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High school students beware of military recruiters' promises

| March 30, 2007 12:00 AM

To the Editor:

High school students who are considering the delayed-entry program of the military - juniors and seniors to enlist before graduation from high school - beware of five points before signing your contract.

If you are considering joining the military and a recruiter tells you it will be a 4- to 6-year commitment, it is an 8-year commitment.

The military is having trouble filling its combat quota for Iraq, so you may be offered unrealistic promises of money for school or a choice of careers and told you won't be sent to Iraq. Recruiters cannot make such promises. You will be sent where the military needs you.

If you are mentally or physically wounded during your military service, you are not guaranteed adequate medical care when you come home.

Make sure everything your recruiter promises is in writing.

If you have already signed up for the delayed enlistment program and change your mind, you can get out of the contract.

There are alternatives to military service such as Job Corps, Americorps, Conservation Corps and Vista. You will earn a small stipend and gain job skills transferable to the civilian world.

If you have questions or concerns, contact Just Don't Go Montana representatives who are veterans, teachers, parents and students.

You can call Jo Anne Thun at 449-7971, Steve Bowers at 457-9925, Cindy Burke at 459-1332, Felomina Garvin at 443-3359 or Wayne Lewis at 449-1273.

Jo Anne Thun

Helena