Conscription

Conscription

Overview
Conscription is the compulsory enlistment of people in some sort of national service
National service
National service is a common name for mandatory government service programmes . The term became common British usage during and for some years following the Second World War. Many young people spent one or more years in such programmes...

, most often military service
Military service
Military service, in its simplest sense, is service by an individual or group in an army or other militia, whether as a chosen job or as a result of an involuntary draft . Some nations require a specific amount of military service from every citizen...

. Conscription dates back to antiquity and continues in some countries to the present day under various names. The modern system of near-universal national conscription for young men dates to the French Revolution
French Revolution
The French Revolution , sometimes distinguished as the 'Great French Revolution' , was a period of radical social and political upheaval in France and Europe. The absolute monarchy that had ruled France for centuries collapsed in three years...

 in the 1790s, where it became the basis of a very large and powerful military
Military
A military is an organization authorized by its greater society to use lethal force, usually including use of weapons, in defending its country by combating actual or perceived threats. The military may have additional functions of use to its greater society, such as advancing a political agenda e.g...

. Most Europe
Europe
Europe is, by convention, one of the world's seven continents. Comprising the westernmost peninsula of Eurasia, Europe is generally 'divided' from Asia to its east by the watershed divides of the Ural and Caucasus Mountains, the Ural River, the Caspian and Black Seas, and the waterways connecting...

an nations later copied the system in peacetime, so that men at a certain age would serve 1–3 years on active duty
Active duty
Active duty refers to a full-time occupation as part of a military force, as opposed to reserve duty.-Pakistan:The Pakistan Armed Forces are one of the largest active service forces in the world with almost 610,000 full time personnel due to the complex and volatile nature of Pakistan's...

, then transfer to the reserve force
Military reserve force
A military reserve force is a military organization composed of citizens of a country who combine a military role or career with a civilian career. They are not normally kept under arms and their main role is to be available to fight when a nation mobilizes for total war or to defend against invasion...

.

In China, the State of Qin instituted universal military service following the registration of every household.
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Timeline

1798   Conscription is made mandatory in France by the Jourdan law.

1863   United States begins its first military draft; exemptions cost $300.

1863   New York Draft Riots: in New York City, opponents of conscription begin three days of rioting which will be later regarded as the worst in United States history.

1916   Prime Minister of Australia Billy Hughes is expelled from the Labor Party over his support for conscription.

1917   World War I: The Selective Service Act of 1917 is passed, giving the President of the United States the power of conscription.

1917   World War I: Conscription begins in the United States as "Army registration day".

 
Encyclopedia
Conscription is the compulsory enlistment of people in some sort of national service
National service
National service is a common name for mandatory government service programmes . The term became common British usage during and for some years following the Second World War. Many young people spent one or more years in such programmes...

, most often military service
Military service
Military service, in its simplest sense, is service by an individual or group in an army or other militia, whether as a chosen job or as a result of an involuntary draft . Some nations require a specific amount of military service from every citizen...

. Conscription dates back to antiquity and continues in some countries to the present day under various names. The modern system of near-universal national conscription for young men dates to the French Revolution
French Revolution
The French Revolution , sometimes distinguished as the 'Great French Revolution' , was a period of radical social and political upheaval in France and Europe. The absolute monarchy that had ruled France for centuries collapsed in three years...

 in the 1790s, where it became the basis of a very large and powerful military
Military
A military is an organization authorized by its greater society to use lethal force, usually including use of weapons, in defending its country by combating actual or perceived threats. The military may have additional functions of use to its greater society, such as advancing a political agenda e.g...

. Most Europe
Europe
Europe is, by convention, one of the world's seven continents. Comprising the westernmost peninsula of Eurasia, Europe is generally 'divided' from Asia to its east by the watershed divides of the Ural and Caucasus Mountains, the Ural River, the Caspian and Black Seas, and the waterways connecting...

an nations later copied the system in peacetime, so that men at a certain age would serve 1–3 years on active duty
Active duty
Active duty refers to a full-time occupation as part of a military force, as opposed to reserve duty.-Pakistan:The Pakistan Armed Forces are one of the largest active service forces in the world with almost 610,000 full time personnel due to the complex and volatile nature of Pakistan's...

, then transfer to the reserve force
Military reserve force
A military reserve force is a military organization composed of citizens of a country who combine a military role or career with a civilian career. They are not normally kept under arms and their main role is to be available to fight when a nation mobilizes for total war or to defend against invasion...

.

In China, the State of Qin instituted universal military service following the registration of every household. This allowed huge armies to be levied, and was instrumental in the creation of the Qin Empire that conquered the whole of China in 221BC.

Conscription is controversial, because of conscientious objection to service, or political objection to service for a disliked government, or an unpopular war, and because it violates individual rights. Those conscripted may evade service, sometimes by leaving the country. Some selection systems accommodate these attitudes by providing alternative service
Alternative service
Alternative service is a form of national service performed in lieu of conscription for various reasons, such as conscientious objection, inadequate health, or political reasons. See "labour battalion" for examples of the latter case...

 outside combat
Combat
Combat, or fighting, is a purposeful violent conflict meant to establish dominance over the opposition, or to terminate the opposition forever, or drive the opposition away from a location where it is not wanted or needed....

-operations roles or even outside the military, such as Zivildienst
Zivildienst
Zivildienst is the civilian branch of the national service systems in Austria and Switzerland. In Germany as well Zivildienst was the alternative service to military service until suspension of conscription in 2011...

 in Austria
Austria
Austria , officially the Republic of Austria , is a landlocked country of roughly 8.4 million people in Central Europe. It is bordered by the Czech Republic and Germany to the north, Slovakia and Hungary to the east, Slovenia and Italy to the south, and Switzerland and Liechtenstein to the...

 and Switzerland
Switzerland
Switzerland name of one of the Swiss cantons. ; ; ; or ), in its full name the Swiss Confederation , is a federal republic consisting of 26 cantons, with Bern as the seat of the federal authorities. The country is situated in Western Europe,Or Central Europe depending on the definition....

.

As of the early 21st century, many states no longer conscript soldiers, relying instead upon professional militaries with volunteers
Volunteer military
A volunteer military or all-volunteer military is one which derives its manpower from volunteers rather than conscription or mandatory service. A country may offer attractive pay and benefits through military recruitment to attract volunteers...

 enlisted to meet the demand for troops. The ability to rely on such an arrangement, however, presupposes some degree of predictability with regard to both war-fighting requirements and the scope of hostilities. Many states that have abolished conscription therefore still reserve the power to resume it during war
War
War is a state of organized, armed, and often prolonged conflict carried on between states, nations, or other parties typified by extreme aggression, social disruption, and usually high mortality. War should be understood as an actual, intentional and widespread armed conflict between political...

time or times of crisis. In the United States
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

, conscription, also called "the draft
Conscription in the United States
Conscription in the United States has been employed several times, usually during war but also during the nominal peace of the Cold War...

", ended in 1973, but males between 18 and 25 are required to register with the Selective Service System
Selective Service System
The Selective Service System is a means by which the United States government maintains information on those potentially subject to military conscription. Most male U.S. citizens and male immigrant non-citizens between the ages of 18 and 25 are required by law to have registered within 30 days of...

 to enable a reintroduction of conscription if necessary.

Ilkum


Around the reign of Hammurabi
Hammurabi
Hammurabi Hammurabi Hammurabi (Akkadian from Amorite ʻAmmurāpi, "the kinsman is a healer", from ʻAmmu, "paternal kinsman", and Rāpi, "healer"; (died c...

 (1792-1750 BCE), the Babylonian Empire used a system of conscription called Ilkum. Under the system those eligible were required to serve in the royal army in time of war. During times of peace they were instead required to provide labour for other activities of the state. In return for this service, those subject to it gained the right to hold land. It is possible that this right was not to hold land per se but specific land supplied by the state.

Various forms of avoiding military service are recorded. While it was outlawed by the Code of Hammurabi
Code of Hammurabi
The Code of Hammurabi is a well-preserved Babylonian law code, dating to ca. 1780 BC . It is one of the oldest deciphered writings of significant length in the world. The sixth Babylonian king, Hammurabi, enacted the code, and partial copies exist on a human-sized stone stele and various clay...

, the hiring of substitutes appears to have been practiced both before and after the creation of the code. Later records show that Ilkum commitments could become regularly traded. In other places, people simply left their towns to avoid their Ilkum service. Another option was to sell Ilkum lands and the commitments along with them. With the exception of a few exempted classes, this was forbidden by the Code of Hammurabi.

China


Universal conscription in China dates back to the State of Qin, which eventually became the Qin Empire of 221BC. Following unification, historical records show that a total of 300,000 conscript soldiers and 500,000 conscript labourers constructed the Great Wall of China

In the following dynasties, universal conscription was abolished and reintroduced on numerous occasions.

, universal military conscription is theoretically mandatory in the People's Republic of China, and reinforced by law. However, due to the large population of China and large available candidates for the recruitment, the People's Liberation Army has always had sufficient volunteers, so conscription has not been required in practice at all.

Medieval levies


Under the feudal
Feudalism
Feudalism was a set of legal and military customs in medieval Europe that flourished between the 9th and 15th centuries, which, broadly defined, was a system for ordering society around relationships derived from the holding of land in exchange for service or labour.Although derived from the...

 conditions for holding land in the medieval period, most peasants and freemen were liable to provide one man of suitable age per family for military duty when required by either the king or the local lord. The levies raised in this way fought as infantry under local superiors. Although the exact laws varied greatly depending on the country and the period, generally these levies were only obliged to fight for one to three months. Most were subsistence farmers, and it was in everyone's interest to send the men home for harvest-time.

