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Rough DraftCold War Military Manpower Policy and the Origins of Vietnam-Era Draft Resistance$
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Amy Rutenberg

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9781501739361

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: January 2020

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9781501739361.001.0001

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“Really First-Class Men”

“Really First-Class Men”

The Early Cold War, 1948–1953

(p.69) Chapter 3 “Really First-Class Men”
Rough Draft

Amy J. Rutenberg

Cornell University Press

Chapter four focuses on the development of the Selective Service’s decision to channel men into certain occupations and domestic arrangements. Under its policy of manpower channeling, the Selective Service used deferments to bribe men to pursue jobs deemed to be in the national interest and to marry and have children. In granting these deferments, the Selective Service altered its mission – defining itself as a civil defense agency as well as a procurer of military manpower – and the definition of service to the state. Not only did it accept civilian pursuits as national service as it had during the Korean War, but by the late 1950s, it explicitly encouraged certain men to fight communism and fulfill their citizenship obligations by remaining civilians. Through this policy, the Selective Service made social engineering one of its main priorities.

Keywords:   civil defense, Cold War, deferment, manpower channeling, Selective Service, social engineering

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