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US military to recruit immigrants, offer citizenship: report

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  • US military to recruit immigrants, offer citizenship: report

    US military to recruit immigrants, offer citizenship: report

    WASHINGTON - The Pentagon will begin recruiting skilled immigrants with temporary status in the United States and offer them an express path to citizenship, The New York Times reported Sunday.

    Citing military officials, the paper said that under the proposed program, recruits would be able to become US citizens in as little as six months.

    Permanent residents, or holders of so-called "green cards," have been eligible to enlist in the US military for a long time.

    But for the first time since the Vietnam War, the military, which is stretched thin due to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, will now open its doors to immigrants with temporary visas if they have lived in the United States for a minimum of two years, the report said.

    Recruiters expect that temporary immigrants will have more education, foreign language skills and professional expertise than many Americans, helping the military to fill vacancies in medical care, language interpretation and field intelligence analysis, The Times wrote.

    "The American Army finds itself in a lot of different countries where cultural awareness is critical," Lieutenant General Benjamin Freakley, the top recruitment officer for the army, told the paper.

    "There will be some very talented folks in this group," he said.

    The program will be first limited to 1,000 enlistees nationwide in its first year and mostly involve the army, the report said.

    If the pilot program succeeds, it will expand for all branches of the military and eventually provide as many as 14,000 volunteers a year, or about one in six recruits, The Times noted.

  • #2
    min 2 yrs residency??!..drat.. they should follow the French legion model and offer citizenship to immigrants who make it through the selections and serves for a min 5/7 yrs...... is a good way of giving all the illegal immigrants there an opportunity for they would've "earned" it


    • #3
      How useful would this be

      I am assuming that the "immigrants" are visa holders, not illegal. Is that a correct assumption? If that holds true I wonder what this would actually acheive.

      The average H1B holder would be here at the earliest, at the age of around 25, but more probably at ages higher than that. Given that most of these guys are the "studious" types, would their age and physical constitution not make them unsuitable for military work, even for non-combat operations?

      As for the L1 holders, the very criteria of their having a visa vanishes as soon as they are employed by anyone else other than their current employers. Some kind of legal jugglery is required to make them eligible, and they would also hit the age/ fitness barrier like the H1 folks.

      That of course still leaves the F1 (student) pool, who are probably the target of this program anyway, as they would be younger, fitter and more open to getting absorbed within the US.

      I think Mercenary is right, the FFL offers a good model. In other words, more mercenaries
      "Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able? Then he is not omnipotent. Is he able, but not willing? Then he is malevolent. Is he both able and willing? Then whence cometh evil? Is he neither able nor willing? Then why call him God?" ~ Epicurus