In medieval Scandinavia
Scandinavia
Scandinavia is a cultural, historical and ethno-linguistic region in northern Europe that includes the three kingdoms of Denmark, Norway and Sweden, characterized by their common ethno-cultural heritage and language. Modern Norway and Sweden proper are situated on the Scandinavian Peninsula,...

 the 'leiðangr' (Old Norse), 'leidang' (Norwegian
Norwegian language
Norwegian is a North Germanic language spoken primarily in Norway, where it is the official language. Together with Swedish and Danish, Norwegian forms a continuum of more or less mutually intelligible local and regional variants .These Scandinavian languages together with the Faroese language...

), 'leding', (Danish
Danish language
Danish is a North Germanic language spoken by around six million people, principally in the country of Denmark. It is also spoken by 50,000 Germans of Danish ethnicity in the northern parts of Schleswig-Holstein, Germany, where it holds the status of minority language...

), 'ledung' (Swedish
Swedish language
Swedish is a North Germanic language, spoken by approximately 10 million people, predominantly in Sweden and parts of Finland, especially along its coast and on the Åland islands. It is largely mutually intelligible with Norwegian and Danish...

), 'lichting' (Dutch
Dutch language
Dutch is a West Germanic language and the native language of the majority of the population of the Netherlands, Belgium, and Suriname, the three member states of the Dutch Language Union. Most speakers live in the European Union, where it is a first language for about 23 million and a second...

), 'expeditio' (Latin
Latin
Latin is an Italic language originally spoken in Latium and Ancient Rome. It, along with most European languages, is a descendant of the ancient Proto-Indo-European language. Although it is considered a dead language, a number of scholars and members of the Christian clergy speak it fluently, and...

) or sometimes 'leþing' (Old English
English language
English is a West Germanic language that arose in the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of England and spread into what was to become south-east Scotland under the influence of the Anglian medieval kingdom of Northumbria...

), was a levy of free farmers conscripted into coastal fleets for seasonal excursions and in defence of the realm.

The bulk of the Anglo-Saxon English
History of Anglo-Saxon England
Anglo-Saxon England refers to the period of the history of that part of Britain, that became known as England, lasting from the end of Roman occupation and establishment of Anglo-Saxon kingdoms in the 5th century until the Norman conquest of England in 1066 by William the Conqueror...

 army, called the fyrd, was composed of part-time English soldiers drawn from the landowning minor nobility. These thegn
Thegn
The term thegn , from OE þegn, ðegn "servant, attendant, retainer", is commonly used to describe either an aristocratic retainer of a king or nobleman in Anglo-Saxon England, or as a class term, the majority of the aristocracy below the ranks of ealdormen and high-reeves...

s were the land-holding aristocracy of the time and were required to serve with their own armour and weapons for a certain number of days each year. The historian David Sturdy has cautioned about regarding the fyrd as a precursor to a modern national army composed of all ranks of society, describing it as a "ridiculous fantasy":
The persistent old belief that peasants and small farmers gathered to form a national army or fyrd is a strange delusion dreamt up by antiquarians in the late eighteenth or early nineteenth centuries to justify universal military conscription.

Military slavery


The system of military slaves was widely used in the Middle East, beginning with the Egyptians training Mamluk
Mamluk
A Mamluk was a soldier of slave origin, who were predominantly Cumans/Kipchaks The "mamluk phenomenon", as David Ayalon dubbed the creation of the specific warrior...

s from the 9th century, to the Turks and Ottoman Empire
Ottoman Empire
The Ottoman EmpireIt was usually referred to as the "Ottoman Empire", the "Turkish Empire", the "Ottoman Caliphate" or more commonly "Turkey" by its contemporaries...

 through the 19th century.

In the middle of the 14th century, Ottoman Sultan Murad I
Murad I
Murad I was the Sultan of the Ottoman Empire, from 1361 to 1389...

 developed personal troops to be loyal to him, with a slave army called the Kapıkulu. The new force was built by taking Christian children from newly conquered lands, especially from the far areas of his empire, in a system known as the devşirme (translated "gathering" or "converting"). The captive children were persuaded to convert to Islam
Islam
Islam . The most common are and .   : Arabic pronunciation varies regionally. The first vowel ranges from ~~. The second vowel ranges from ~~~...

. The Sultans had the young boys trained over several years. Those who showed special promise in fighting skills were trained in advanced warrior skills, put into the sultan's personal service, and turned into the Janissaries
Janissary
The Janissaries were infantry units that formed the Ottoman sultan's household troops and bodyguards...

, the elite branch of the Kapıkulu. A number of distinguished military commanders of the Ottomans, and most of the imperial administrators and upper-level officials of the Empire, such as Pargalı İbrahim Pasha
Pargali Ibrahim Pasha
Pargali Ibrahim Pasha , also known as Frenk Ibrahim Pasha , Makbul Ibrahim Pasha , and referred to him as Maktul Ibrahim Pasha after his murder in the Topkapı Palace, was the first Grand Vizier in the Ottoman Empire appointed by Suleiman the Magnificent...

 and Sokollu Mehmet Paşa, were recruited in this way. By 1609 the Sultan's Kapıkulu forces increased to about 100,000.

In later years, Sultans turned to the Barbary Pirates to supply their Jannissaries corps. Their attacks on ships off the coast of Africa or in the Mediterranean, and subsequent capture of able bodied men for ransom or sale provided some captives for the Sultan's system. Starting in the 17th century, Christian families living under the Ottoman rule began to submit their sons into the Kapikulu system willingly, as they saw this as a potentially invaluable career opportunity for their children. Eventually the Sultan turned to foreign volunteers from the warrior clans of Circassians in southern Russia to fill his Janissary armies. As a whole the system began to break down, the loyalty of the Jannissaries became increasingly suspect. Mahmud II
Mahmud II
Mahmud II was the 30th Sultan of the Ottoman Empire from 1808 until his death in 1839. He was born in the Topkapi Palace, Istanbul, the son of Sultan Abdulhamid I...

 forcibly disbanded the Janissary corps in 1826.

Similar to the Janissaries in origin and means of development were the Mamluks of Egypt in the Middle Ages
Middle Ages
The Middle Ages is a periodization of European history from the 5th century to the 15th century. The Middle Ages follows the fall of the Western Roman Empire in 476 and precedes the Early Modern Era. It is the middle period of a three-period division of Western history: Classic, Medieval and Modern...

. The Mamluks were usually captive non-Muslim Iranian and Turkish children who had been kidnapped or bought as slaves from the Barbary coasts. The Egyptians assimilated and trained the boys and young men to become Islamic soldiers who served the Muslim caliph
Caliph
The Caliph is the head of state in a Caliphate, and the title for the ruler of the Islamic Ummah, an Islamic community ruled by the Shari'ah. It is a transcribed version of the Arabic word   which means "successor" or "representative"...

s and the Ayyubid sultans during the Middle Ages
Middle Ages
The Middle Ages is a periodization of European history from the 5th century to the 15th century. The Middle Ages follows the fall of the Western Roman Empire in 476 and precedes the Early Modern Era. It is the middle period of a three-period division of Western history: Classic, Medieval and Modern...

. The first mamluks served the Abbasid
Abbasid
The Abbasid Caliphate or, more simply, the Abbasids , was the third of the Islamic caliphates. It was ruled by the Abbasid dynasty of caliphs, who built their capital in Baghdad after overthrowing the Umayyad caliphate from all but the al-Andalus region....

 caliphs in 9th century Baghdad
Baghdad
Baghdad is the capital of Iraq, as well as the coterminous Baghdad Governorate. The population of Baghdad in 2011 is approximately 7,216,040...

. Over time they became a powerful military caste
Caste
Caste is an elaborate and complex social system that combines elements of endogamy, occupation, culture, social class, tribal affiliation and political power. It should not be confused with race or social class, e.g. members of different castes in one society may belong to the same race, as in India...

. On more than one occasion, they seized power, for example, ruling Egypt
Egypt
Egypt , officially the Arab Republic of Egypt, Arabic: , is a country mainly in North Africa, with the Sinai Peninsula forming a land bridge in Southwest Asia. Egypt is thus a transcontinental country, and a major power in Africa, the Mediterranean Basin, the Middle East and the Muslim world...

 from 1250–1517.

From 1250 Egypt
Egypt
Egypt , officially the Arab Republic of Egypt, Arabic: , is a country mainly in North Africa, with the Sinai Peninsula forming a land bridge in Southwest Asia. Egypt is thus a transcontinental country, and a major power in Africa, the Mediterranean Basin, the Middle East and the Muslim world...

 had been ruled by the Bahri dynasty
Bahri dynasty
The Bahri dynasty or Bahriyya Mamluks was a Mamluk dynasty of mostly Kipchak Turkic origin that ruled Egypt from 1250 to 1382 when they were succeeded by the Burji dynasty, another group of Mamluks...

 of Kipchak origin. Slaves from the Caucasus served in the army and formed an elite corp of troops. They eventually revolted in Egypt to form the Burgi dynasty. The Mamluks' excellent fighting abilities, massed Islamic armies, and overwhelming numbers succeeded in overcoming the Christian Crusader
Crusades
The Crusades were a series of religious wars, blessed by the Pope and the Catholic Church with the main goal of restoring Christian access to the holy places in and near Jerusalem...

 fortresses in the Holy Land. The Mamluks were the most successful defense against the Mongol Ilkhanate
Ilkhanate
The Ilkhanate, also spelled Il-khanate , was a Mongol khanate established in Azerbaijan and Persia in the 13th century, considered a part of the Mongol Empire...

 of Persia and Iraq from entering Egypt.

