Death cult recruiting children
Posted by: Desertphile ()
Date: June 10, 2005 11:13AM



For mom Marcia Cobb and her teenage son Axel, the white letters USMC on their caller ID soon spelled, "Don't answer the phone!"

Marine recruiters began a relentless barrage of calls to Axel as soon as the mellow, compliant Sedro-Woolley High School grad had cut his 17th birthday cake. And soon it was nearly impossible to get the seekers of a few good men off the line.

With early and late calls ringing in their ears, Marcia tried using call blocking. And that's when she learned her first hard lesson. You can't block calls from the government, her server said. So, after pleas to "Please stop calling" went unanswered, the family's "do not answer" order ensued.

But warnings and liquid crystal lettering can fade. So, two weeks ago when Marcia was cooking dinner Axel goofed and answered the call. And, faster than you can say "semper fi," an odyssey kicked into action that illustrates just how desperate some of the recruiters we've read about really are to fill severely sagging quotas.

Let what we learned serve as a warning to other moms, dads and teens, the Cobbs now say. Even if your kids actually may want to join the military, if they hope to do it on their own terms, after a deep breath and due consideration, repeat these words after them: "No," "Not now" and "Back off!"

"I've been trained to be pretty friendly. I guess you might even say I'm kind of passive," Axel told me last week, just after his mother and older sister had tracked him to a Seattle testing center and sprung him on a ruse.

The next step of Axel's misadventure came when he heard about a cool "chin-ups" contest in Bellingham, where the prize was a free Xbox. The now 18-year-old Skagit Valley Community College student dragged his tail feathers home uncharacteristically late that night. And, in the morning, Marcia learned the Marines had hosted the event and "then had him out all night, drilling him to join."

A single mom with a meager income, Marcia raised her kids on the farm where, until recently, she grew salad greens for restaurants.

Axel's father, a Marine Corps vet who served in Vietnam, died when Axel was 4.

Clearly the recruiters knew all that and more.

"You don't want to be a burden to your mom," they told him. "Be a man." "Make your father proud." Never mind that, because of his own experience in the service, Marcia says enlistment for his son is the last thing Axel's dad would have wanted.

The next weekend, when Marcia went to Seattle for the Folklife Festival and Axel was home alone, two recruiters showed up at the door.

Axel repeated the family mantra, but he was feeling frazzled and worn down by then. The sergeant was friendly but, at the same time, aggressively insistent. This time, when Axel said, "Not interested," the sarge turned surly, snapping, "You're making a big (bleeping) mistake!"

Next thing Axel knew, the same sergeant and another recruiter showed up at the LaConner Brewing Co., the restaurant where Axel works. And before Axel, an older cousin and other co-workers knew or understood what was happening, Axel was whisked away in a car.

"They said we were going somewhere but I didn't know we were going all the way to Seattle," Axel said.

Just a few tests. And so many free opportunities, the recruiters told him.

He could pursue his love of chemistry. He could serve anywhere he chose and leave any time he wanted on an "apathy discharge" if he didn't like it. And he wouldn't have to go to Iraq if he didn't want to.

At about 3:30 in the morning, Alex was awakened in the motel and fed a little something. Twelve hours later, without further sleep or food, he had taken a battery of tests and signed a lot of papers he hadn't gotten a chance to read. "Just formalities," he was told. "Sign here. And here. Nothing to worry about."

By then Marcia had "freaked out."

She went to the Burlington recruiting center where the door was open but no one was home. So she grabbed all the cards and numbers she could find, including the address of the Seattle-area testing center.

Then, with her grown daughter in tow, she high-tailed it south, frantically phoning Axel whose cell phone had been confiscated "so he wouldn't be distracted during tests."

Axel's grandfather was in the hospital dying, she told the people at the desk. He needed to come home right away. She would have said just about anything.

But, even after being told her son would be brought right out, her daughter spied him being taken down a separate hall and into another room. So she dashed down the hall and grabbed him by the arm.

"They were telling me I needed to 'be a man' and stand up to my family," Axel said.

What he needed, it turned out, was a lawyer.

Five minutes and $250 after an attorney called the recruiters, Axel's signed papers and his cell phone were in the mail.

My request to speak with the sergeant who recruited Axel and with the Burlington office about recruitment procedures went unanswered.

And so should your phone, Marcia Cobb advised. Take your own sweet time. Keep your own counsel. And, if you see USMC on caller ID, remember what answering the call could mean.

Death cult recruiting children
Posted by: rrmoderator ()
Date: June 10, 2005 05:16PM

The Marince Corp is hardly a "death cult" and does not fit the definition of a destructive cult.

See []

Cults by definition have a living leader that defines them and is an absolute authority without accountability.

See []

The Marine Corp. has accountability to democratically elected officials.

And there is little if any parallel to see between this branch of the US military and establihed cults discussed within the Ross Institute database.

See []

But a terrorist organization like al Qaeda led by an absolute authority figure like bin Laden can easily be seen as a cult.

