The armed forces, already struggling to meet recruiting goals, are considering expanding the number of noncitizens in the ranks — including disputed proposals to open recruiting stations overseas and putting more immigrants on a faster track to US citizenship if they volunteer — according to Pentagon officials.
Foreign citizens serving in the US military is a highly charged issue, which could expose the Pentagon to criticism that it is essentially using mercenaries to defend the country. Other analysts voice concern that a large contingent of noncitizens under arms could jeopardize national security or reflect badly on Americans' willingness to serve in uniform.
Now, the US military has done this sort of thing for a while. (See Abolishing America (contd.): Foreign Legions?)
Now, my own take on this: if the US can't recruit US citizens into the military, maybe, just maybe there is a reason. Maybe these citizens don't really feel their government is protecting the interests of their families and communities.
I'm personally disgusted at the tendency of the US government to spend hundreds billions of dollars in the Middle East—while failing to properly develop energy resources in the US-or even provide serious incentives in that area. Playing shell games by handing out immigration rights to mecenaries adds to that disgust—and I won't be encouraging my son or relatives to volunteer for this particular crusade.
This story was also covered by Tom Reagan at the Christian Science Monitor.