On the western coast of Africa, Berber Muslims captured non-Muslims to put to work as laborers. They generally converted the younger people to Islam and many became quite assimilated. In Morocco, the Berber looked south rather than north. The Moroccan Sultan Moulay Ismail, called "the Bloodthirsty" (1672–1727), employed a corps of 150,000 black slaves, called his Black Guard
Black Guard
The Black Guard , also known as "Masters of the Blackness," were the corps of black-African slave-soldiers assembled by the Alaouite sultan of Morocco, Moulay Ismail...

. He used them to coerce the country into submission.

Invention of modern conscription


Modern conscription, the massed military enlistment of national citizens, was devised during the French Revolution
French Revolution
The French Revolution , sometimes distinguished as the 'Great French Revolution' , was a period of radical social and political upheaval in France and Europe. The absolute monarchy that had ruled France for centuries collapsed in three years...

, to enable the Republic to defend itself from the attacks of European monarchies. Deputy Jean-Baptiste Jourdan
Jean-Baptiste Jourdan
Jean-Baptiste Jourdan, 1st Comte Jourdan , enlisted as a private in the French royal army and rose to command armies during the French Revolutionary Wars. Emperor Napoleon I of France named him a Marshal of France in 1804 and he also fought in the Napoleonic Wars. After 1815, he became reconciled...

 gave its name to the 5 September 1798 Act, whose first article stated: "Any Frenchman is a soldier and owes himself to the defense of the nation
Patriotism
Patriotism is a devotion to one's country, excluding differences caused by the dependencies of the term's meaning upon context, geography and philosophy...

." It enabled the creation of the Grande Armée, what Napoleon Bonaparte
Napoleon I of France
Napoleon Bonaparte was a French military and political leader during the latter stages of the French Revolution.As Napoleon I, he was Emperor of the French from 1804 to 1815...

 called "the nation in arms," which overwhelmed European professional armies that often numbered only into the low tens of thousands. More than 2.6 million men were inducted into the French military in this way between the years 1800 and 1813.

The defeat of the Prussian Army
Prussian Army
The Royal Prussian Army was the army of the Kingdom of Prussia. It was vital to the development of Brandenburg-Prussia as a European power.The Prussian Army had its roots in the meager mercenary forces of Brandenburg during the Thirty Years' War...

 in particular shocked the Prussian establishment, which had believed it was invincible after the victories of Frederick the Great. The Prussians were used to relying on superior organization and tactical factors such as order of battle to focus superior troops against inferior ones. Given approximately equivalent forces, as was generally the case with professional armies, these factors showed considerable importance. However, they became considerably less important when the Prussian armies faced forces that outnumbered their own in some cases by more than ten to one. Scharnhorst
Gerhard von Scharnhorst
Gerhard Johann David Waitz von Scharnhorst was a general in Prussian service, Chief of the Prussian General Staff, noted for both his writings, his reforms of the Prussian army, and his leadership during the Napoleonic Wars....

 advocated adopting the levée en masse
Levée en masse
Levée en masse is a French term for mass conscription during the French Revolutionary Wars, particularly for the one from 16 August 1793.- Terminology :...

, the military conscription used by France. The Krümpersystem was the beginning of short-term compulsory service in Prussia, as opposed to the long-term conscription previously used.

In the Russian Empire
Russian Empire
The Russian Empire was a state that existed from 1721 until the Russian Revolution of 1917. It was the successor to the Tsardom of Russia and the predecessor of the Soviet Union...

, the military service time "owed" by serfs was 25 years at the beginning of the 19th century. In 1834 it was decreased to 20 years. The recruits were to be not younger than 17 and not older than 35. In 1874 Russia introduced universal conscription in the modern pattern, an innovation only made possible by the abolition of serfdom in 1861. New military law decreed that all male Russian subjects, when they reached the age of 20, were eligible to serve in the military for six years.

World Wars


The range of eligible ages for conscripting was expanded to meet national demand during the World Wars.
In the United States, the Selective Service System
Selective Service System
The Selective Service System is a means by which the United States government maintains information on those potentially subject to military conscription. Most male U.S. citizens and male immigrant non-citizens between the ages of 18 and 25 are required by law to have registered within 30 days of...

 drafted men for World War I initially in an age range from 21 to 30 but expanded its eligibility in 1918 to an age range of 18 to 45. In the case of a widespread mobilization
Mobilization
Mobilization is the act of assembling and making both troops and supplies ready for war. The word mobilization was first used, in a military context, in order to describe the preparation of the Prussian army during the 1850s and 1860s. Mobilization theories and techniques have continuously changed...

 of forces where service includes homefront defense, ages of conscripts may range much higher, with the oldest conscripts serving in roles requiring lesser mobility. Expanded-age conscription was common during the Second World War: in Britain, it was commonly known as "call-up" and extended to age 51. Nazi Germany
Nazi Germany
Nazi Germany , also known as the Third Reich , but officially called German Reich from 1933 to 1943 and Greater German Reich from 26 June 1943 onward, is the name commonly used to refer to the state of Germany from 1933 to 1945, when it was a totalitarian dictatorship ruled by...

 termed it Volkssturm
Volkssturm
The Volkssturm was a German national militia of the last months of World War II. It was founded on Adolf Hitler's orders on October 18, 1944 and conscripted males between the ages of 16 to 60 years who were not already serving in some military unit as part of a German Home Guard.-Origins and...

 ("People's Storm") and included men as young as 16 and as old as 60. During the Second World War, both Britain and the former Soviet Union conscripted women. The United States was on the verge of drafting women into the Nurse Corps because it anticipated it would need the extra personnel for its planned invasion of Japan. However the Japanese surrendered and the idea was abandoned.

Britain



Britain introduced conscription for the first time in 1916 (halfway through World War I
World War I
World War I , which was predominantly called the World War or the Great War from its occurrence until 1939, and the First World War or World War I thereafter, was a major war centred in Europe that began on 28 July 1914 and lasted until 11 November 1918...

) and abolished it in 1920, and reintroduced it again in 1939 on the outbreak of World War II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

. It remained in force until 1960.

In all, 8,000,000 men were drafted, as well as several hundred thousand women. The introduction of conscription in May 1939, before the war began, was largely due to pressure from the French, who emphasized the need for a large British army to oppose the Germans. Starting in early 1942 unmarried women age 19-30 were conscripted. Most were sent to the factories, but they could volunteer for the Auxiliary Territorial Service
Auxiliary Territorial Service
The Auxiliary Territorial Service was the women's branch of the British Army during the Second World War...

 (ATS) and other women's services. None were assigned to combat roles unless they volunteered. By 1943 women were liable to some form of directed labour up to age 51. During the Second World War, 1.4 million British men volunteered for service and 3.2 million were conscripted. Volunteers comprised 20% of the Army, 40% of the Royal Navy, and 50% of the Royal Air Force.

The abolition of conscription in Britain was announced on 4 April 1957 by recently elected prime minister Harold Macmillan
Harold Macmillan
Maurice Harold Macmillan, 1st Earl of Stockton, OM, PC was Conservative Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 10 January 1957 to 18 October 1963....

, with the last conscripts being recruited three years later.

Colonial and Early National


In America before 1862, combat duty was always voluntary, but white men aged 18 to 45 were usually required to join local militia units. Colonial militia laws—and after 1776 those of the states—required able-bodied white men to enroll in the militia and to undergo a minimum of military training, all without pay. Colonial Pennsylvania (controlled by Quakers) did not have such laws. Members of pacifist religious denominations were exempt. When combat troops were needed some of the militiamen volunteered for short terms of service, for which they were paid. Following this system in its essentials, the Continental Congress in 1778 recommended that the states draft men from their militias for one year's service in the Continental army; this first national conscription was irregularly applied and failed to fill the Continental ranks.

In 1814, President James Madison proposed conscription of 40,000 men for the army, but the War of 1812 ended before Congress took any action.
An 1840 proposal for a standing army of 200,000 men included conscription never passed and military service was voluntary before 1862.

Civil War


Although both North and South resorted to conscription during the Civil War
American Civil War
The American Civil War was a civil war fought in the United States of America. In response to the election of Abraham Lincoln as President of the United States, 11 southern slave states declared their secession from the United States and formed the Confederate States of America ; the other 25...

, in neither nation did the system work effectively. The Confederate congress on April 16, 1862, passed an act requiring military service for three years from all males aged eighteen to thirty-five not legally exempt, and it later extended the obligation. The U.S. Congress followed on July 17, 1862, with an act authorizing a militia draft within a state when it could not meet its quota with volunteers. This state-administered system failed in practice and on March 3, 1863, Congress passed the first genuine national conscription law, setting up under the Union army an elaborate machinery for enrolling and drafting men between twenty and forty-five years of age.

Quotas were assigned in each state, the deficiencies in volunteers to be met by conscription. But men drafted could provide substitutes or, until mid-1864, avoid service by paying commutation money. Many eligibles pooled their money to cover the cost of anyone drafted. Families used the substitute provision to select which man should go into the army and which should stay home. There was much evasion and overt resistance to the draft, especially in Catholic areas. The great draft riot in New York City in July 1863
New York Draft Riots
The New York City draft riots were violent disturbances in New York City that were the culmination of discontent with new laws passed by Congress to draft men to fight in the ongoing American Civil War. The riots were the largest civil insurrection in American history apart from the Civil War itself...

 involved Irish immigrants who had been signed up as citizens to swell the machine vote, not realizing it made them liable for the draft. Of the 168,649 men procured for the Union through the draft, 117,986 were substitutes, leaving only 50,663 who had their personal services conscripted.

