Army recruiter arrested in sex case

For the second time in less than a year, an Inland military recruiter has been arrested on suspicion of engaging in a sex act with an underage girl.

Christian Rigal Mercado, 25, of Moreno Valley, was jailed Wednesday after a security guard at the Inland Center Mall in San Bernardino reported that he saw him involved with the girl inside a parked car. Mercado later posted $50,000 bail.

The 17-year-old girl was a potential U.S. Army recruit, said San Bernardino Police Department Lt. Dan Keil.

Mercado, who was booked on suspicion of oral copulation with a minor, worked as a recruiter out of the Army’s office on Mt. Vernon Avenue in San Bernardino. He has been suspended from recruiting duties pending an investigation, army officials said.

“We’re a values-based organization, and basically, we have no tolerance for infractions of the law,” said Nya Paul, a spokeswoman for the Army’s Southern California Recruiting Battalion, which oversees the Inland region’s offices.

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Grannies to Toys’R’Us : War is Not a Game

NEW YORK — On December 4, the Raging Grannies and the Granny Peace Brigade created a wonderful holiday peace event at the crossroads of the world, Times Square. The purpose was to send the message: No more war toys and no more war.

They met near the Recruiting Station where two New York City Police Department officers, polite but not particularly interested in the First Amendment, told them that they had to move on. Debate was futile. So, they moved to the huge Broadway Toys “R” Us where several grannies had entered minutes earlier, got on the three story high Ferris wheel in the store, and unfurled large yellow banners that read “No More War Toys — No More War.”

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Ex-recruiter sentenced to prison for sex crimes

HEMET, Calif. — A former Marine Corps recruiter has been sentenced to 10 years in prison in Southern California’s Riverside County after pleading guilty to child sex charges.

Prosecutors say former Staff Sgt. Bryan Damone Cunningham pleaded guilty Friday to felony charges of committing lewd acts and sodomy with a child under 14.

The girl told police she met Cunningham online and had sex with him and two other men. She also told police Cunningham wanted her to work as a prostitute and had tried to take her to Los Angeles County against her will.

Cunningham could have faced life in prison if convicted of a kidnapping for rape charge, in addition to an attempted pimping charge and two other felonies that the district attorney’s office agreed to dismiss.

Preschool Hype: National Security Edition

Retired officers push early childhood benefits to help national security

A bipartisan group of retired military officers says without more educational and health investments in children the country will face a growing “national security threat.”

Now, the group is pushing for significant investments in early childhood education, parenting guidance as well as mental and nutrition services.

“The safety of our country demands urgent and intelligent action,” the group says in its mission statement. “We call on all policymakers to ensure America’s national security by supporting interventions that will prepare young people for a life of military service and productive citizenship.”

Congress is considering legislation for a new initiative called the “Early Learning Challenge Fund” designed to help states improve their early education programs and expand access to include more at-risk kids. The House already passed its version of the bill, which would fund $1 billion annually for eight years in competitive grants to states. The Senate has yet to vote on that bill.

University of Phoenix’s Curious Take on the Law

The University of Phoenix has 190 campuses operating in 39 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. The school says it has 420,000 students and tens of thousands of employees at its schools of nursing, business and education, among others.

But it does not have a law school. Maybe it should.

In an official response (PDF) to our report on enrollment abuses at Phoenix, the university’s parent company — Apollo Group Inc. — made a legal mistake so basic that, when told about it, a law professor we consulted was momentarily at a loss for words.

In a joint investigation with Marketplace, we found a dozen current and former students, as well as two former enrollment officers, who said that Phoenix uses misleading tactics to coax people into signing up for school and, in many cases, for large government loans. Phoenix has become the single largest recipient of federal student aid, with more than $3 billion from government loan programs last year.

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Ex-recruiter gets 3 years on child sex charges

DEADWOOD, S.D. — A former Army recruiter has been sentenced to three years in prison for rape and possession of child pornography stemming from a relationship with a Lead-Deadwood High School student he met online.

Authorities said Juan Otero of Chicago was arrested Feb. 12 at a hotel room after dropping the girl off at her school. He allegedly told police he had been at the school to enlist potential recruits.

The 22-year-old Otero pleaded guilty in August to three counts of rape and two counts of possession of child pornography. Prosecutors dropped four other rape counts and five counts of child pornography possession in exchange for the plea.

