Midway through fiscal year, desertions from Army approach last year's total
By Lisa Burgess, Stars and Stripes
European edition, Friday, July 1, 2005
ARLINGTON, Va. — Just six months into the government's fiscal year, the Army was carrying almost the same number of deserters on its books as the service registered for all of 2004.
War and stop-loss policies, which prevent voluntary separations from the military, are the likely culprits for the increase, according to Army researchers.
While the numbers include active duty and activated reserve components, officials could not provide specifics on soldiers on Rest and Recuperation, or how many deserters were recruits, etc.
Between Oct. 1, 2004 — the start of fiscal 2005 — and March 30, the Army registered 2,518 desertions, according to figures provided June 28 by an Army spokeswoman, Lt. Col. Pamela Hart.
In all 12 months of fiscal 2004, the total number of Army deserters was 2,723, Hart said.
The apparent rise in Army desertions reverses a reduction in such absences that began soon after the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001.