Bush says no military draft
ST. LOUIS, Missouri (AFP) Oct 09, 2004
President George W. Bush vowed Friday that there would be no return to compulsory military service in the United States -- despite its forces being stretched in Iraq and other parts of the world.
"Forget all this talk about a draft. We're not going to have a draft so long as I'm the president," Bush said during the second presidential election debate here with Democratic contender Senator John Kerry.
US military difficulties in Iraq and measures taken to extend the mobilisation of reservists and national guard members have fuelled rumours that the draft -- ended toward the end of the 1961-75 Vietnam War -- could return.
The Republican dominated House of Representatives on Tuesday rejected a law that would have established a two year national service.
"I hear there are rumours on the internet that we're going to have a draft. We're not going to have a draft, period," said Bush.
"The all-volunteer army works. It works particularly when we pay our troops well. It works when we make sure they've got housing, like we've done in the last military budgets.
"An all-volunteer army is best suited to fight the wars of the 21st century, which is to be specialized and to find these people (terrorists) as they hide around the world."All rights reserved. © 2005 Agence France-Presse. Sections of the information displayed on this page (dispatches, photographs, logos) are protected by intellectual property rights owned by Agence France-Presse. As a consequence, you may not copy, reproduce, modify, transmit, publish, display or in any way commercially exploit any of the content of this section without the prior written consent of Agence France-Presse.