A grand jury indictment said the rapes happened in August 2008 and in February 2009. The child pornography charges relate to images from Otero’s computer of him and the girl.

Community Groups vs. Military Recruiters

Military recruiters today have unprecedented access to students and other young people, particularly in poor neighborhoods. There are generally more Army recruiters at high schools than there are college counselors, says Elmer Roldan, fundraising director at Community Coalition of South Central Los Angeles, and there is “a more aggressive strategy to militarize them than to prepare them for college.” He notes that military recruiters target the best and brightest students, particularly young women.

So when high school senior Stephanie Hoang started working with the Oakland, California–based organization BAY-Peace, educating her peers about the potential risks of joining the military and helping to build alternative education and employment opportunities, her truth-in-recruitment work was more than just an internship: “It’s my peers being affected,” she says. “[Recruiters] are looking at me and thinking that I’m the person they want in the military.”

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Military Children in Crisis

A seven-year-old second-grader attempted suicide while his father was serving yet another tour in Iraq. Seven years old. Seven. His mother was one of half a dozen military spouses I have spoken with about soldiers’ kids who have attempted suicide during their fathers’ deployments.

When I was seven, it was 1972, and there were 69,000 US troops in Vietnam. Men were still being drafted and deployed, but not my dad. So I was spared the circumstances that led a seven-year-old to try to kill himself.

Three-plus decades ago, parents were exempt from conscription because of overwhelming concern about the harmful effects of deployment on children. Today, roughly half of the troops who have served in Iraq and Afghanistan are parents, many of whom have served multiple tours. Repeat deployments stress soldiers and escalate the likelihood of psychological injuries that can last for a lifetime. There is a small, but rapidly growing, body of evidence suggesting that the same is true of their children.

The Associated Press reported that “After nearly eight years of war, soldiers are not the only ones experiencing mental anguish…. Last year, children of US troops sought outpatient mental health care 2 million times, double the number at the start of the Iraq war…. Since the 2003 invasion of Iraq, inpatient visits among military children have increased 50 percent. (“War stresses military kids,” July 12, 2009.)

The United States Department of Veterans Affairs latest research on mental health issues of troops who served in Iraq and Afghanistan shows that “the prevalence of new diagnoses in early 2008 had nearly doubled from four years prior in 2004.” (“Study reveals sharp rise in diagnoses of disorders,” Stars & Stripes, July 18, 2009.)

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Military Recruiters: Criminal, Abusive or Suspect Activity

Eight-year Chronological Review of Public Reports as of August 28, 2009 Compiled by Learning Not Recruiting – Toledo, Ohio

Click here for report

Army considers middle-school JROTC program

WICHITA, Kan. — The U.S. Army wants middle school students.

The Wichita school district in south-central Kansas is one of a few nationwide offering middle school programs based on the Junior Reserve Officers Training Corps curriculum. Top Army officials are studying its programs to see if they could be a model for others nationwide.

The Army is collaborating with the National School Boards Association to develop a so-called JROTC-plus program that would use the high school JROTC curriculum as a basis for a middle school program, Army JROTC director Col. John Vanderbleek said.

“We want to reach students at that age before they make decisions that put them at risk,” said Vanderbleek, who came to Wichita recently from Fort Monroe, Va., to see the Kansas program for himself.

The Army plans to fund a pilot program next school year, and the money will most likely go to an existing program like the one in Wichita.

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Investigation halts transfer of student records to military

SAN DIEGO — The San Diego Unified School District has halted its annual transfer of student records to the military amid allegations that administrators pre-marked parental consent forms that give recruiters permission to contact families.

District officials launched an investigation into the matter Wednesday and began sifting through thousands of high school enrollment documents.

De’Onte Victorian, a sophomore at Abraham Lincoln High School, brought his pre-checked form to Tuesday’s school board meeting to protest what he described as “a scam to get him to join the military instead of going to college.”

De’Onte noticed that the question asking, “Is it okay to release your child’s information to military recruiters?” had a computer-generated check inside the box next to it. Other questions had also been answered, including one regarding migrant work and another asking whether a parent wants their address and phone number printed in a directory.

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Latest recruiter sex case prompts Corps review

A Marine recruiter in Utah is accused of having sex with a 15-year-old girl, becoming the fourth in 13 months to face similar charges.