The problem of Confederate desertion was aggravated by the inequitable inclinations of conscription officers and local judges. The three conscription acts of the Confederacy exempted certain categories, most notably the planter class, and enrolling officers and local judges often practiced favoritism, sometimes accepting bribes. Attempts to effectively deal with the issue were frustrated by conflict between state and local governments on the one hand and the national government of the Confederacy.

World War I


In 1917 the administration of Woodrow Wilson
Woodrow Wilson
Thomas Woodrow Wilson was the 28th President of the United States, from 1913 to 1921. A leader of the Progressive Movement, he served as President of Princeton University from 1902 to 1910, and then as the Governor of New Jersey from 1911 to 1913...

 decided to rely primarily on conscription, rather than voluntary enlistment, to raise military manpower for World War I. The Selective Service Act of 1917
Selective Service Act of 1917
The Selective Service Act or Selective Draft Act was passed by the Congress of the United States on May 18, 1917. It was envisioned in December 1916 and brought to President Woodrow Wilson's attention shortly after the break in relations with Germany in February 1917...

 was carefully drawn to remedy the defects in the Civil War system and—by allowing exemptions for dependency, essential occupations, and religious scruples—to place each man in his proper niche in a national war effort. The act established a "liability for military service of all male citizens"; authorized a selective draft of all those between twenty-one and thirty-one years of age (later from eighteen to forty-five); and prohibited all forms of bounties, substitutions, or purchase of exemptions. Administration was entrusted to local boards composed of leading civilians in each community. These boards issued draft calls in order of numbers drawn in a national lottery and determined exemptions. In 1917 and 1918 some 24 million men were registered and nearly 3 million inducted into the military services, with little of the resistance that characterized the Civil War.

World War II


In 1940 Congress passed the first peace-time draft
Conscription in the United States
Conscription in the United States has been employed several times, usually during war but also during the nominal peace of the Cold War...

 legislation, which was led by Grenville Clark
Grenville Clark
Grenville Clark was the writer of the book World Peace Through World Law...

. It was renewed (by one vote) in summer 1941. It involved questions as to who should control the draft, the size of the army, and the need for deferments. The system worked through local draft boards comprising community leaders who were given quotas and then decided how to fill them. There was very little draft resistance.

The nation went from a surplus manpower pool with high unemployment and relief in 1940 to a severe manpower shortage by 1943. Industry realized that the Army urgently desired production of essential war materials and foodstuffs more than soldiers. (Large numbers of soldiers were not used until the invasion of Europe in summer 1944.) In 1940-43 the Army often transferred soldiers to civilian status in the Enlisted Reserve Corps in order to increase production. Those transferred would return to work in essential industry, although they could be called back to active duty if the Army needed them. Others were discharged if their civilian work was deemed absolutely essential. There were instances of mass releases of men to increase production in various industries. Blacks and Asians were drafted under the same terms as whites. There was talk of a draft of women nurses in 1945, but nothing came of it.

One contentious issue involved the drafting of fathers, which was avoided as much as possible. The drafting of 18-year olds was desired by the military but vetoed by public opinion. Farmers demanded and were generally given occupational deferments (many volunteered anyway, and those who stayed at home were not eligible for postwar veteran's benefits).

Later in the war, in light of the tremendous amount of manpower that would be necessary for the invasion of France, many earlier deferment categories became draft eligible.

Drafting of women


, countries that were drafting women into military service included
Benin
Benin
Benin , officially the Republic of Benin, is a country in West Africa. It borders Togo to the west, Nigeria to the east and Burkina Faso and Niger to the north. Its small southern coastline on the Bight of Benin is where a majority of the population is located...

,
Chad
Chad
Chad , officially known as the Republic of Chad, is a landlocked country in Central Africa. It is bordered by Libya to the north, Sudan to the east, the Central African Republic to the south, Cameroon and Nigeria to the southwest, and Niger to the west...


China
China
Chinese civilization may refer to:* China for more general discussion of the country.* Chinese culture* Greater China, the transnational community of ethnic Chinese.* History of China* Sinosphere, the area historically affected by Chinese culture...

,
Cuba
Cuba
The Republic of Cuba is an island nation in the Caribbean. The nation of Cuba consists of the main island of Cuba, the Isla de la Juventud, and several archipelagos. Havana is the largest city in Cuba and the country's capital. Santiago de Cuba is the second largest city...

,
Eritrea
Eritrea
Eritrea , officially the State of Eritrea, is a country in the Horn of Africa. Eritrea derives it's name from the Greek word Erethria, meaning 'red land'. The capital is Asmara. It is bordered by Sudan in the west, Ethiopia in the south, and Djibouti in the southeast...

,
Israel
Israel
The State of Israel is a parliamentary republic located in the Middle East, along the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea...

,
Libya
Libya
Libya is an African country in the Maghreb region of North Africa bordered by the Mediterranean Sea to the north, Egypt to the east, Sudan to the southeast, Chad and Niger to the south, and Algeria and Tunisia to the west....

,
Malaysia,
North Korea
North Korea
The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea , , is a country in East Asia, occupying the northern half of the Korean Peninsula. Its capital and largest city is Pyongyang. The Korean Demilitarized Zone serves as the buffer zone between North Korea and South Korea...

,
Peru
Peru
Peru , officially the Republic of Peru , is a country in western South America. It is bordered on the north by Ecuador and Colombia, on the east by Brazil, on the southeast by Bolivia, on the south by Chile, and on the west by the Pacific Ocean....

,
Taiwan
Taiwan
Taiwan , also known, especially in the past, as Formosa , is the largest island of the same-named island group of East Asia in the western Pacific Ocean and located off the southeastern coast of mainland China. The island forms over 99% of the current territory of the Republic of China following...

,
and Tunisia
Tunisia
Tunisia , officially the Tunisian RepublicThe long name of Tunisia in other languages used in the country is: , is the northernmost country in Africa. It is a Maghreb country and is bordered by Algeria to the west, Libya to the southeast, and the Mediterranean Sea to the north and east. Its area...

.
In the United Kingdom during World War II, beginning in 1941, women were brought into the scope of conscription but, as all women with dependent children were exempt and many women were informally left in occupations such as nursing or teaching, the number conscripted was relatively few.

In 2002, Sweden considered female conscription on the grounds that excluding them goes against the ideology of equality.

In the USSR, there was no systematic conscription of women for the armed forces, but the severe disruption of normal life and the high proportion of civilians affected by World War II after the German invasion attracted many volunteers for what was termed "The Great Patriotic War". Medical doctors of both sexes could and would be conscripted (as officers). Also, the free Soviet university education system required Department of Chemistry students of both sexes to complete an ROTC course in NBC defense, and such female reservist officers could be conscripted in times of war. The United States came close to drafting women into the Nurse Corps
Nurse Corps
Most professional militaries employ specialised military nurses. They are often organised as a distinct nursing corps.-Well-known nursing corps:* U.S...

 in preparation for a planned invasion of Japan
Operation Downfall
Operation Downfall was the Allied plan for the invasion of Japan near the end of World War II. The operation was cancelled when Japan surrendered after the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and the Soviet Union's declaration of war against Japan. The operation had two parts: Operation...

.

In 1981 in the United States, several men filed lawsuit in the case Rostker v. Goldberg
Rostker v. Goldberg
Rostker v. Goldberg, 453 U.S. 57 , was a decision of the United States Supreme Court holding that the practice of requiring only men to register for the draft was constitutional....

, alleging that the Selective Service Act of 1948
Selective Service Act of 1948
The Selective Service Act of 1948, also known as the Elston Act, , was a major revision of the Articles of War of the United States and established the current implementation of the Selective Service System...

 violates the Due Process Clause of the Fifth Amendment
Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution
The Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution, which is part of the Bill of Rights, protects against abuse of government authority in a legal procedure. Its guarantees stem from English common law which traces back to the Magna Carta in 1215...

 by only requiring that men register with the Selective Service System
Selective Service System
The Selective Service System is a means by which the United States government maintains information on those potentially subject to military conscription. Most male U.S. citizens and male immigrant non-citizens between the ages of 18 and 25 are required by law to have registered within 30 days of...

 (SSS). The Supreme Court
Supreme Court of the United States
The Supreme Court of the United States is the highest court in the United States. It has ultimate appellate jurisdiction over all state and federal courts, and original jurisdiction over a small range of cases...

 eventually upheld the Act, stating that "the argument for registering women was based on considerations of equity, but Congress was entitled, in the exercise of its constitutional powers, to focus on the question of military need, rather than 'equity.'"

On October 1, 1999 in the Taiwan Area, the Judicial Yuan
Judicial Yuan
The Judicial Yuan is one of five branches of the government of the Republic of China in Taiwan and serves as the highest judicial organ in Republic of China. Its Justices of the Constitutional Court , with 15 members, is charged with interpreting the Constitution...

 of the Republic of China in its Interpretation 490 considered that the physical differences between males and females and the derived role differentiation in their respective social functions and lives would not make drafting males only violating the Constitution of the Republic of China
Constitution of the Republic of China
The Constitution of the Republic of China is the fundamental law of the Republic of China . Drafted by the Kuomintang as part of its third stage of national development , it established a centralized Republic with five branches of government...

. Though women are conscripted in Taiwan, transsexual persons are exempt.

