National Affairs: Dubious Value

Last week Secretary of Defense Louis Johnson renewed Harry Truman's oft-made request for universal military training for all boys between 17 and 20 years old. Politically, U.M.T. had suddenly acquired a lot of congressional support as a fine-looking gesture of preparedness, which, incidentally, had long been demanded by veterans' outfits whose members will go to the polls in November. But militarily, events had taken from U.M.T. whatever value it might once have had. The Administration was asking for it without really wanting it.

On its face, U.M.T. was an appealing idea. At less cost and without the disruption caused by maintaining big...

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