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U.S. Army Weeds Out Fat Soldiers

Updated on December 12, 2012

Well, this is actually rather shocking. We know of the fat stereotype for cops, stopping in at the donut shop when they do not need to. But, the US Army is under intense pressure because of the budget to weed out and dismiss more soldiers to thin out the ranks. In the old days (1990s) they could reduce ranks for being homosexual, taking drugs, being crazy. Today, if you are fat and obese, you are a contender to be ousted.

Between 1998-2010, the number of active duty soldiers that were obese tripled. That is 5% or 86,000 troops classified as obese. This prompted the weeding out to begin when a soldier was deemed obese and fat. So far, 1625 soldiers have been booted out for simply being in this state. If a soldier is in this classification, commanders have little discretion in how to handle the soldier. This program is not new, by 1995, the Army had discharged 3000 obese soldiers.

During wartime, obese soldiers are overlooked because the service needs bodies. Now, the trend is to reduce the size for the budget and obese soldiers are prime target. In 2009, the Army said that 75% of all applicants to join the Army were obese and rejected.

What does this say about our society?


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    • profile image


      5 years ago

      It's really not. When I joined the AF in 1998 there was a max allowable weight based on your height. If you exceeded that you had to taped to determine you body fat. This was based on a formula using your neck and waist measurements. If you failed you were put on the "fat boy program" and kicked if you didn't get under the limit. The other services had the same thing. Nothing new here.

      It's just been in recent years that the AF incorporated waist size into the PT test. Also, If you hit a 40" waist you automatically fail. It doesn't matter if you are 5' or 7' tall.

    • perrya profile imageAUTHOR


      5 years ago

      Discharging one for being obese is new

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      Dude, this is absolutely nothing new. The worst (not most physically demanding) is the AF PT test. They assign points based on your waist measurement without regard to you height or overall body mass. A person who is 6'5" receives points based on the same circumference as a person who is 5'6". Little dudes who run fast always get the best scores. It's been that way for a long time.


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