Traditionally conscription has been limited to the male population. Women and handicapped
Handicapped
Handicapped or handicap may refer to:*Handicapping, various methods of leveling a sport or game**Golf handicap, a sport-specific handicapping method**Go handicaps**Handicaps in shogi**Asian handicap, bookmakers technique to level odds...

 males have been exempted from conscription. Many societies have traditionally considered military service as a test of manhood and a rite of passage
Rite of passage
A rite of passage is a ritual event that marks a person's progress from one status to another. It is a universal phenomenon which can show anthropologists what social hierarchies, values and beliefs are important in specific cultures....

 from boyhood into manhood.

Conscientious objection



A conscientious objector
Conscientious objector
A conscientious objector is an "individual who has claimed the right to refuse to perform military service" on the grounds of freedom of thought, conscience, and/or religion....

 is an individual whose personal beliefs are incompatible with military service
Armed forces
The armed forces of a country are its government-sponsored defense, fighting forces, and organizations. They exist to further the foreign and domestic policies of their governing body, and to defend that body and the nation it represents from external aggressors. In some countries paramilitary...

, or, more often, with any role in the armed forces. In some countries, conscientious objectors have special legal status, which augments their conscription duties. For example, Sweden used to allow conscientious objectors to choose a service in the "weapons-free" branch, such as an airport fireman, nurse or telecommunications technician.

Most refuse such service, as they feel that such roles are a part of the military complex. The reasons for refusing to serve are varied. Some conscientious objectors are so for religious reasons — notably, the members of the historic peace churches
Peace churches
Peace churches are Christian churches, groups or communities advocating Christian pacifism. The term historic peace churches refers specifically only to three church groups among pacifist churches: Church of the Brethren, Mennonites including the Amish, and Religious Society of Friends and has...

, pacifist
Pacifism
Pacifism is the opposition to war and violence. The term "pacifism" was coined by the French peace campaignerÉmile Arnaud and adopted by other peace activists at the tenth Universal Peace Congress inGlasgow in 1901.- Definition :...

 by doctrine; Jehovah's Witnesses
Jehovah's Witnesses
Jehovah's Witnesses is a millenarian restorationist Christian denomination with nontrinitarian beliefs distinct from mainstream Christianity. The religion reports worldwide membership of over 7 million adherents involved in evangelism, convention attendance of over 12 million, and annual...

, while not strictly pacifists, refuse to participate in the armed forces on the ground that they believe Christians should be neutral in worldly conflicts.

Evading the draft


The New York Draft Riots
New York Draft Riots
The New York City draft riots were violent disturbances in New York City that were the culmination of discontent with new laws passed by Congress to draft men to fight in the ongoing American Civil War. The riots were the largest civil insurrection in American history apart from the Civil War itself...

 (July 11 to July 16, 1863; known at the time as Draft Week), were violent disturbances in New York City that were the culmination of discontent with new laws passed by Congress
United States Congress
The United States Congress is the bicameral legislature of the federal government of the United States, consisting of the Senate and the House of Representatives. The Congress meets in the United States Capitol in Washington, D.C....

 to draft men to fight in the ongoing American Civil War
American Civil War
The American Civil War was a civil war fought in the United States of America. In response to the election of Abraham Lincoln as President of the United States, 11 southern slave states declared their secession from the United States and formed the Confederate States of America ; the other 25...

. The Central Asian Revolt started in the summer of 1916, when the Russian Empire
Russian Empire
The Russian Empire was a state that existed from 1721 until the Russian Revolution of 1917. It was the successor to the Tsardom of Russia and the predecessor of the Soviet Union...

 government ended its exemption of Muslims from military service. The conscription also became unpopular in Grand Duchy of Finland
Grand Duchy of Finland
The Grand Duchy of Finland was the predecessor state of modern Finland. It existed 1809–1917 as part of the Russian Empire and was ruled by the Russian czar as Grand Prince.- History :...

 during the reign of Nicholas II and was suspended; instead Finland paid a levy tax, "military millions" as compensation for abolition of conscription.

In the USA and some other countries, the Vietnam War
Vietnam War
The Vietnam War was a Cold War-era military conflict that occurred in Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia from 1 November 1955 to the fall of Saigon on 30 April 1975. This war followed the First Indochina War and was fought between North Vietnam, supported by its communist allies, and the government of...

 saw new levels of opposition to conscription and the Selective Service System
Selective Service System
The Selective Service System is a means by which the United States government maintains information on those potentially subject to military conscription. Most male U.S. citizens and male immigrant non-citizens between the ages of 18 and 25 are required by law to have registered within 30 days of...

. Many people opposed to and facing conscription chose to either apply for classification and assignment to civilian alternative service or noncombatant service within the military as conscientious objectors, or to evade the draft by fleeing to a neutral country. A small proportion, like Muhammad Ali
Muhammad Ali
Muhammad Ali is an American former professional boxer, philanthropist and social activist...

, chose to resist the draft by publicly and politically fighting conscription. Some people resist at the point of registration for the draft. In the USA around 1970, for example, the draft resistance movement has focused on mandatory draft registration. Others resist at the point of induction, when they are ordered to put on a uniform, when they are ordered to carry or use a weapon, or when they are ordered into combat.

In the United States, especially during the Vietnam Era, some used political connections to ensure that they were placed well away from any potential harm, serving in what was termed a Champagne unit
Champagne unit
Champagne unit is a pejorative term used to describe US military units that had been staffed by celebrities or people from wealthy or politically powerful families. Such units were often part of the National Guard, and assigned to lower-risk duty inside the United States...

. Many would avoid military service altogether through college deferments, by becoming fathers, or serving in various exempt jobs (teaching was one possibility). Others used educational exemptions, became conscientious objectors or pretended to be conscientious objectors, although they might then be drafted for non-combat work, such as serving as a combat medic
Combat medic
Combat medics are trained military personnel who are responsible for providing first aid and frontline trauma care on the battlefield. They are also responsible for providing continuing medical care in the absence of a readily available physician, including care for disease and battle injury...

. It was also possible they could be asked to do similar civilian work, such as being a hospital orderly.

It was, in fact, quite easy for those with some knowledge of the system to avoid being drafted. A simple route, widely publicized, was to get a medical rejection. While a person could claim to have symptoms (or feign homosexuality
Homosexuality
Homosexuality is romantic or sexual attraction or behavior between members of the same sex or gender. As a sexual orientation, homosexuality refers to "an enduring pattern of or disposition to experience sexual, affectional, or romantic attractions" primarily or exclusively to people of the same...

) if enough physicians sent letters that a person had a problem, he might well be rejected. It often wasn't worth the Army's time to dispute this claim. Such an approach worked best in a larger city where there was no stigma to not serving, and the potential draftee was not known to those reviewing him.

For others, the most common method of avoiding the draft was to cross the border into another country. People who have been "called up" for military service and who attempted to avoid it in some way were known as "draft-dodgers". Particularly during the Vietnam War, US draft-dodgers usually made their way to Canada, Mexico or Sweden.

Many people looked upon draft-dodgers with scorn as being "cowards", but some supported them in their efforts. In the late years of the Vietnam War
Vietnam War
The Vietnam War was a Cold War-era military conflict that occurred in Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia from 1 November 1955 to the fall of Saigon on 30 April 1975. This war followed the First Indochina War and was fought between North Vietnam, supported by its communist allies, and the government of...

, objections against it and support for draft-dodgers was much more outspoken, because of the casualties suffered by American troops, and the actual cause and purpose of the war being heavily questioned.

Toward the end of the US draft, an attempt was made to make the system somewhat fairer by turning it into a lottery, with each of the year's calendar dates randomly assigned a number. Men born on lower numbered dates were called up for review. For the reasons given above, this did not make the system any fairer, and the entire system ended in 1973. By 1975, the draft was no longer mandatory. Today, American men aged 18-25 are encouraged to sign up for the Government, there has not been a call-up since the Vietnam Era.

In Israel, the Muslim and Christian Arab minority are exempt from mandatory service, as are permanent residents such as the Druze
Druze
The Druze are an esoteric, monotheistic religious community, found primarily in Syria, Lebanon, Israel, and Jordan, which emerged during the 11th century from Ismailism. The Druze have an eclectic set of beliefs that incorporate several elements from Abrahamic religions, Gnosticism, Neoplatonism...

 of the Golan Heights. Male Ultra-Orthodox Jews may apply for a deferment of draft to study in Yeshiva
Yeshiva
Yeshiva is a Jewish educational institution that focuses on the study of traditional religious texts, primarily the Talmud and Torah study. Study is usually done through daily shiurim and in study pairs called chavrutas...

, and the deferment tends to become an exemption, while female religious Jews can be exempted after presenting "religious declaration" to the IDF authorities, and some (primarily National Religious or Modern Orthodox) choose to volunteer for national service instead. Male Druze
Druze
The Druze are an esoteric, monotheistic religious community, found primarily in Syria, Lebanon, Israel, and Jordan, which emerged during the 11th century from Ismailism. The Druze have an eclectic set of beliefs that incorporate several elements from Abrahamic religions, Gnosticism, Neoplatonism...

 and Circassian Israeli citizens are liable, by agreement with their community leaders (Female Druze and Circassian are exempt from service). Members of the exempted groups can still volunteer, but very few do, except for the Bedouin where a relatively large number have tended to volunteer (usually for financial reasons).

