When the military voids the draft - East Valley Tribune: Opinion

When the military voids the draft

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Posted: Tuesday, July 29, 2008 9:56 pm | Updated: 11:54 pm, Fri Oct 7, 2011.

The Army did the right thing for the right reason, but the way it was handled verged on the cruel.

West Point had a standout defensive back, Caleb Campbell, whom the Detroit Lions drafted in the seventh round. Initially, the Army was delighted at the publicity and the recruiting potential. Then, literally on the eve of training camp, the Army told Campbell he would have to serve at least two years of active duty before he could apply for early release.

The Navy and the Air Force had been peeved at the Army's exception for Campbell, who will return to the academy as a graduate assistant football coach. And if the Army releases him in two years, he's young enough to have another try at the pros.

Those going into the service academies make a serious commitment, more so than contemporaries at other schools. In peacetime, perhaps, considerable flexibility could be allowed, but a strained military is now fighting two wars. The Army made the right call.

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