The cases have prompted the Corps to review its screening process for recruiters and to increase the amount of ethics training at Recruiters School, said Maj. Chris Devine, a spokesman for Marine Corps Recruiting Command.

Staff Sgt. Trevor Hooper, 26, was arraigned Tuesday in Salt Lake City, said Alicia Cook, a spokeswoman with the Salt Lake County Prosecutor’s Office. He faces one count of first-degree rape, one count of forcible sodomy and 12 counts of sexual exploitation of a minor, according to charging documents. He has been suspended from recruiting duty and will not serve in that capacity again, said Maj. Christopher Logan, a spokesman for the Corps’ Western recruiting region.

Police began investigating Hooper, who worked at the recruiting substation in East Salt Lake City, in April after the girl’s father found a digital memory card containing images of her having sex, said Lt. Don Hutson, a spokesman for the Salt Lake County Sheriff’s Office. Authorities say Hooper and the girl met at a high school where he was recruiting. He befriended her, and they eventually decided to rent a hotel room, where the two allegedly had sex, police said.

Initially, police charged Hooper with four counts of sexual activity with a minor and one count of sexual exploitation of a minor. After prosecutors reviewed the evidence, however, they filed more serious charges.

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Recruitment of mentally disabled youth a ‘great discredit’ to USMC

Joshua Fry spent the first year of his life homeless on the streets of Los Angeles.

His mother was addicted to crack; his father to heroin. After his parents were arrested for shoplifting, Fry was sent to live with a series of relatives.

When Fry was brought to live with his grandmother in Newport Beach at age 3, he did not speak, was not potty trained and tested out at an IQ of 70. Social Service workers said he was severely mentally disabled. Autism was later diagnosed as well.

“He was like a wild animal,” said Mary Beth Fry, his grandmother.

By the time he was 18, Fry had spent years on psychotropic drugs. He finished high school in a lock-down facility for troubled youth, where he also received treatment for an attraction to child pornography.

By all accounts, he was an unlikely choice to become one of the few, the proud, the Marines.

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Navy recruiter admits role in sex sting

A 32-year-old Navy recruiter from Kansas has pleaded guilty to attempted human trafficking for trying to arrange a sexual encounter with what he thought was an 11-year-old girl.

Machinist’s Mate 2nd Class (SW/AW) Shane Allan Childers of Olathe entered the plea Wednesday in U.S. District Court in Kansas City, Mo. He faces 15 years to life in prison.

The arrest stemmed from a sting operation by several law enforcement agencies in the Kansas City area that produced seven indictments.

Sanders admitted using government equipment at the Armed Forces Recruiting Station in Lenexa, Kan., to respond in March to a Craigslist ad offering “little girls.” Childers was wearing his uniform, but had taken off his uniform shirt and was wearing a white undershirt when he showed up at the residence, according to federal officials. He was arrested when he paid an undercover officer $60 to have sex with the child. He paid an extra $20 to have intercourse without using a condom.

Childers enlisted in 1997.

Board of Ed Restricts Military Recruiters’ Access to Students

NEW YORK, NY June 24, 2009 —Military recruiters won’t be given as much free reign to high school students, under new regulations issued by the City’s Department of Education.

REPORTER: The federal No Child Left Behind Act requires school districts to provide the names and contact information of 11th and 12th grade students to recruiters – except when families opt out. But Udi Ofer, advocacy director for the New York Civil Liberties Union, says principals didn’t have clear regulations about how much access to give recruiters.

OFER: And we heard complaints from principals and the DOE has acknowledged that it has received complaints from principals about overly aggressive military recruiters trying to gain access to schools.

REPORTER: The new policy says recruiters can’t use class time. And students and their families will get clear opt-out letters in eight different languages.

See also:

America’s Child Soldiers: US Military Recruiting Children

“No Child Left Behind “: “Trojan Horse” for Pentagon Recruiters

Bush Profiteers Collect Billions From No Child Left Behind

From recruiting to rape

Anti-war advocates aren’t surprised by shocking abuse charges

LOS ANGELES (FinalCall.com) - Prosecutors have set a $1 million bail for a U.S. Marine charged with pimping, kidnapping, and intending to rape a 14-year-old girl.