Countries with and without mandatory military service


Conscription by country — Examples
Country Land area (km2) GDP nominal (US$M) Per capita
GDP (US$)
Population Government Conscription
Albania 27,398 $11,800 $2,949.57 2,994,667 Parliamentary Democracy No (abolished in 2010)
Algeria 2,381,740 $159,000 $3,948.01 34,994,937 Republic Yes
Angola 1,246,700 $85,810 $5,003.43 13,338,541 Republic; Multiparty Presidential Regime Yes
Argentina 2,736,690 $351,000 $8,662.99 41,769,726 Republic No. Voluntary; conscription may be ordered for specified reasons; per Public Law No.24.429 promulgated on 5 January 1995.
Australia 7,617,930 $1,220,000 $44,474.51 21,766,711 Federal Parliamentary Democracy No (abolished by parliament in 1972)
Austria 82,444 $366,300 $45,598.77 8,217,280 Federal Republic Yes (Alternative service
Alternative service
Alternative service is a form of national service performed in lieu of conscription for various reasons, such as conscientious objection, inadequate health, or political reasons. See "labour battalion" for examples of the latter case...

 available)
Bahamas 10,070 $7,538 $21,547.17 313,312 Constitutional Monarchy with a parliamentary system of government No
Bangladesh 133,910 $100,100 $481.36 158,570,535 Parliamentary Democracy No
Belgium 30,278 $461,300 $43,648.01 10,431,477 Federal Parliamentary Democracy under Constitutional Monarchy Conscription was abolished as of 1 January 1994 under the so-called Delacroix Bill of 6 July 1993)
Suspended (conscription suspended as of 1 January 1994)
Belize 22,806 $1,431 $4,327.67 321,115 Parliamentary Democracy No. Military service is voluntary.
Bhutan 47,000 $1,397 $561.89 708,427 Constitutional Monarchy No
Bolivia 1,084,390 $19,180 $1,446.41 10,118,683 Republic Yes (when annual number of volunteers falls short of goal)
Bosnia and Herzegovina 51,197 $16,320 $3,246.78 4,622,163 Emerging Federal Democratic Republic No (Abolished on January 1, 2006.)
Brazil 8,456,510 $2,024,000 $6,915.40 203,429,773 Federal Republic Yes
Bulgaria 110,550 $44,840 $5,409.09 7,093,635 Parliamentary Democracy No (abolished by law on January 1, 2008)
Burma 657,740 $35,650 $285.60 53,999,804 Military Junta
Chile 748,800 $199,200 $10,058.50 16,888,760 republic Yes
China, People's Republic of 9,326,410 $5,745,000 $2,459.43 1,336,718,015 Communist State
Croatia 56,414 $59,920 $11,430.32 4,483,804 presidential/parliamentary democracy No (abolished by law in 2008)
Cuba 110,860 $57,490 $4,000.34 11,087,330ã Communist state Yes
Cyprus 9,240 $22,750 $27,014.79 1,120,489 republic Yes (Alternative service
Alternative service
Alternative service is a form of national service performed in lieu of conscription for various reasons, such as conscientious objection, inadequate health, or political reasons. See "labour battalion" for examples of the latter case...

 available)
Denmark 42,394 $311,900 $57,039.71 5,529,888 constitutional monarchy Yes (Alternative service
Alternative service
Alternative service is a form of national service performed in lieu of conscription for various reasons, such as conscientious objection, inadequate health, or political reasons. See "labour battalion" for examples of the latter case...

 available)
Djibouti 22,980 $1,139 $1,694.29 757,074 republic No
Ecuador 276,840 $56,500 $3,211.76 15,007,343 republic Yes
Egypt 995,450 $127,900 $1,592.08 81,713,520 republic Yes
El Salvador 20,720 $21,800 $2,931.75 6,071,774 republic No. Legal, not practiced.
Finland 304,473 $238,000 $46,769.47 5,259,250 republic Yes (Alternative service
Alternative service
Alternative service is a form of national service performed in lieu of conscription for various reasons, such as conscientious objection, inadequate health, or political reasons. See "labour battalion" for examples of the latter case...

 available)
France 640,053 $2,555,000 $35,240.62 65,102,719 republic No (suspended in 2001)
Gambia, The 10,000 $1,040 $386.77 1,797,860 republic No
Germany 349,223 $3,306,000 $40,315.05 81,471,834 federal parliamentary republic No (abolished for peacetime
State of Defence (Germany)
The term State of Defence refers to the legal status of the Federal Republic of Germany if it is "under attack by armed force or imminently threatened with such an attack". This special status, which was created by a constitutional amendment in 1968, gives the Federal Government extraordinary...

 by federal legislature effective from 1 July 2011)
Greece 130,800 $302,000 $29,384.60 10,760,136 parliamentary republic Yes
Grenada 344 $645 $6,557.67 108,419 parliamentary democracy No (no military service)
Hungary 92,340 $132,300 $13,901.01 9,976,062 parliamentary democracy No (Peacetime conscription abolished in 2004)
India 2,973,190 $1,099,000 $972.68 1,147,995,904 federal republic No
Indonesia 1,826,440 $695,100 $1,844.53 245,613,043 republic
Iran 1,636,000 $337,900 $4,497.11 77,891,220 theocratic republic Yes
Israel 20,330 $201,300 $25,191.86 7,473,052 parliamentary democracy Yes
Jamaica 10,831 $13,740 $4,032.18 2,868,380 constitutional parliamentary democracy No
Japan 374,744 $5,391,000 $34,402.26 126,475,664 constitutional monarchy with a parliamentary government No
Jordan 91,971 $27,130 $2,644.89 6,508,271 constitutional monarchy
No. Conscription at age 18 was suspended in 1999, although all males under age 37 are required to register.
Korea, North 120,538 $28,000 $1,800.00 24,457,492 Communist state one-man dictatorship Yes
Korea, South 98,190 $986,300 $19,514.81 48,754,657 republic Yes (Alternative service
Alternative service
Alternative service is a form of national service performed in lieu of conscription for various reasons, such as conscientious objection, inadequate health, or political reasons. See "labour battalion" for examples of the latter case...

 available)
Kuwait 17,820 $117,300 $44,421.22 2,595,628 constitutional emirate Yes
Lebanon 10,230 $39,150 $6,276.90 4,143,101 Sources differ
No (abolished in 2007))
Libya 1,759,540 $77,910 $9,451.85 6,597,960 Jamahiriya (a state of the masses) in theory, governed by the populace through local councils; in practice, an authoritarian state Yes
Lithuania 65,300 $35,730 $10,725.96 3,535,547 parliamentary democracy No (Suspended on September 15, 2008)
Luxembourg 2,586 $52,430 $104,451.69 503,302 constitutional monarchy No
Macedonia, Republic of 24,856 $9,170 $3,646.55 2,077,328 parliamentary democracy No (abolished in 2006)
Malaysia 328,550 $219,000 $7,513.71 28,728,607 constitutional monarchy No
Maldives 300 $1,433 $2,842.58 394,999 republic No
Malta 316 $7,801 $18,460.73 408,333 republic No
Mexico 1,923,040 $1,004,000 $8,218.88 113,724,226 federal republic Yes
Moldova 33,371 $5,357 $978.36 4,314,377 republic Yes
Nepal 143,181 $15,110 $333.09 29,391,883 democratic republic
Netherlands 33,883 $770,300 $46,389.35 16,847,007 constitutional monarchy No. Legal, suspended since 1997 (except for Curaçao
Curaçao
Curaçao is an island in the southern Caribbean Sea, off the Venezuelan coast. The Country of Curaçao , which includes the main island plus the small, uninhabited island of Klein Curaçao , is a constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands...

 and Aruba
Aruba
Aruba is a 33 km-long island of the Lesser Antilles in the southern Caribbean Sea, located 27 km north of the coast of Venezuela and 130 km east of Guajira Peninsula...

).
New Zealand 268,021 $138,000 $31,124.18 4,290,347 parliamentary democracy No
Norway 307,442 $413,500 $84,595 4,691,849 constitutional monarchy Yes
Pakistan 778,720 $174,800 $872.88 187,342,721 federal republic No
Philippines 298,170 $188,700 $1,582.17 101,833,938 republic Yes. Legal. Practiced selectively and only rarely. However, military training (known as Citizenship Advancement Training or CAT, formerly known as Citizen's Army Training) is required as a prerequisite for graduation from high school. CAT is considered a subject in high school that lasts up to 2 hours per week.
Poland 304,459 $470,000 $10,911.71 38,441,588 republic No
Qatar 11,437 $126,500 $74,688.97 848,016 emirate No
Romania 230,340 $158,400 $7,451.95 21,904,551 republic No (ended in 2007)
Russia 16,995,800 $1,290,000 $9,124.49 140,702,096 federation Yes (Alternative service
Alternative service
Alternative service is a form of national service performed in lieu of conscription for various reasons, such as conscientious objection, inadequate health, or political reasons. See "labour battalion" for examples of the latter case...

 available)
Rwanda 24,948 $5,693 $335.10 10,186,063 republic; presidential No
Saudi Arabia 2,149,690 $434,400 $13,622.68 26,131,703 monarchy No
Seychelles 455 $919 $8,669.64 89,188 republic Yes
Singapore 682.7 $233,900 $35,427.12 4,740,737 parliamentary republic Yes
Slovenia 20,151 $46,440 $22,933.99 2,000,092 parliamentary republic No
South Africa 1,219,912 $354,400 $6,423.04 49,004,031 republic No (ended in 1994, formalized in 2002)
Spain 499,542 $1,375,000 $35,576.37 46,754,784 parliamentary monarchy No (abolished by law on December 31, 2001)
Swaziland 17,203 $3,165 $2,591.20 1,370,424 monarchy No
Switzerland 39,770 $522,400 $56,111.06 7,639,961 a confederation only in name, legally and structurally a federal republic Yes
Syria 184,050 $59,630 $1,954.98 19,747,586 republic under an authoritarian military-dominated regime Yes
Taiwan (Republic of China) 32,260 $427,000 $16,768.11 23,071,779 multiparty democracy Yes (alternative service
Alternative service
Alternative service is a form of national service performed in lieu of conscription for various reasons, such as conscientious objection, inadequate health, or political reasons. See "labour battalion" for examples of the latter case...

 available)

An all-volunteer force is planned by the end of 2014, but conscription will remain in practice thereafter.
Thailand 511,770 $312,600 $3,776.0 66,720,153 constitutional monarchy Yes
Tonga 718 $301 $1,873.06 105,916 constitutional monarchy No
Trinidad and Tobago 5,128 $21,200 $19,590.99 1,227,505 parliamentary democracy No
Turkey 770,760 $729,100 $9,322.83 78,785,548 republican parliamentary democracy Yes
United Kingdom 241,590 $2,259,000 $45,626.38 62,698,362 constitutional monarchy and Commonwealth realm No (except Bermuda Regiment
Bermuda Regiment
The Bermuda Regiment is the home defence unit of the British Overseas Territory of Bermuda. It is a single territorial infantry battalion that was formed by the amalgamation in 1965 of two originally voluntary units, the all white Bermuda Volunteer Rifle Corps and the mostly black Bermuda Militia...

