Army Lowers Recruiting Standards To Allow Soldiers With History Of Self-Mutilation, Bipolar Disorder

Tyler Durden's picture

Since the beginning of the year, much ink has been spilled about the Army’s increasingly desperate attempts to fill its lofty recruiting quota for fiscal year 2017-2018: That is, 80,000 new soldiers. To hit that number, the Army has repeatedly loosened its recruiting requirements. Last month, the military introduced a new policy that would forgive recruits with a history of marijuana use or certain marijuana related criminal violations...

...and now, the military is taking those efforts one step further, with USA Today reporting today that the Army has expanded its criteria for granting “waivers” to certain recruits who violate criteria related to mental-health violations like having a history of bipolar disorder, or self-mutilation. The military said this expansion is justified by the increasing availability of medical records allowing recruiters to analyze a potential recruit’s history in greater detail to make a more accurate assessment as to whether they’re fit to serve.

Here’s USA Today:

WASHINGTON – People with a history of “self-mutilation,” bipolar disorder, depression and drug and alcohol abuse can now seek waivers to join the Army under an unannounced policy enacted in August, according to documents obtained by USA TODAY.


The decision to open Army recruiting to those with mental health conditions comes as the service faces the challenging goal of recruiting 80,000 new soldiers through September 2018. To meet last year's goal of 69,000, the Army accepted more recruits who fared poorly on aptitude tests, increased the number of waivers granted for marijuana use and offered hundreds of millions of dollars in bonuses.


Expanding the waivers for mental health is possible in part because the Army now has access to more medical information about each potential recruit, Lt. Col. Randy Taylor, an Army spokesman, said in a statement. The Army issued the ban on waivers in 2009 amid an epidemic of suicides among troops.

While it's unclear how long this decision was under consideration, last year, Jeff Snow, the army major-general who is in charge of the branch’s recruiting program, revealed to AZCentral that only 3 in 10 individuals applying to join the Army actually meet the branch’s “rigorous” recruiting requirements. "The biggest challenge right now is the fact that only three in 10 can actually meet the requirements to actually join the military," said Maj. Gen. Jeffrey Snow, commanding general of United States Army Recruiting Command. "We talk about it in terms of the cognitive, the physical and the moral requirements to join the military, and it's tough. We have a very good Army; there's a desire to recruit quality into the Army."

The decision to open Army recruiting to those with mental health conditions comes as the service faces the challenging goal of recruiting 80,000 new soldiers through September 2018. To meet last year's goal of 69,000, the Army accepted more recruits who fared poorly on aptitude tests, increased the number of waivers granted for marijuana use and offered hundreds of millions of dollars in bonuses.

However, despite the Army's claims that it now possesses the tool's to conduct more advanced screenings of individual candidates, one expert on military waivers pointed out, no amount of precise data about recruits’ health history can definitively prevent those issue from resurfacing later. Self-mutilation is a particularly disruptive issue because it could set off alarms about potential suicide attempts or other similarly disruptive phenomenon.

But accepting recruits with those mental health conditions in their past carries risks, according to Elspeth Ritchie, a psychiatrist who retired from the Army as a colonel in 2010 and is an expert on waivers for military service. People with a history of mental health problems are more likely to have those issues resurface than those who do not, she said.


“It is a red flag,” she said. “The question is, how much of a red flag is it?


While bipolar disorder can be kept under control with medication, self-mutilation — where people slashing their skin with sharp instruments — may signal deeper mental health issues, according to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Health Disorders, which is published by the American Psychiatric Association.


If self-mutilation occurs in a military setting, Ritchie said, it could be disruptive for a unit. A soldier slashing his or her own skin could result in blood on the floor, the assumption of a suicide attempt and the potential need for medical evacuation from a war zone or other austere place.

In the past, recruits who received waivers have been responsible for some of the most embarrassing (and extremely heinous) incidents in recent army history. As USA Today pointed out, in 2006, an Iraqi girl was raped and her family killed by US soldiers, one of whom required waivers for minor criminal activity and poor educational background.

Still, new guidelines for screening potential recruits with histories that include self-mutilation make clear that the applicant must provide “appropriate documentation” to obtain the waiver, according to a September memo sent to Army commanders. Those requirements include a detailed statement from the applicant, medical records, evidence from an employer if the injury was job-related, photos submitted by the recruiter and a psychiatric evaluation and “clearance."

Slides for military officials who screen recruits show examples of people whose arms, legs and torsos have been scarred by self-mutilation.

"For all waivers," one memo states, "the burden of proof is on the applicant to provide a clear and meritorious case for why a waiver should be considered."

A spokeswoman for the military rigorously defended the new waiver protocol, arguing that, under the right circumstances, a waiver for self-mutilation could be justified.

“I can see a rationale that that shouldn’t be an absolute but could be a waiver,” she said.