Reports indicate that Staff Sgt. Bryan Damone Cunningham, of San Pedro, California was previously honored three times for good conduct.

Military watch groups say the incident presents an opportunity to shed light on illegal recruitment methods, primarily targeting minors.

According to reports, after arranging the plot online, the recruiter drove 18-year-old Justin Willard and 19-year-old Homer Daskalakis to Hemet, Calif., to have sex with the girl. Afterward, he attempted to take her from the southeast location to Los Angeles.

Police discovered the plot when they stopped the car, which was being driven erratically, reports said.

See also:

Police: Marine recruiter planned to pimp Hemet 14-year-old girl

Marine recruiter, two others, charged with rape of Hemet girl

Assembly Bills Aim at Recruiting Youngsters for Overseas Wars

Former Marine recruiter pleads guilty to rape

Recruiter charged in child prostitution sting

Army’s New Recruiting Tool – Video Arcade for Mallrats

Bush Profiteers Collect Billions From No Child Left Behind

Former Marine Recruiter, Sgt. Victor Sanchez-Millan, Sentenced for rape

Marine Recruiter Sgt. Arthur Pledger Arraigned in Rape Case

“No Child Left Behind “: “Trojan Horse” for Pentagon Recruiters

America’s Child Soldiers: US Military Recruiting Children

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Police: Marine recruiter planned to pimp Hemet 14-year-old girl

A 14-year-old Hemet girl was the apparent victim of a Marine Corps recruiter’s plot to turn her into a hooker in Los Angeles, according to Hemet police.

The recruiter, Staff Sgt. Bryan Damone Cunningham, is accused of driving two prospective Marine recruits to Hemet to have sex with the girl, then driving all three to Los Angeles — or starting to.

The trip was interrupted in Orange, where Cunningham was stopped by police for driving erratically.

After police asked the girl what she was doing with the three older men and she described the circumstances, Cunningham and the other two passengers, Homer Michael Daskalakis, 19, of Long Beach and Justin Willard, 18, of Los Angeles, were arrested.

Police said the three had sex with the girl while in Hemet and Cunningham intended to pimp her out in Los Angeles.

Neither Daskalakis nor Willard was charged in connection with the pimp plot.

Cunningham worked at a recruiting substation in Long Beach.

See also: Marine recruiter, two others, charged with rape of Hemet girl

Marine recruiter, two others, charged with rape of Hemet girl

A Marine recruiter and two others were arrested last month for allegedly having sexual relations with a 14-year-old Hemet girl, authorities said.

Staff Sgt. Bryan Damone Cunningham, 33, of San Pedro, was arrested May 23 by the Hemet Police Department, according to a news release from the 12th Marine Corps District in San Diego and Hemet police Cpl. Eddie Pust.

Pust didn’t have additional details about the alleged sexual relations, and detectives handling the case couldn’t be reached for comment Sunday.

Cunningham, who was assigned to a recruiting substation in Long Beach, has been charged with seven felonies, including kidnapping to commit robbery/rape, attempted pimping and sodomy, according to court records.

He is being held at the Southwest Detention Center in French Valley, with bail set at $1 million, according to Riverside County Sheriff’s Department records.

See his case file here.

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In a Switch, City Tells Schools to Monitor On-Campus Military Recruiting

Schools will be required to provide military opt-out forms to 9th- and 10th-grade students and to develop a plan to monitor on-campus recruiting by the armed forces, according to new guidelines announced by the New York City Department of Education on Monday night.

The requirements, set to go into effect this fall, follow months of criticism from civil liberties groups, which had pushed to curtail recruiters’ access after school officials decided last year to give military recruiters access to a central database of students’ names, addresses and telephone numbers. Previously, recruiters had been forced to go from school to school to collect students’ data.

The new guidelines extend the requirement to include opt-out forms in orientation packets to younger high school students; in the past, only 11th- and 12th-grade students received the forms. The Department of Education will also add information on opting out to its instructions on their rights and to materials for students who take an armed services aptitude test.

See also:

America’s Child Soldiers: US Military Recruiting Children

“Don’t enlist, resist”

Humboldt cities take on military recruiting — and U.S.

