Saturday, May 23, 2009

Great moments in draft history

Yay for volunteer armies:

Friedman used his polemical powers to win the commission over to his belief in an all-volunteer army. Vietnam troop commander William Westmoreland gruffly announced during one commission hearing that he was not interested in leading an army of “mercenaries.” Friedman coolly replied, “Would you rather command an army of slaves?”

Westmoreland bristled. “I don’t like to hear our patriotic draftees referred to as slaves,” he said. “I don’t like to hear our patriotic volunteers referred to as mercenaries,” Friedman snapped back—and pointed out that if they were, then he was a mercenary professor and Westmoreland a mercenary general.