A Bonus Insult to Veterans


photo-chris-kaufman-appeal-democrat-via-associated-pressSoldiers in the California Army National Guard stand in formation as their members are deployed to Afghanistan, in 2012.CreditChris Kaufman/Appeal-Democrat, via Associated Press


“The program to claw back military signing bonuses should never have happened.

When confidence in military opportunities is lost, the all-volunteer-force model fails.What is clear is that the roughly 9,700 veterans did not cause this problem but, instead, honored their commitments faithfully.

The hounding of nearly 10,000 California National Guard veterans to repay money that was mistakenly given for re-enlisting at the height of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars was not just ungrateful. It was poor strategy.

Imagine being a recent high school or college graduate considering career options. Your recruiter promises you a generous bonus in exchange for a few years of being told where to live, where to work and what time to wake up — while, by the way…

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