Assembly Bills Aim at Recruiting Youngsters for Overseas Wars

War is not a career opportunity

Recruiter charged in child prostitution sting

Army recruiting stand-down ordered after suicides

Bush Profiteers Collect Billions From No Child Left Behind

Former Marine Recruiter, Sgt. Victor Sanchez-Millan, Sentenced for Sex with Minor

Marine Recruiter Sgt. Arthur Pledger Arraigned in Rape Case

“No Child Left Behind “: “Trojan Horse” for Pentagon Recruiters

Pentagon Targets Afro and Hispanic Youth to Fight Its Wars

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Navy unveils ‘Bravo Zulu’ to target younger recruits

The Naval Academy yesterday debuted its newest recruiting tool __ a graphic novel called “Bravo Zulu,” which is Navy-speak for “Well Done.”

The 16-page, comic book-style publication is designed to get middle school and early high school students interested in attending the academy.

The short novel tells the story of five plebes who have become exhausted and discouraged during Plebe Summer. They talk about dropping out of the academy until they find themselves in the basement of the chapel, where they see the crypt of John Paul Jones.

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Humboldt cities take on military recruiting — and U.S.

ARCATA – David was sitting in a coffee shop when he first got the idea to take on Goliath.

The “David” in this story has a last name of Meserve. The “Goliath” is less metaphorically known as the United States government.

And the tale revolves around a first-of-its-kind effort by two small Humboldt County cities to prevent military recruiters from trolling for prospects among the towns’ residents under age 18.

Virtually unnoticed by the rest of the world, voters in Eureka (population 26,000) and Arcata (population 18,000) last November approved ballot measures that were collectively referred to as “the Youth Protection Act.”

Passed by convincing margins (73 percent in Arcata, 57 percent in Eureka), the act prohibits military recruiters from initiating contact with anyone under the age of 18 within the cities’ limits. Violations can result in a fine of $100 for both the recruiters and their commanding officers.

See also:

Assembly Bills Aim at Recruiting Youngsters for Overseas Wars

ACLU files suit to allow counter-recruiting

Bush Profiteers Collect Billions From No Child Left Behind

Feds Act Against Eureka, Arcata Over Voted Measures to Restrict Military Recruiter Access to Minors

Military at ToysRus Austin

“No Child Left Behind “: “Trojan Horse” for Pentagon Recruiters

America’s Child Soldiers: US Military Recruiting Children

New Army Recruiting Tactic: Obama will “Get Us Out of Iraq”

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Assembly Bills Aim at Recruiting Youngsters for Overseas Wars

Court Battle Looms Over Youth Protection Act

The Pentagon is on a direct collision course in the U.S. District Court for Northern California over its obligations under international law to stop military recruitment of youth under the age of 17. The case in question, United States of America v. Cities of Eureka and Arcata, will have significant ramifications for the military’s recruitment policies, and for the ongoing political defense of JROTC (Junior Reserve Officers’ Training Corps). The California state legislature, currently considering three bills that would grant special treatment to JROTC, one of the Pentagon’s favorite military recruitment programs, may find itself dragged into this battle if it gives its seal of approval to any of these bills.

In 2002, the U.S. Senate ratified an international treaty that outlaws the recruitment of child soldiers. By signing on to this treaty, called the “Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child,” the U.S. agreed not to recruit youth under the age of 17.

See more on this topic.

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Former Marine recruiter pleads guilty to rape

A former Marine Corps recruiter pleaded guilty Monday to two counts of third-degree rape involving a 15-year-old Valley High School student.

Arthur Pledger Jr., 27, was sentenced to five years supervised probation, said Steve Tedder, a spokesman for the Commonwealth Attorney’s office. Pledger entered the guilty plea during a pre-trial hearing, Tedder said.

If Pledger violates his probation he could receive five years in prison, Tedder said.

Pledger was accused of having sex with the teen on two separate occasions between Sept. 1 and Oct. 10 after they met at the school and arranged to meet on MySpace.com.

He was discharged from the Marines in December because of the case.

See also: Marine Recruiter Sgt. Arthur Pledger Arraigned in Rape Case

Marine Corps Recruiting Center Attacked in Berkeley

At 9PM on March 18th, the eve of the 6th anniversary of the war in Iraq, a group of persons wearing masks smashed the windows and splattered red paint at the U.S. Marine Corps Recruiting Center in Berkeley, California.

