Too Fat to Fight

Too Fat to Fight

by Jeff Davis

Thanks to hundreds of channels of Satellite entertainment, countless Internet websites and addictive games like Halo and Facebook farming, people are sitting glued to their chairs in front of a glowing screen more than ever. The result has been an increasing problem with obesity plaguing everyone from school children to senior citizens. One of the worst affected groups is the US Army.

Fox News reports: “US soldiers are going to extremes — taking diet pills and laxatives, even starving themselves and getting liposuction — in order to meet the military’s weight standards, the Army Times reported Monday. More than a third of uniformed men and women do not meet the Army’s weight standards, according to a 2009 military fitness report, and those officers are subjected to dreaded tape measurements to determine body fat percentage. If soldiers exceed the body fat limits, they cannot earn leadership roles or promotions, the paper said. Officers can even lose their jobs if they do not shed a significant amount weight in two months — a very real threat, considering about 24,000 soldiers were discharged between 1992 and 2007 for failure to meet weight standards, according to a report published in Military Medicine.”

Of course, the Army mess halls no doubt continue to serve high-starch and high calorie meals, as indeed they should since combat soldiers who are properly fit and performing do in fact need a high daily calorie intake. But more and more American soldiers actually never see the battlefield, or if they do they see it from behind a computer screen in an air-conditioned Forward Operating Base or from behind a desk.

According to one famous analysis, in the United States Army it now requires 70 support personnel of various kinds to support one actual combat soldier in the field. The most prized military skills these days are not learned on the rifle range or the obstacle course but in offices. The majority of serving soldiers are now basically uniformed administrators and bureaucrats and techies of various kinds. Like their civilian counterparts they live largely on a diet of American junk food, they don’t exercise, and so they become fat very early in life.

A problem our enemies, who live on rice and goat meat, don’t seem to have. Anybody ever see a fat Taliban?

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