The Army's first commercial for its new 'What's Your Warrior' marketing campaign is here, and it's basically the equivalent of 'Avengers Assemble!' for the next great generation of soldiers.

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Editor's Note: The following is an op-ed. The opinions expressed are those of the author, and do not necessarily reflect the views of Task & Purpose.

Marine Corps boot camp is renowned for turning young men and women from civilians into Marines. It is rightfully known as the most rigorous recruit training in the US military, but for some drill instructors, it just wasn't tough enough.

The Washington Post recently obtained documents detailing incidents wherein over 20 Marines have been disciplined for misconduct just at MCRD San Diego, one of two recruit depots, since 2017. That year is relevant, because Marine recruit training was supposed to be reset after the 2016 suicide death of Pvt. Raheel Siddiqui, who killed himself after being viciously hazed, which included racial and ethnic slurs and being put in an industrial clothes dryer.

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SAN DIEGO —The Marines say changes in the way they train recruits and their notoriously hard-nosed drill instructors have led to fewer incidents of drill instructor misconduct, officials told the Union-Tribune.

Their statement about training followed an Oct. 5 Washington Post report revealing that more than 20 Marines at the San Diego boot camp have been disciplined for misconduct since 2017, including cases of physical attacks and racist and homophobic slurs. The story also was published in the Union-Tribune.

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For the first time, the Army brass and defense industry folks descending on Washington, D.C. for the annual Association of the U.S. Army conference will be joined by the Army's latest pride and joy — it's team of professional gamers.

Yes, the Army really has that.

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New soldiers arriving for their first day of Basic Combat Training, Aug. 19, 2016 with Company F, 1st Battalion, 34th Infantry Regiment on Fort Jackson, S.C. are "welcomed" by drill sergeants from both the U.S. Army and U.S. Army Reserve. (U.S. Army/Sgt. 1st Class Brian Hamilton)

Editor's Note: The following is an op-ed. The opinions expressed are those of the author, and do not necessarily reflect the views of Task & Purpose.

A year after missing its recruitment goals for the first time in more than a decade, the U.S. Army announced on Sept. 17 that it will meet its target of 68,000 new soldiers for the 2019 fiscal year.

But despite touting new initiatives, digital platforms, and marketing techniques (and lowering its goal by 12,000 in 2019 amid a more modest growth plan in the next five years), the Army is not in the clear yet. The service's new initiatives should be the expectation rather than considered innovative — and if the Army really wants to make good on its modernization promises, it has to ask hard questions about current processes

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Philadelphia rugby star Nasair Boston-Epps was denied entry to the Army for an old stray bullet wound. The former secretary of the army read an Inquirer column about him and got him approved. On Wednesday, Sept. 18, 2019, Boston-Epps meets with his recruiter Quoya Dubose at the recruiters office in North Philadelphia. (The Philadelphia Inquirer/Steven M. Falk via Tribune News Service)

The man on the phone told Quiana Boston that he had run the Army for President Obama. And that he'd like to try to help her son achieve his dream.

Boston was hopeful, but cautious. Her son, Nasair Boston-Epps, had already lost so much. A star player on his rugby team in North Philadelphia, the Nomads, and a standout cadet at the Philadelphia Military Academy, Nasair was shot last year on his way to his after-school job at McDonald's. It was a stray bullet, and it nearly killed him.

It nearly killed his dream, too: of becoming a physical therapist in the Army, following his grandfather and great-great-grandfather, Vietnam and World War II vets, and his father, a Navy veteran of the Gulf War. But, after a grueling fight to get his strength back and return to the rugby pitch, the gregarious kid built like a tank was rejected when he tried to join the Army.

They said the wounds from the bullet were disqualifying — a snap decision that surprised his doctors, teachers, and recruiters, who all knew that Nasair had recovered fully.

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