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Military failing to recruit; have not faced this poor of a labor market since military became volunteer based in 1973

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Alabama Republican Senator Tommy Tuberville said the United States’ inability to make military recruitment numbers is a “national security emergency.” Since the National Guard Association of the United States issued a statement June 28 explaining that every branch of the U.S. military has been having difficulty meeting recruiting goals for fiscal year 2022.

Struggling the most is the Army, which stated they have only recruited 40% of its total goal thus far in fiscal year 2022 with only three months left. A devastating reality is not just that the military is unable to recruit prospects, but that the number of qualified candidates and recruits are severely lacking.

The Army’s official website made the terrifying announcement that they have not faced this tough of a labor market since the military became completely volunteer based in 1973. “71% of youth do not qualify for military service because of obesity, drugs, physical and mental health problems, misconduct, and aptitude,” according to the Army recruiting website.

Another blow to recruiting which was pointed out by Senator Tuberville is that many recruits are ineligible due to their refusal (often upon religious ground, he said) to get the Covid-19 vaccinations. The Senator said he will continue to push for hearings on the issue with the Senate Armed Services Committee, on which he serves.

The Alabama Daily News reports on specifics, as well as the role the Biden administration has played into what has become a national security emergency:

The Army has shown hesitation to grant religious exemptions for its current soldiers. The branch released a statement in June along with data that showed that 4,736 active soldiers had filed for permanent religious exemptions from the vaccine as of June 23. Only 16 of those have been approved, and 1,185 have been denied.

As of June 23, the Army stated that 1,037 soldiers have been “separated” for refusing to receive the Covid vaccine.

Tuberville also cited a specific incident in February 2021 that he said “demoralized our men and women in uniform.”

In February 2021, Secretary of Defense Austin ordered the entire Department of Defense to stand down for one day and complete education and training on extremism. A work group was later developed in April to look further into the issue of extremism within the U.S. military, and the protocols and training materials were revised when the workforce released findings in December.

“This is an insult to the very people who pledge their lives to support and defend our country,” Tuberville said of the required anti-extremism training.

“Our military are not extremists; they are heroes.”

He said he believes the Biden administration is going about military recruiting in all the wrong ways, and that the withdrawal from Afghanistan is an important factor in the low recruiting numbers.

“American defeat and retreat does not inspire young people to sign up for our armed forces,” he said.

Tuberville joined other Republican Senators in calling out the Biden administration for trying to build a “woke Army.”

Diversity, equity, and inclusion training has been added to military curriculum and the ideas have been implemented in a series of army recruiting videos on YouTube.

Tuberville said these political ad campaigns are not helping inspire young recruits to enlist.

“We know what works: patriotism – pride in our country,” he said.

The Senator said he will continue to push for hearings regarding the issue. He serves on the Senate Armed Services Committee.

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Middle East

U.S. giving millions to Taliban in Afghanistan

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Taliban

After two decades at war with the Taliban, the U.S. government is now sending millions of taxpayer dollars to the terrorist group, reports the Center Square. The Taliban resumed power in Afghanistan immediately after the chaotic and deadly withdrawal of U.S. troops earlier in the Biden administration.

A new federal watchdog report shows that the U.S. government has sent at least $11 million to the Taliban since the 2021 withdrawal of U.S. troops. But experts and even the federal watchdog estimate the number is much higher.

“The U.S. government has continued to be the largest international donor supporting the Afghan people since the former Afghan government collapsed and the Taliban returned to power in August 2021,” the federal watchdog, SIGAR, wrote in its report. “Since then, the U.S. government has provided more than $2.8 billion in humanitarian and development assistance to help the people of Afghanistan.”

SIGAR said that the $11 million figure is likely only “a fraction” of taxpayer dollars actually going to the Taliban.

“SIGAR also found that the $10.9 million paid by 38 U.S. Department of State, U.S. Agency for International Development, and U.S. Agency for Global Media implementing partners is likely only a fraction of the total amount of U.S. assistance funds provided to the Taliban in taxes, fees, duties, and utilities because UN agencies receiving U.S. funds did not collect data or provide relevant information about their subawardees’ payments,” the report said.

Much of that taxpayer funding is transferred to the Taliban goes through nongovernmental organizations receiving foreign aid.

“To carry out their programs, U.S. agencies rely heavily on nongovernmental organizations and public international organizations, such as the UN, to implement humanitarian and development assistance,” the report said. “Both the former Ghani administration and the current Taliban-controlled government benefited from U.S. aid by imposing taxes, fees, duties and utilities on implementing partners as a condition of operating in Afghanistan.”

In fact, the right-leaning legal group Judicial Watch released an investigation recently showing that the Taliban has created fake NGO’s to siphon away tax dollars. Judicial Watch estimates the actual taxpayer dollars received by the Taliban is much higher than $11 million.

Although the Taliban has banned education for girls, the U.S. continues to send hundreds of millions of dollars to Afghanistan for education.

From Judicial Watch:

Since the terrorist group returned to power in August 2021, Uncle Sam has continued to fund Afghanistan’s education sector through six programs that cost $185.2 million even though the Taliban has issued decrees drastically limiting access to education for girls and women as well as restricting women’s ability to work and other basic freedoms.

Nevertheless, the American taxpayer dollars keep flowing. In fiscal year 2023, which ended in September, the U.S. sent Taliban-ruled Afghanistan over $566 million in humanitarian assistance. Most of it was for emergency food but a chunk was classified as going to general humanitarian and health. More than $15 million went to a cause that is labeled “redacted” in the government records.

Besides its terrorist past, the Taliban also severely oppresses women and girls and denies an array of human rights.

“SIGAR has reported on the importance of U.S. funds being spent on U.S. priorities and not in ways that benefit the Taliban, which represses women and girls, denies the human rights of the Afghan people and remains unrecognized as a legitimate government by the U.S. government and the international community,” the report said.

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