See []

Death cult recruiting children
Posted by: Desertphile ()
Date: June 22, 2005 11:44PM

[b:d0cb5380ce]Yet more cult behavior.[/b:d0cb5380ce]


From The New York Times, 6/16/05:

Uncle Sam Really Wants You


With the situation in Iraq deteriorating and the willingness of Americans to serve in the armed forces declining, a little-known Army publication called the "School Recruiting Program Handbook" is becoming increasingly important, and controversial.

The handbook is the recruiter's bible, the essential guide for those who have to go into the nation's high schools and round up warm bodies to fill the embarrassingly skimpy ranks of the Army's basic training units.

The handbook declares forthrightly, "The goal is school ownership that can only lead to a greater number of Army enlistments."

What I was not able to find in the handbook was anything remotely like the startlingly frank comments of a sergeant at Fort Benning, Ga., who was quoted in the May 30 issue of The Army Times.

He was addressing troops in the seventh week of basic training, and the paper reported the scene as follows:

" 'Does anybody know what posthumous means?' Staff Sgt. Andre Allen asked the 150 infantrymen-in-training, members of F Company, 1st Battalion, 19th Infantry Regiment.

"A few hands went up, but he answered his own question.

" 'It means after death. Some of you are going to get medals that way,' he said matter-of-factly, underscoring the possibility that some of them would be sent to combat and not return."

That's the honest message recruits get once they're in.

The approach recommended by the recruiting handbook is somewhat different.

It's much softer.

Recruiters trying to sign up high school students are urged to schmooze, schmooze, schmooze.

"The football team usually starts practicing in August," the handbook says.

"Contact the coach and volunteer to assist in leading calisthenics or calling cadence during team runs."

"Homecoming normally happens in October," the handbook says.

"Coordinate with the homecoming committee to get involved with the parade."

Recruiters are urged to deliver doughnuts and coffee to the faculty once a month, and to eat lunch in the school cafeteria several times a month.

And the book recommends that they assiduously cultivate the students that other students admire:

"Some influential students such as the student president or the captain of the football team may not enlist; however, they can and will provide you with referrals who will enlist."

It's not known how aware parents are that recruiters are inside public high schools aggressively trying to lure their children into wartime service.

But not all schools get the same attention.

Those that get the royal recruitment treatment tend to be the ones with students whose families are less affluent than most.

Schools with kids from wealthier families (and a high percentage of collegebound students) are not viewed as good prospects by military recruiters.

It's as if those schools had posted signs at the entrances saying, "Don't bother."

The kids in those schools are not the kids who fight America's wars.

Now, with the death toll in Iraq continuing to mount, it's getting harder to sign up even the less affluent kids.

So the recruitment effort in the target schools has intensified.

Recruiters, already driven in some cases to the brink of nervous exhaustion, are following the handbook guidelines more rigorously than ever.

"If you wait until they're seniors, it's probably too late," the book says.

It also says, "Don't forget the administrative staff. ... Have something to give them (pen, calendar, cup, donuts, etc.) and always remember secretary's week, with a card or flowers."

The sense of desperation is palpable: "Get involved with local Boy Scout troops.

Scoutmasters are typically happy to get any assistance you can offer.

Many scouts are [high school] students and potential enlistees or student influencers."

One of the many problems here is that adolescents should not be hounded by military recruiters under any circumstances, and they shouldn't be pursued at all without the full knowledge and consent of parents or guardians.

Let the Army be honest and upfront in its recruitment.

War is not child's play, and warriors shouldn't be assembled through the use of seductive sales pitches to youngsters too immature to make an informed decision on matters that might well result in their having to kill others, or being killed themselves.

Death cult recruiting children
Posted by: rrmoderator ()
Date: June 22, 2005 11:56PM

Sorry--still not a "cult."

The previously posted links make this point.

Death cult recruiting children
Posted by: star22 ()
Date: June 23, 2005 02:26AM

IMO I don't appreciate someone coming on this board, saying that our armed forces are a cult. My boyfriend is in Iraq fighting for your freedom to say these things. Neither him nor I would agree with your posts, and I don't think I am the only one who feels this way.

You have not proved a vaild point in either of your posts.

Death cult recruiting children
Posted by: rrmoderator ()
Date: June 23, 2005 05:20AM

Agreed. And doesn't make much sense either.

Death cult recruiting children
Posted by: Keir ()
Date: July 16, 2005 11:56AM

.... My boyfriend is in Iraq fighting for your freedom to say these things. .

That doesnt make sense?

Death cult recruiting children
Posted by: rrmoderator ()
Date: July 16, 2005 07:50PM


The topics on this website are not US foreign policy and/or politics.

This is a message board focused on other subjects.

If you wish to comment about Iraq and US policies you should find another board.

Death cult recruiting children
Posted by: Keir ()
Date: July 17, 2005 10:46AM


The topics on this website are not US foreign policy and/or politics.

This is a message board focused on other subjects.

If you wish to comment about Iraq and US policies you should find another board.

Should it only apply to me? What I'm saying is that it just didnt make sense to begin with. Shouldnt Star22's remark she have been related to cults?????

Death cult recruiting children
Posted by: Keir ()
Date: July 17, 2005 10:48AM

As for the marines being a "death cult". I really have a hard time believing it so. They are not privatly controlled and are funded by the public.

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