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The Challenge of Filling the Army's Ranks

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The Challenge of Filling the Army's Ranks

5 Oktober 2023

In the 1980s the U.S. Army launched a recruiting drive around the slogan, "Be all you can be." They've relaunched the slogan now as the push is on to make up for a drop off in recruitment. The Army is having a hard time convincing potential recruits that the military is the best place to reach their full potential. Last year, the Army was 15,000 soldiers short of its recruiting goal. Army surveys have found that many potential recruits don't want to join because they fear getting wounded or killed, even though the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq are over. And the tight labor market means recruits have lots of other job opportunities. NPR's Mary Louise Kelly speaks with Secretary of the Army Christine Wormuth about the struggle to staff up the largest branch of the U.S. military. NPR's Pentagon Correspondent Tom Bowman provides additional reporting for this episode. Email us at Learn more about sponsor message choices: NPR Privacy Policy


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