Of course, given the escalating tension between the US and North Korea - and more recently the escalating tensions between Saudi Arabia and its chief geopolitical rival, Iran - the possibility that the US could engage in yet another armed conflict before the end of Trump's first term is looming over the Pentagon, not to mention the general public. Furthermore, Trump's decision to send another 4,000 military personnel to Afghanistan, not to mention the US's decision to send a contingent of military "advisers" to help combat terror networks in Northern and East Africa, means that the US's military entanglements have only continued to expand under Trump, despite his repeated promises during the campaign to adhere to an "America first" policy of nonintervention.

As these conflicts worsen, we doubt this will be the last time the military lowers its recruiting standards before Trump's first term is up.

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bigkahuna's picture

This is not going to work out for them.

peddling-fiction's picture

You probably will get mutilated in a war.

And your willingness to be mutilated has been noted.

IH8OBAMA's picture

Why not?  They let queers and transvestites in now.  I just hope they put them in separate units.

But then I believe 4 years of civil service should be required for every citizen.


SixIsNinE's picture

this is necessary - as we all know, according to the DSM,  everybody is mentally ill, thus eligible for the great and wondrous benefits of Big Pharma Drugs. 

also another way go keep the drugs prescriptions going whilst on active duty, ensuring billions more for the Big Pharma Cartels, and ensuring lifetime customers. The object is to get all active duties on drugs of some kind or other.


DEA on receivership and repeal the CSA.


NoDebt's picture

Gotta put the mental defectives somewhere.  Can't put them in asylums any more (Supreme Court said so).  Prisons are pretty damned full.  Overflow has to go somewhere.


dasein211's picture

I? heard there’s a bunch of rich kids not doing shit.

El Oregonian's picture

And to think it wasn't that long ago you would be 4-F'd for having flat feet...

My, how the mighty have fallen.

bluez's picture

Harvard School of Public Health -- Impact of fluoride on neurological development in children

July 25, 2012 — For years health experts have been unable to agree on whether fluoride in the drinking water may be toxic to the developing human brain. Extremely high levels of fluoride are known to cause neurotoxicity in adults, and negative impacts on memory and learning have been reported in rodent studies, but little is known about the substance’s impact on children’s neurodevelopment. In a meta-analysis, researchers from Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH) and China Medical University in Shenyang for the first time combined 27 studies and found strong indications that fluoride may adversely affect cognitive development in children. Based on the findings, the authors say that this risk should not be ignored, and that more research on fluoride’s impact on the developing brain is warranted.

It's working!

Richard Chesler's picture

So the plan is queers and transexuals will suck the enemy's cock to death?

Yes we can, lol

Justin Case's picture

Most of the killing is subcontracted out to their proxies, like ISIS and the other alphabet terrorist organizations. The current misfits are just for show. It's quantity not quality. The other misfits in the club are too fat. Send the transgender and gender neutral to Afganistan so they can grow a new pair.

IRC162's picture

There are Marines.

And then there's the rest.

PT's picture

Cutters = Psy-Ops -
"How can we torture these people?  Look what they do to themselves for fun!!!"
or alternative Psy-Ops where they hope to get the enemy to join them.

But yeah, when they send the criminally insane to the front-lines, enemy soldiers will be mutilated and then the US will be the nation of "Evil soldiers who torture their enemies" (errr, shit!  I've already forgotten Guatnamo or however you spell it) and then when the future history books are written, the US will be written down as the bad guys and no-one will complain about it.

Code Duello's picture

Good point but I'd bet that the next step in this degradation of military standards will be the acceptance of the prison folk you mentioned.  And then, tada, the "draft".  Lots of innocents left for the OneState to exploit.

Giant Meteor's picture

"Gotta put the mental defectives somewhere."

They can't all be politicians .....

nmewn's picture

Bi-polar disorder?

Oh this is going to require popcorn with extra artery clogging butter for sure!

peddling-fiction's picture

Focus your maniacal episodes towards combat duty.

And when depressed, play video games at the barracks.


You have to get in their "creative" MIC minds.

SixIsNinE's picture

and when the pentagram adopts the chinese behavior mod game as shown here:

truthfactory totally covered this chinese behavior mod game with the smartphones to get people to comply -

it should come as no surprise around here that this is what yuckerborg has been conspiring to rig fartbook up to emulate

sadly, as truthfactory cat concludes, we can see this working - and to extremes.


into a military environment and headsup display headgear units - recruits will be lining up around the Block to get in ! 

techpriest's picture

I know a lot of Chinese kids, and even the ones who are glued to their iPhones don't have that app. WeChat is already scary enough as it is.

serotonindumptruck's picture

Earlier this evening, the local news station anchors here in Eastern NC (Raleigh) were breathlessly headlining the election of two transgendered legislators to the NC Senate.

It was as if their enthusiastic virtue signalling would serve to convince the listeners that this was the most wonderful development since the dawn of humanity.

I still don't know what the word 'transgendered' even means, although it seems to be an indication of just how far our society has fallen.

When perverted freaks, who seem to be confused as to their biological gender are elected to political offices within society, apparently based solely upon their sexual preference, then I know that it won't be much longer before the collapse.


