials, who said that the service still needs to fill about 3,300 infantry training seats by Sept. 30.

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U.S. Marine Corps photo / Staff Sgt. Greg Thomas.

“Clearly, the jury is out” on whether having women serve in Marine Corps and Army infantry units makes the U.S. military more combat effective, Defense Secretary James Mattis said on Tuesday.

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U.S. Army photo / Gertrud Zach.

Junior leaders have long complained that it has become increasingly difficult to prepare new infantry soldiers for deployment. Now the Army is making sure that soldiers are in better shape and more disciplined by the time they arrive at their first infantry units.

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