The center has been the target of protests for the last 18 months, and stands as a symbol of U.S. militarism and imperialist wars. The act of property destruction stands alone as the embodiment of frustration of a people whose government does not listen to or care about them.

Police have not made any arrests but are reviewing the tape, said Sgt. Mary Kusmiss. A sledgehammer and a crowbar were found in a nearby garbage can, and are being reviewing as evidence. After breaking windows and improving the Marine Corps logo at the center, the group wearing masks and dark clothing scattered in three different directions, police said.

As of the time of this posting, no one involved has been arrested. The act was easy. You and a few friends could have pulled it off any day.

NO MORE IMPERIALIST WARS!!!

NO MORE GOVERNMENT!!!

Recruiter charged in child prostitution sting

A Navy recruiter in Missouri was arrested March 5 for allegedly paying $80 to have sex with an 11-year-old girl, federal authorities said.

Machinist’s Mate 2nd Class (AW/SW) Shane Childers, 32, was one of four men caught in a sting operation in which undercover agents posted ads online offering to arrange for men to have sex with underage girls, federal court documents show.

See also:

Former Marine Recruiter, Sgt. Victor Sanchez-Millan, Sentenced for Sex with Minor

Marine Recruiter Sgt. Arthur Pledger Arraigned in Rape Case

Military at ToysRus Austin

“No Child Left Behind “: “Trojan Horse” for Pentagon Recruiters

America’s Child Soldiers: US Military Recruiting Children

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Western Washington University Students Defeat Military Recruiters

On February 12th 2009, WWU students won a significant victory against military recruiters by collecting more than 50 pounds of recruiter materials in trash bags, worth more than $1000.

For immediate release:

On Thursday February 12 we scored a significant victory for freedom of speech and assembly on campus. The administrators of Western Washington University’s Wade King Student Recreation Center (a public building, part of a public university) and the Career Services Center intended to prevent the peaceful distribution of materials intended to demystify the half-truths propounded by the various groups of military recruiters at the Career Fair (a public event).

In the past, campus administrators successfully brought in campus police to shut down students’ rights to free speech. This time, the students had secured legal support and called the University’s bluff, demonstrating in the process that the University had previously abused its authority.

See also:

War is not a career opportunity

Wake Up Call: Activists Visit “The Army Experience”

Recruiters banned at RIT

ACLU files suit to allow counter-recruiting

Feds Act Against Eureka, Arcata Over Voted Measures to Restrict Military Recruiter Access to Minors

Former Marine Recruiter, Sgt. Victor Sanchez-Millan, Sentenced for Sex with Minor

Marine Recruiter Sgt. Arthur Pledger Arraigned in Rape Case

“No Child Left Behind “: “Trojan Horse” for Pentagon Recruiters

America’s Child Soldiers: US Military Recruiting Children

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War is not a career opportunity

AMHERST, Mass.–Ten students and community members staged a die-in at the University of Massachusetts (UMass) career fair in front of the U.S. Army and Border Patrol recruitment tables on February 10.

Activists organized the die-in quickly–in only 30 minutes–after the Marines sent out an e-mail to every UMass student inviting people to join them at the fair. The only other organization with this privilege is the UMass administration.

Participants in the die-in lay on the floor and did not budge, even when military recruiters insulted them and career fair personnel told them that they had called the police. Other students seemed supportive of the action, with some asking how they could get involved.

See also:

Wake Up Call: Activists Visit “The Army Experience”

Recruiters banned at RIT

Army recruiting stand-down ordered after suicides

ACLU files suit to allow counter-recruiting

Feds Act Against Eureka, Arcata Over Voted Measures to Restrict Military Recruiter Access to Minors

Former Marine Recruiter, Sgt. Victor Sanchez-Millan, Sentenced for Sex with Minor

Marine Recruiter Sgt. Arthur Pledger Arraigned in Rape Case

“No Child Left Behind “: “Trojan Horse” for Pentagon Recruiters

America’s Child Soldiers: US Military Recruiting Children

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Military to bribe foreigners with citizenship for service

Those who are in the US on temporary visas will have a chance to acquire citizenship, if they enter military service as little as six months.

According to a Sunday New York Times report, for the first time since the war in Vietnam the US army has expressed willingness to recruit the immigrants who long for US citizenship.

