EM EM : monthly magazine - 01.07.1941, Blaðsíða 6

EM EM : monthly magazine - 01.07.1941, Blaðsíða 6
6 Em Em Army Does Not Use'Kid Qlqves ■ On “Selected” By CHARLES P. STEVVART, -r, Central Press Columnist . ' TO SPEAK of a young man as having been drafted into Uncle military service or to rcfer him as a conscript almost on being a severely punish- able offense these times. The chap by no m e a n s is drafted. Heis selected, which is a great com- pliment to him. It proves that he’s physically and mentally a fine human specimen, or he would not have passed exam- Charles P. jination by the Stewart, selective service _ a u thorities. Having done so, he becomes a se- lectee. He ought to be proud of it. i Drafted? A conscript? Heavens, no! Those are unpleasant terms. They hint at compulsion. All sorts of pains were taken to dodge their employment, in the wording of the selective service law. Anyone who uses either one of them is due for a stern calling down from selective service headquarters. One of these headquarters’ main ' ideas is • to make the training tremendously popular. Oh, yes. It’s all right, if you choose, to call a selectee a' trainee instead. ' /__ i When a boy has the good fortune to get by the board he initially ap- pears before, he’s questioned as to any peacetime craft he may hap- pen to be skilled in, and if it’s of a nature calculated to make him es- pecially useful in some particular line of military activity, the board recommends him to the army folk accordingly. It’s nicer for him to get into one of these specialists’ branches than to serve as an ordi- nary buck private in the ranks, where he’s likely to be directly shot at if we actually become in- volved in war. ________ L The army people, however, don’t invariably act on the original board’s recommendation. þ (í1 > j This Can Happen [j Por instance, suppose a lad’s a competent auto mechanic. The board indorses him as a machlnist. Ha renorts fnr dutv. The hárd- böiíea army omcer m cnarge cx- amines his credentials. Then he says “O. k. Come out and take a look' at one of our tanks nearby. See if you can work it.” Now. a tank’s operated very difi ferently from an automobile. If hasn’t the kind of engineering that an auto has. Except that they’re both automotive. tanks and 'autos have precious little in eommon. So the kid completely muffs his test. ^ ^ “Such being the case," says the officer, “you’re due for four prelim- inary months of regular rank-and- file training. By then maybe you’ll have learned enough for a bit classier duty.” Why don’t they assign that se- lectee to an auto in preference to a tank? Answering that question, it’s rather common talk that profes- sional army men areri’t entirely in sympathy with the home board’s policy of representing military life as something perfectly heavenly. The professionals have their or- ders, to be sure, to treat selectees with all consideration. They carry out these instructions, too, in pub- lic. In herding a bunch of rookies into their coaches in railroad sta- tions, with lots of civilian bystand- ers looking on and listening, offl- cerdom is as polite as punch. The inductees (that’s another name it’s permissible to call ’em by) hava elegant accommodations also — Pullmans and all that sort of stuff. But when they arrive at canton- ments it begins to be, “You’re ir. the army now.” At least, so I hear from some of the professionals themselves. No Coddliug The professionals unmistakably don’t believe in coddling. They don’t believe in it for the selectees’ own good. In essentials they’re admirably provided for. They’re fed on the fat of the land — better, many of them, than they probably were fed on where they came from. Delica- cies are included—gumdrops, etc. “How, though,” queried a young shavetail professional I talked with the other day, “are we going to make soldiers out of selectees by handling ’em as softies until, may- be, they’re chucked into action, and have to shoot and be shot at?" There’s no implication that the trainees are deliberatelv hazed bv To Eire for U. S. Major John W. Wofford, cavalry officer, will be the first military at- tache ever sent to Eire. Washing- ton officials declared the appoint- ment was necessitated by the in- creased duties of the attache in London, not by the expectation ol war coming to Eire. uic piuj.caaiunai gang m canion- ments, but it’s extremely obvious that the regular fighters. down to top sergeants, anyway, are doing their best to toughen ’em up. They have to do it surreptitiöusly, how-* ever. They could be openly sum-J mary with drafted conscripts, but not with inductees, trainees and' selectees./ ~


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