In Foreign Policy's National Security section, Rosa Brooks notes that "military demographics change over time" and that while at one point "having an army full of young men made lots of sense," with the way modern warfare is shaping up to be, they may be the "least well-suited demographic groups." So why, she asks, "do we still focus on recruiting 18-year-olds?"
No one knows precisely what warfare will look like in the decades to come, but I'm pretty sure I know what it won't look like. It won't look like tanks sweeping across the plains of Eastern Europe. It won't look like Gettysburg, and it won't look like Homeric conflict outside the walls of Troy.
In other words, it won't be the kind of conflict that relies on mass, or favors the brawny over the brainy. It won't be the kind of conflict at which young males have traditionally excelled.
On the contrary. The skills the military is most likely to need in the future are precisely the skills that American young people in general -- and young males in particular -- are most likely to lack. The U.S. military will need people with technical experience and scientific know-how. It will also need people with foreign language and regional expertise and an anthropological cast of mind -- people who can operate comfortably and effectively surrounded by foreigners. And in the 24-7 media environment -- the era of the strategic corporal -- the military will, above all, need people with maturity and good judgment.
|3D Television Without 3D Glasses|
|It Is Becoming Increasingly Difficult to Get Lost|
|Facebook Has Gone Rogue: Time to Find an Alternative|
|Amazon Prime Air: Delivery of Packages Via Drones|
|Google Announces Android Wearables|
|Japanese Create Ice Cream That Does Not Melt|
|Amateur-Built Electric Car Going After Record Set by Tesla|
|“Banning polluting cars in 2040 or 2050 doesn’t actually look like a very bold move.”|
|Making a Movie Inside a Video Game|
|“This conversation about how technology is hijacking people is really catching on.”|
|Google Map Shows You the Most Photographed Areas of the World|
|“Our Internet handlers, not government, are using operant conditioning to modify our behaviour today.”|
|“Human and animal cells can be 3D printed into high-resolution tissue.”|
|“The shift from fuel and pistons to batteries and electric motors is unlikely to take that long.”|
|“During this phase of decline, the US was likely to go through a phase of reactionary 'fascism'.”|
|“Nobody is forcing the participants to stay, of course, but if they leave, they won’t be paid.”|
|“That science fiction future where robots can do what people and animals do may be closer than you think.”|