Skillful immigrants who have lived at least for two years in the US can enroll in military to help the already exhausted army worn out by two wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and pave the way for their own permanent citizenship.

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Army recruits mainly in South

WASHINGTON — If U.S. soldiers seem to speak with a slight drawl, that is no coincidence: the service continues to recruit mainly from Southern states, a study released Wednesday indicates.

The National Priorities Project, a research organization, reported that the highest Army recruitment rates were in Southern counties and that only two of the top 100 counties for Army recruitment rates were in the Northeast.

The group’s report, which also questioned the Army’s methods for counting recruits, reinforces an old trend in the military’s geographic tilt and suggests challenges the Army will face as it continues to expand by tens of thousands of soldiers a year.

Researchers said the findings indicate a “significant gap” in the Army’s goals for numbers and quality of recruits.

See also:

Recruiters banned at RIT

Army recruiting stand-down ordered after suicides

ACLU files suit to allow counter-recruiting

Feds Act Against Eureka, Arcata Over Voted Measures to Restrict Military Recruiter Access to Minors

“No Child Left Behind “: “Trojan Horse” for Pentagon Recruiters

Pentagon Targets Afro and Hispanic Youth to Fight Its Wars

America’s Child Soldiers: US Military Recruiting Children

New Army Recruiting Tactic: Obama will “Get Us Out of Iraq”

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Recruiters banned at RIT

ROCHESTER, N.Y.–Members of the Campus Antiwar Network (CAN) at the Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) are celebrating a significant victory after the director for Campus Life issued the order to stop allowing military recruiters in the Student Alumni Union.

On January 15, CAN members were promoting an upcoming meeting calling for the U.S. to immediately withdraw from Afghanistan when an ally who works at the information desk told us that military recruiters were arriving in half an hour. An emergency message was immediately sent out to CAN members for a counter-recruitment action.

When two members of the National Guard arrived, one of them laid out their tablecloth and the other went to reserve a table. CAN members went over to one of the recruiters and asked him questions about Iraq, Afghanistan and Palestine. The recruiter portrayed the National Guard as “the good guys,” who “help out with Hurricane Katrina and stuff.” He also claimed that the National Guard is not deployed overseas, which is false.

When the other Guardsman returned, he said that they couldn’t have a table because of “something that happened before with the Marines or whatever.”

The recruiters may have been clueless about why they couldn’t have a table, but CAN members were very much aware. On October 24, CAN at RIT held a counter-recruitment action with over two dozen protesters, including members of the Iraq Veterans Against the War. Antiwar protesters chanting prevented recruiters from recruiting, and even talking. We forced them to pack up.

See also:

Army recruiting stand-down ordered after suicides

ACLU files suit to allow counter-recruiting

Feds Act Against Eureka, Arcata Over Voted Measures to Restrict Military Recruiter Access to Minors

“No Child Left Behind “: “Trojan Horse” for Pentagon Recruiters

Pentagon Targets Afro and Hispanic Youth to Fight Its Wars

America’s Child Soldiers: US Military Recruiting Children

New Army Recruiting Tactic: Obama will “Get Us Out of Iraq”

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Army recruiting stand-down ordered after suicides

Army Secretary Pete Geren has ordered a stand-down of the Army’s entire recruiting force and a review of almost every aspect of the job is underway in the wake of a wide-ranging investigation of four suicides in the Houston Recruiting Battalion.

Poor command climate, failing personal relationships and long, stressful work days were factors in the suicides, the investigation found. The investigating officer noted a “threatening” environment in the battalion and that leaders may have tried to influence statements from witnesses.

See also:

4 Recruiter Suicides Lead to Army Probe

Army Manual Promotes Christianity to Combat Epidemic of Suicides

America’s Child Soldiers: US Military Recruiting Children

“No Child Left Behind “: “Trojan Horse” for Pentagon Recruiters

New Army Recruiting Tactic: Obama will “Get Us Out of Iraq”

Pentagon Targets Afro and Hispanic Youth to Fight Its Wars

Army’s New Recruiting Tool – Video Arcade for Mallrats

Feds Act Against Eureka, Arcata Over Voted Measures to Restrict Military Recruiter Access to Minors

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Army’s New Recruiting Tool – Video Arcade for Mallrats

The New York Times has an excellent piece on the Army’s new urban recruiting tool: a $13 million video arcade in suburban Philly.

