The Pentagon’s much-hyped “deploy or get out” policy — which went into effect on Oct. 1 — is not likely to result in a mass discharge of non-deployable troops, as some news outlets have implied, according to a Pentagon spokeswoman.
Today is an interesting time for military recruitment. The number of military personnel on active duty is at one of the lowest points in living memory, which means that it is important for each branch to find and retain the right people. Currently, the effort to do so seems to center around monetary compensation, either in the form of cash bonuses or educational funding. The deal is simple: do a job the military needs you to do, where and when the military needs you to do it, and the military will reward you. Unfortunately, trends such as the expansion of the Air Force's Aviator Retention Pay program in the year after a drawdown suggest that the deal is not working. But if money isn't enough to fill critical positions in the military, what would be? I think the answer can be found in responding to all of the wants and needs of people in uniform. Here are three ways the Department of Defense can do this better.