United States 9,161,923 $14,620,000 $45,958.70 313,232,044 federal republic No Draft abolished in 1975 by President Gerald Ford.
Vanuatu 12,200 $721 $2,146.52 224,564 parliamentary republic No
Venezuela 882,050 $285,200 $9,084.09 27,635,743 federal republic Yes

Conscription by jurisdiction


  • Conscription in Australia
    Conscription in Australia
    Conscription in Australia, or mandatory military service also known as National Service, has a controversial history dating back to the first years of nationhood...

  • Conscription in Cyprus
    Conscription in Cyprus
    Military service in the National Guard of the Republic of Cyprus is mandatory for males born of a Cypriot parent, members of the Greek Cypriot community. Its duration is 24 months. Until 2007, conscription was optional for members of the three religious groups, i.e. Armenians, Roman Catholics , and...

  • Conscription in Canada
  • Conscription in Egypt
    Conscription in Egypt
    ' is a form of a national duty in Egypt.Conscription is a compulsory in Egypt for males of ages between 18 and 30. The service obligation is between 12 to 36 months, depending on their educational backgrounds, culture, drop-outs, etc...

  • Conscription in Finland
    Conscription in Finland
    Conscription in Finland is part of a wider, general "national defense duty" defined in the 127§ of the Constitution of Finland.Conscription can take the form of military or of civilian service. Currently, c.66% of males reaching military age do their military service, while a growing number of ...

  • Conscription in Germany
    Conscription in Germany
    Germany had conscription for male citizens between 1956 and 2011. On 22 November 2010, the German Minister of Defence proposed to the government to put conscription into abeyance on 1 July 2011...

  • Conscription in Gibraltar
  • Conscription in Greece
    Conscription in Greece
    As of 2009, Greece has mandatory military service of 9 months for men between the ages of 18 and 45. Citizens discharged from active service are normally placed in the Reserve and are subject to periodic recall of 1–10 days at irregular intervals.-Duration:Universal conscription was introduced in...

  • Conscription in Israel
    Conscription in Israel
    The conscription in Israel for all Israeli citizens over the age of 18, although Arab citizens are exempted, and other exceptions may be made on religious, physical or psychological grounds...

  • Conscription in Malaysia
  • Conscription in Mexico
    Conscription in mexico
    Military Service in Mexico currently involves all males reaching the age of eighteen years...

  • Conscription in New Zealand
  • Conscription in Russia
    Conscription in Russia
    Conscription in Russia is presently a 12 month draft, mandatory for all male citizens age 18-27, with a number of exceptions. The mandatory term of service was reduced from 18 months at the beginning of 2008.- Russian Empire and earlier times :...

  • Conscription in Serbia
    Conscription in Serbia
    As of 1 January, 2011, Serbia no longer practises mandatory military service. Prior to this, mandatory military service lasted 6 months for men. Conscientious objectors could however opt for 9 months of civil service instead....

  • Conscription in Singapore
  • Conscription in South Korea
    Conscription in South Korea
    Conscription, or mandatory military service or compulsory national service, is legislated in South Korea, with military service stated as one of the Four Constitutional Duties for all citizens...

  • Conscription in Switzerland
    Conscription in Switzerland
    Switzerland has mandatory military service for all able-bodied male citizens, who are conscripted when they reach the age of majority, though women may volunteer for any position....

  • Conscription in the Netherlands
    Conscription in the Netherlands
    Conscription in the Netherlands was first employed in 1810 by French occupying forces. Napoleon's brother Louis Bonaparte, who was King of Holland from 1806 to 1810, had tried to introduce conscription a few years earlier, unsuccessfully. Every man aged 20 years or older had to enlist. By means of...

  • Conscription in the Ottoman Empire
    Conscription in the Ottoman Empire
    -1389 forward:In 1389 a system of conscription was introduced in the Ottoman military. In times of need every town, quarter, and village should present a fully equipped conscript at the recruiting office. The new force of irregular infantrymen was called Azabs and it was used in a number of...

  • Conscription in the Republic of China
    Conscription in the Republic of China
    The Republic of China has maintained a policy of conscription for all qualified males of military age since 1949. Females from the outlying islands of Fuchien, which are geographically closest to mainland China, were also required to serve in a civil defense role, although this requirement has...

  • Conscription in the Russian Empire
  • Conscription in the United Kingdom
    Conscription in the United Kingdom
    Conscription in the United Kingdom has existed for two periods in modern times. The first was from 1916 to 1919, the second was from 1939 to 1960, with the last conscripted soldiers leaving the service in 1963...

  • Conscription in the United States
    Conscription in the United States
    Conscription in the United States has been employed several times, usually during war but also during the nominal peace of the Cold War...

  • Conscription in Turkey
    Conscription in Turkey
    In Turkey, compulsory military service applies to all male citizens from twenty to forty one years of age. Those who are engaged in higher education or vocational training programs prior to their military drafting are allowed to delay service until they have completed the programs or reach a...

  • Conscription in Western Sahara
  • Taliban conscription
    Taliban conscription
    During the Taliban administration of Afghanistan there was an extensive, varied conscription program.-Kidnapping foreigners:Prior to the collapse of their regime the Taliban made widespread use of conscription, and according to some of the Guantanamo captives, kidnapping and virtual...



Slavery


Some American libertarians oppose it because, as Rep. Ron Paul
Ron Paul
Ronald Ernest "Ron" Paul is an American physician, author and United States Congressman who is seeking to be the Republican Party candidate in the 2012 presidential election. Paul represents Texas's 14th congressional district, which covers an area south and southwest of Houston that includes...

 says, since "Conscription is wrongly associated with patriotism, when it really represents slavery and involuntary servitude." The philosopher Ayn Rand
Ayn Rand
Ayn Rand was a Russian-American novelist, philosopher, playwright, and screenwriter. She is known for her two best-selling novels The Fountainhead and Atlas Shrugged and for developing a philosophical system she called Objectivism....

 opposed it because "Of all the statist violations of individual rights in a mixed economy, the military draft is the worst. It is an abrogation of rights. It negates man’s fundamental right—the right to life—and establishes the fundamental principle of statism: that a man’s life belongs to the state, and the state may claim it by compelling him to sacrifice it in battle."

In 1917, a number of radicals and anarchists, including Emma Goldman
Emma Goldman
Emma Goldman was an anarchist known for her political activism, writing and speeches. She played a pivotal role in the development of anarchist political philosophy in North America and Europe in the first half of the twentieth century....

, challenged the new draft law in federal court arguing that it was a direct violation of the Thirteenth Amendment's prohibition against slavery and involuntary servitude. However the Supreme Court unanimously upheld the constitutionality of the draft act in the case of Arver v. United States on January 7, 1918. The decision said the Constitution gave Congress the power to declare war and to raise and support armies. The Court emphasized the principle of the reciprocal rights and duties of citizens:
"It may not be doubted that the very conception of a just government in its duty to the citizen includes the reciprocal obligation of the citizen to render military service in case of need and the right to compel.".

Economics


It can be argued that in a cost-to-benefit ratio, conscription during peace time is not worthwhile. Months or years of service amongst the most fit and capable subtracts from the productivity of the economy; add to this the cost of training them, and in some countries paying them. Compared to these extensive costs, some would argue there is very little benefit; if there ever was a war then conscription and basic training could be completed quickly, and in any case there is little threat of a war in most countries with conscription. In the United States, every male resident must register with the Selective Service System
Selective Service System
The Selective Service System is a means by which the United States government maintains information on those potentially subject to military conscription. Most male U.S. citizens and male immigrant non-citizens between the ages of 18 and 25 are required by law to have registered within 30 days of...

  on his 18th birthday, so he is available for a draft.

The cost of conscription can be related to the parable of the broken window
Parable of the broken window
The parable of the broken window was introduced by Frédéric Bastiat in his 1850 essay to illustrate why destruction, and the money spent to recover from destruction, is actually not a net-benefit to society...