That’s right. According to the Times, the Army is having a hard time recruiting in urban areas. So the service set up the 14,500 square foot “Army Experience Center” in the Franklin Mills Mall. The place is packed with first-person shooters, full-scale simulators (and 22 recruiters).

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4 Recruiter Suicides Lead to Army Probe

HENDERSON, Texas (AP) — Sgt. 1st Class Patrick Henderson, a strapping Iraq combat veteran, spent the last, miserable months of his life as an Army recruiter, cold-calling dozens of people a day from his strip-mall office and sitting in strangers’ living rooms, trying to sign up their sons and daughters for an unpopular war.

He put in 13-hour days, six days a week, often encountering abuse from young people or their parents. When he and other recruiters would gripe about the pressure to meet their quotas, their superiors would snarl that they ought to be grateful they were not in Iraq, according to his widow.

Less than a year into the job, Henderson — afflicted by flashbacks and sleeplessness after his tour of battle in Iraq — went into his backyard shed, slid the chain lock in place, and hanged himself with a dog chain.

“Stunning”: CBS News Discovers “Hidden Epidemic” of Military Suicides

Former Marine Recruiter, Sgt. Victor Sanchez-Millan, Sentenced for Sex with Minor

Marine Recruiter Sgt. Arthur Pledger Arraigned in Rape Case

“No Child Left Behind “: “Trojan Horse” for Pentagon Recruiters

America’s Child Soldiers: US Military Recruiting Children

Pentagon Targets Afro and Hispanic Youth to Fight Its Wars

New Army Recruiting Tactic: Obama will “Get Us Out of Iraq”

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Former Marine Recruiter, Sgt. Victor Sanchez-Millan, Sentenced for Sex with Minor

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — A former Marine recruiter learned Monday that he will spend the next year in a Sacramento jail.

See also:

Marine Recruiter Sgt. Arthur Pledger Arraigned in Rape Case

Military at ToysRus Austin

“No Child Left Behind “: “Trojan Horse” for Pentagon Recruiters

Pentagon Targets Afro and Hispanic Youth to Fight Its Wars

America’s Child Soldiers: US Military Recruiting Children

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Marine Recruiter Sgt. Arthur Pledger Arraigned in Rape Case

A Marine recruiter accused of rape in a case involving a 15-year-old high school student in Louisville, Ky., pleaded not guilty Monday to two counts of third-degree rape.Sgt. Arthur Pledger Jr., 27, is accused of sexual misconduct with the teen on two occasions between Sept. 1 and Oct. 10. If convicted, he faces up to 10 years in prison.

See also:

Military at ToysRus Austin

“No Child Left Behind “: “Trojan Horse” for Pentagon Recruiters

Pentagon Targets Afro and Hispanic Youth to Fight Its Wars

America’s Child Soldiers: US Military Recruiting Children

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Military at ToysRus Austin

Another propaganda recruiting effort under the Toys for Tots program.

See also:

America’s Child Soldiers: US Military Recruiting Children

“No Child Left Behind “: “Trojan Horse” for Pentagon Recruiters

Army signs “Community Covenant with High Desert Cities

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Pentagon Targets Afro and Hispanic Youth to Fight Its Wars

If African-Americans are overrepresented in the armed forces it is likely because of the military’s practice of “strategically targeting low-income youth and students of color,” the ACLU has found.Result: While African-Americans make up only 16% of the same-age civilian population, in 2006 they represented about 22% of enlisted Army personnel.

Even though enlistment under law is supposed to be voluntary, the Pentagon‘s racial targeting “in combination with exaggerated promises of financial rewards for enlistment, undermines the voluntariness of their enlistment,” ACLU said in a 46-page report, “Soldiers of Misfortune.”

Can it be accidental that 54% of the participants in JROTC programs are African-American and Latino students?

Also see: America’s Child Soldiers

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New Army Recruiting Tactic: Obama will “Get Us Out of Iraq”


Well that didn’t take long.  Polls across America had been closed for less than 24 hours and Army Career Counselors were already exploiting Barack Obama’s victory in an effort to recruit former soldiers back into units.  This email was forwarded to me by an Iraq veteran and former Army captain who received it on Wednesday:

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