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Transition from conscription to a voluntary contract army.


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Hi, I have a question for those who found themselves in their country when they canceled conscription into the army, for voluntary service under a contract.


1) What this foreshadowed and became the reason ?
2) How did the army prepare for this and start a recruitment program on a contract basis ?
3) Were there opponents in the army to cancel conscription ?

It will be interesting to hear the opinion of those who know how it all happened.

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On 9/17/2021 at 7:39 PM, HUSKER2142 said:

Hi, I have a question for those who found themselves in their country when they canceled conscription into the army, for voluntary service under a contract.


1) What this foreshadowed and became the reason ?
2) How did the army prepare for this and start a recruitment program on a contract basis ?
3) Were there opponents in the army to cancel conscription ?

It will be interesting to hear the opinion of those who know how it all happened.

I guess the prime example would be US with its Vietnam\post Vietnam transition. Try looking for corresponding literature.

If I remember correctly they calculated that conscription army indirectly costs more to GDP growth than professional army due to labor and educational disruption. 

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Maybe also based on the stats that only a small minority of troops actually fired their weapons or contributed to the combat?  So, a small pro army with better training and discipline may be more combat effective than a large army full of folks who don't want to be there.

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In the UK, conscription has only been in place during the two World Wars and for a period after. As it's never been "the norm", I suspect the Forces just went back to the way things had always been, once it ended, without a great deal of fuss and disruption, particularly as it was tailed off over a few years.

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If about 15 years post-WW2 is 'a few years' for the UK experience then you are right.  My impression, caveated by the fact that I was too young to remember it, is that it was something that the services didn't really want but it was a definite need with a still large at that time worldwide footprint.  But also let's not forget the contribution of National Service personnel to Korea and Malaya among other bits of bother in the colonies.  Once the decision was made to cut down the UK's footprint around the world, the need no longer existed and the regulars could cover the commitments without also having the burden of a large percentage of personnel devoted to training large numbers of people every year only to see them spend at best 3/4 of their service in the trained and deployable force.

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To which period of time and region does Husker refer?

The question as such is by far to unclear, to wide to give a meaningful answer.

The conflict, but also coexistence, of „unvoluntary“  vs professional armies is probably thousands of years old. And it is, on the other hand, a completely normal phenomenon. A fitting British example maybe the deployment of the Fyrd with a back-bone of household warriors. Or the Us in Civil War times. Or European countries in WW1 and WW2 times.
Obviously, one finds it in many other places and periods, too, that the bulk of the forces was pressed or drafted into service in times of need, while the rulers preferred to rely on small professional armies in more peaceful times.

Edited by StieliAlpha
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