. The cost of the work—in this case military service—does not disappear even if no salary is paid. The work effort of the conscripts is effectively wasted, as an unwilling workforce is extremely inefficient. The impact is especially severe in wartime, when civilian professionals are forced to fight as amateur soldiers. Not only is the work effort of the conscripts wasted and productivity lost, but professionally-skilled conscripts are also difficult to replace in the civilian workforce. Every soldier conscripted in the army is taken away from his civilian work, and away from contributing to the economy which funds the military. This is not a problem in an agrarian or pre-industrialized state where the level of education is universally low, and where a worker is easily replaced by another. However, this proves extremely problematic in a post-industrial society
Post-industrial society
If a nation becomes "post-industrial" it passes through, or dodges, a phase of society predominated by a manufacturing-based economy and moves on to a structure of society based on the provision of information, innovation, finance, and services.-Characteristics:...

 where educational levels are high and where the workforce is highly sophisticated and a replacement for a conscripted specialist is difficult to find. Even direr economic consequences result if the professional conscripted as an amateur soldier is killed or maimed for life; his work effort and productivity is irrevocably lost.

Political and moral motives



Jean Jacques Rousseau argued vehemently against professional armies, feeling it was the right and privilege of every citizen to participate to the defense of the whole society and a mark of moral decline to leave this business to professionals. He based this view on the development of the Roman republic
Roman Republic
The Roman Republic was the period of the ancient Roman civilization where the government operated as a republic. It began with the overthrow of the Roman monarchy, traditionally dated around 508 BC, and its replacement by a government headed by two consuls, elected annually by the citizens and...

, which came to an end at the same time as the Roman army changed from a conscript to professional force. Similarly, Aristotle
Aristotle
Aristotle was a Greek philosopher and polymath, a student of Plato and teacher of Alexander the Great. His writings cover many subjects, including physics, metaphysics, poetry, theater, music, logic, rhetoric, linguistics, politics, government, ethics, biology, and zoology...

 linked the division of armed service among the populace intimately with the political order of the state. Niccolò Machiavelli
Niccolò Machiavelli
Niccolò di Bernardo dei Machiavelli was an Italian historian, philosopher, humanist, and writer based in Florence during the Renaissance. He is one of the main founders of modern political science. He was a diplomat, political philosopher, playwright, and a civil servant of the Florentine Republic...

 argued strongly for conscription, seeing the professional armies as the cause of the failure of societal unity in Italy.

Other proponents such as the late William James
William James
William James was a pioneering American psychologist and philosopher who was trained as a physician. He wrote influential books on the young science of psychology, educational psychology, psychology of religious experience and mysticism, and on the philosophy of pragmatism...

 consider both mandatory military and national service
National service
National service is a common name for mandatory government service programmes . The term became common British usage during and for some years following the Second World War. Many young people spent one or more years in such programmes...

 as ways of instilling maturity in young adults. Some proponents such as Jonathan Alter
Jonathan Alter
Jonathan Alter is an American journalist and author who was a columnist and senior editor for Newsweek magazine from 1983 until 2011. He is currently a lead columnist for Bloomberg View, a new commentary website. He is also a contributing correspondent to NBC News, where since 1996 he has appeared...

 and Mickey Kaus
Mickey Kaus
Robert Michael Kaus , better known as Mickey Kaus, is an American journalist, pundit, and author best known for writing Kausfiles, a "mostly political" blog which was featured on Slate until 2010. Kaus is the author of The End of Equality and had previously worked as a journalist for Newsweek, The...

 support a draft in order to reinforce social equality, create social consciousness, break down class divisions and for young adults to immerse themselves in public enterprise.

Economic & resource efficiency



It is estimated by the British military that in a professional military, one company deployed for active duty in peacekeeping corresponds to three inactive companies at home. Salaries for each are paid from the military budget. In contrast, volunteers from a trained reserve are in their civilian jobs when they are not deployed.

Related concepts

  • Arrière-ban
    Arrière-ban
    Arrière-ban, in French customs, is a general proclamation whereby the king summons to war all his vassals and their vassals. To the Provost of Paris belongs the convoking and commanding of the arrière-ban....

  • Civil conscription
    Civil conscription
    Civil conscription is conscription used for forcing people to work in non-military projects.Civil conscription is used by various governments around the world, among them Greece., where it has been used numerous times and it is called πολιτική επιστράτευση. Temporary conscription for payment,...

  • Civilian Public Service
    Civilian Public Service
    The Civilian Public Service provided conscientious objectors in the United States an alternative to military service during World War II...

  • Corvée
    Corvée
    Corvée is unfree labour, often unpaid, that is required of people of lower social standing and imposed on them by the state or a superior . The corvée was the earliest and most widespread form of taxation, which can be traced back to the beginning of civilization...

  • Economic conscription
    Economic conscription
    Economic conscription is a term used to describe mechanisms for recruitment of personnel for the armed forces through the use of economic conditions...

  • Impressment
    Impressment
    Impressment, colloquially, "the Press", was the act of taking men into a navy by force and without notice. It was used by the Royal Navy, beginning in 1664 and during the 18th and early 19th centuries, in wartime, as a means of crewing warships, although legal sanction for the practice goes back to...

     and the Quota System
    Quota System (Royal Navy)
    The Quota System , introduced by Prime Minister William Pitt the Younger in 1795, required each English county to provide a quota of men for the Royal Navy, based on its population and the number of its seaports — London, for example, had to provide 5,704 quotamen, while Yorkshire had to...

  • Indentured servant
    Indentured servant
    Indentured servitude refers to the historical practice of contracting to work for a fixed period of time, typically three to seven years, in exchange for transportation, food, clothing, lodging and other necessities during the term of indenture. Usually the father made the arrangements and signed...

  • Involuntary servitude
    Involuntary servitude
    Involuntary servitude is a United States legal and constitutional term for a person laboring against that person's will to benefit another, under some form of coercion other than the worker's financial needs...

  • National Service
    National service
    National service is a common name for mandatory government service programmes . The term became common British usage during and for some years following the Second World War. Many young people spent one or more years in such programmes...

  • Zivildienst
    Zivildienst
    Zivildienst is the civilian branch of the national service systems in Austria and Switzerland. In Germany as well Zivildienst was the alternative service to military service until suspension of conscription in 2011...


See also

  • Alternative service
    Alternative service
    Alternative service is a form of national service performed in lieu of conscription for various reasons, such as conscientious objection, inadequate health, or political reasons. See "labour battalion" for examples of the latter case...

  • Bermudians Against the Draft
    Bermudians Against the Draft
    Bermudians Against the Draft is a joint action group established in the British Overseas Territory of Bermuda to challenge the legality of conscription based on principles of natural justice and judicial review.B.A.D...

     (BAD) - a pending court case challenging the legality of continued conscription by the Bermuda Regiment
    Bermuda Regiment
    The Bermuda Regiment is the home defence unit of the British Overseas Territory of Bermuda. It is a single territorial infantry battalion that was formed by the amalgamation in 1965 of two originally voluntary units, the all white Bermuda Volunteer Rifle Corps and the mostly black Bermuda Militia...

     as a military agency of a British Overseas Territory of the United Kingdom.
  • Bevin Boys
    Bevin Boys
    Bevin Boys were young British men conscripted to work in the coal mines of the United Kingdom, from December 1943 until 1948. Chosen at random from conscripts but also including volunteers, nearly 48,000 Bevin Boys performed vital but largely unrecognised service in the mines, many of them...

  • Levée en masse
    Levée en masse
    Levée en masse is a French term for mass conscription during the French Revolutionary Wars, particularly for the one from 16 August 1793.- Terminology :...

  • List of countries by number of troops
  • Men's Rights
    Men's rights
    Men's rights is an umbrella term, encompassing the political rights, entitlements, and freedoms given or denied to males within a nation or culture....

  • Military history
    Military history
    Military history is a humanities discipline within the scope of general historical recording of armed conflict in the history of humanity, and its impact on the societies, their cultures, economies and changing intra and international relationships....

  • Military recruitment
    Military recruitment
    Military recruitment is the act of requesting people, usually male adults, to join a military voluntarily. Involuntary military recruitment is known as conscription. Many countries that have abolished conscription use military recruiters to persuade people to join, often at an early age. To...

  • Military service
    Military service
    Military service, in its simplest sense, is service by an individual or group in an army or other militia, whether as a chosen job or as a result of an involuntary draft . Some nations require a specific amount of military service from every citizen...

  • Timeline of women's participation in warfare
  • Volunteer military
    Volunteer military
    A volunteer military or all-volunteer military is one which derives its manpower from volunteers rather than conscription or mandatory service. A country may offer attractive pay and benefits through military recruitment to attract volunteers...


Further reading



  • Burk, James (April 1989). "Debating the Draft in America," Armed Forces and Society p. vol. 15: pp. 431–448.
  • Challener, Richard D. The French theory of the nation in arms, 1866-1939 (1955)
  • Chambers, John Whiteclay. To Raise an Army: The Draft Comes to Modern America (1987)
  • Flynn, George Q. (1998 33(1): 5-20). "Conscription and Equity in Western Democracies, 1940-75," Journal of Contemporary History in JSTOR Looks at citizens' responses to military conscription in several democracies since the French Revolution.
  • Krueger, Christine, and Sonja Levsen, eds. War Volunteering in Modern Times: From the French Revolution to the Second World War (Palgrave Macmillan 2011)
  • Pfaffenzeller, Stephan. 2010. “Conscription and Democracy: The Mythology of Civil— Military Relations.” Armed Forces & Society
    Armed Forces & Society
    Armed Forces & Society is a quarterly peer-reviewed academic journal that publishes scholarly articles and book reviews on civil–military relations, military sociology, military institutions, conflict management, arms control, peacekeeping, conflict resolution, military contracting, terrorism, and...

    April Vol. 36 pp. 481-504, doi:10.1177/0095327X09351226 http://afs.sagepub.com/content/36/3/481.abstract