BarkingCat's picture

Fuck, and I was considering that as one of the places to move to.

Might as well hasten the takeover by Islam.

It will cure that all that shit in a hurry.

Chuck Walla's picture

Draft AntiFa, they seem to have aggression to work out and plenty of MJ violations, I'm sure.

kochevnik's picture

Self mutilation is requirement for Army recruit. Simply needs stranger to pull trigger then it is "courage" not shame

Omen IV's picture

why not cut to the chase and hire mass murderers - things will work out sooner or ...later

stinkhammer's picture

Paging Bradley Edward Manning to the white courtesy phone

peddling-fiction's picture

Holy Osiris, when mutilation gets personal and life changing

Pernicious Gold Phallusy's picture

Here, Dick! Dick! Dicky Dicky Dicky Dicky Dicky Dick! Dick, where are you?

Buck Johnson's picture

Yep, this isn't going to end well at all.


bigkahuna's picture

Bi-polar seems to be containable with proper medication - when it breaks loose though - that is a different story. Look for the numbers of "friendly fire" incidents and "code reds" to go up.

Cloud9.5's picture

Or us.  The unstable with training are exponentially more dangerous than the unstable without training.


Kidbuck's picture

Allowing women, fags, and trannies was a very slippery slope. What's next? Scouring cemeteries in hopes of recruiting zombies.

Theta_Burn's picture

We were better off with the queens and bull dykes.

Sounds suspiciously like front line/cannon fodder to me..


bardot63's picture

Instead of An Army of One, we'll get a platoon of Texas church shooters....

wisehiney's picture

The dude with the cross carved in his forehead said......

"This is my damn island!"

USA USA's picture

Cool Dude, I am gonna trip right down there and share a Doobie with the guy behind the desk!

Donald J. Trump's picture

"What is your major malfunction, numbnuts? Didn't Mommy and Daddy show you enough attention when you were a child?"

Catullus's picture

Wow. They have to cast an even wider net to get losers to join the army.

NoDebt's picture

"Government service" work is always where you put the mental defectives since the Supreme Court said you can't put them in asylums any more.  I don't know why the military has acted all high-and-mighty for so long but there is no way in HELL they are going to attract the "best and brightest".  They're the dumping ground.  Five notches below even the Postal Service.,



JibjeResearch's picture

Man... there will be more Bergdalh.... shameful...

lester1's picture

The Army lowered the standards years ago. They let in felons and sex offenders too!!

SixIsNinE's picture

you're thinking the Marines - that was a real long time ago


GunnyG's picture

Sorry, wrong answer. ONLY the Army takes in less than Mental Category I. The others refuse to accept. You'd probably be in Mental Cat V with the other morons.

Savvy's picture

The guy with the bucket of swill will be voted as swineherd no matter how many pigs he butchers for market.

FGopher's picture

"People with a history of “self-mutilation,” bipolar disorder, depression and drug and alcohol abuse can now seek waivers to join the Army..."

There are a multitude of very good reasons to not allow the Group W Bench people to serve. You can have a medical record that is five feet tall but if Leonard was batshit Bi-Polar two years ago, he's still going to be batshit Bi-Polar wearing the uniform. In the long run,  they would be better off hiring Hessians or Visigoths.

hoist the bs flag's picture

Uncle Scam takes what he can afford. empire is expensive

Lost in translation's picture

“In the long run, they would be better off hiring Hessians or Visigoths.”

Hence the Mexican invasion. Barbarian invaders for the New Age.

jack stephan's picture

This is just...too...easy....

So begin, the confiscation drums are beating yet again.  Every two months more or less.

And the army eventually will be the....invasion force.  

I use this term loosely, most are bags of meat with expensive shit and zero idea what to do or why it works or what happens if half the puffed up chest bravado gets the sledgehammer.

Everyone has a plan til they get punched in the face.

Myself included, it's no time to get arrogant with bullets at high speed is involved, I'm not Ronald speirs.

So some Wichita emo kid mc pillhead, who can barely keep attention for instruction, or guidance or independent thinking is going to be the wave of confiscated flunkies after the local cops.

Hmmmmmm.....i know lots of things, at least without liquor.

Ask me in the morning during coffee if this sounds like a good idea I'd probably throw it at you. 

What??? I got your attention now right, melting eyelids is a good walker upper, 

No, it is not a good idea.

RozKo's picture

So you give someone with a mental illness high powered weapons, that should end well... 

CompassionateConservative's picture

Uh, that's what you did when you voted for tRump.  If you're some white nationalist nazi who opposes white genocide through mass immigration and miscegenation with dumb subhuman and worthless niggers, nuclear war, pedophilia, faggotry, and global Judeo-bolshevism then you are nothing but a sick racist scum bag!

Captain Mack's picture

Snowflake libertards got trannys muslims nut job femnazis beta males satanic globalist pedophiles and hollyweird scum on their team! you libertards put together one HELL of a team scumbags!!