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Future prospects for draftees are improved by the new reserve regulations contained in a recent announcement from the Defense Department.
The regulations, slated to take effect on April 1, reduce the ready reserve requirements for draftees to two years, and offer them the option of serving six months active duty, instead of the mandatory two years.
Previously, those inducted into the Army were required to serve two years of active service, three years ready reserve, and one year in the standby reserve. Draftees will now spend two years of their six year "obligation" on active duty, two years in the ready reserve, and the last two years as standbys.
If they prefer, volunteers between the ages of 18 1/2 and 25 can now take part in the "six month plan," which will permit them to spend six months in intensive training and the other 5 1/2 years in the ready reserve. This choice was formerly open only to 17-18 1/2 year olds. Army Secretary Wilbur M. Brucker said that the changes came as "new measures to improve combat readiness of the Army reserve components."
The normal 18-year-old who enlists under this plan is required to spend 7 1/2 years in the reserves, 4 1/2 as an active member, and three as an inactive one.
The change in regulations are the result of a reoganization of reserves, begun in October, 1955. At that time an overall reserve Plan was initiated, which established the sixth month plan for those aged 17 to 18 1/2. By encouraging people to enlist under the new plan, and by changing the reserve structure, the Army hopes to acquire a modern, always prepared backlog of reservists
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