Pentagon Will Train Recruits Holding Green Cards Following Court Order


The Department of Defense will begin assigning thousands of immigrants holding green cards to basic training, reversing a Trump administration policy that delayed their service as they were subjected to enhanced background checks.

The policy change, first reported by the Washington Post, follows a preliminary injunction issued by U.S. District Judge Jon S. Tigar in the Northern District of California in mid-November. He sided with two lawful permanent residents who argued that they were discriminated against by the Pentagon policy that delayed their service for more than a year and left them in limbo between a military and civilian career.  

The lawsuit was filed on behalf of Jiahao Kuang of San Leandro, Calif., who came to the U.S. from China in 2004 at the age of 8 and Deron Cooke of Trenton, N.J., who had emigrated from Jamaica in 2015.

The two immigrant recruits were represented by the American Civil Liberties Union which had issued this statement in November.

“Tigar’s ruling finds that the Defense Department provided no rational justification for the policy change, stating that it provided no evidence indicating that lawful permanent resident enlistees posed more of a risk than U.S. citizens.

” ‘The ruling serves yet another blow to the administration’s anti-immigrant agenda,’ said Sameer Ahmed, an attorney with the ACLU Foundation of Southern California. ‘This decision affirms that there is no justification for discriminating against individuals who want to risk their lives for this country simply because of their immigration status.’ ”

A spokeswoman for the Pentagon, Air Force Lt. Col. Carla Gleason, said the Defense Department is complying with the Nov. 16 preliminary injunction.

“[Lawful permanent residents] will be assigned to initial entry training in the same manner as any other recruits, based on the availability of training slots, open class dates, career field quotas and recruit preferences, all of which may affect a particular individual’s ship date,” she said in an e-mail to NPR.

Gleason added that there are currently 20,000 non-U.S. citizens serving on active duty.

In his ruling, Judge Tigar wrote that the Defense Department had not substantiated its national security concerns. Rather, he noted that even high-ranking Pentagon officials had acknowledged that the policy of restricting green card holders would “impair military recruiting goals and impair military readiness.”

The Washington Post reports that the policy change, although prompted by the court ruling, comes as the Army is having recruitment problems.

“The Army sent 4,600 green-card holders to recruit training in 2016, and 3,600 in 2017, according to data provided by the Pentagon. That number plummeted to 513 in 2018, as the Army also missed its recruiting goal in 2018 for the first time since 2005 by about 6,500 soldiers, despite spending more than $200 million on bonuses. The service declined to say how many green-card holders are in its system waiting to ship to training, citing the open litigation.”

11 thoughts on “Pentagon Will Train Recruits Holding Green Cards Following Court Order

  1. The pope’s little brown army is true! This is outrageous! Throw it in with all the other OUTRAGES!

    Americans are telling the “elite” to stuff their murder wars by not enlisting in the military, the army at least, so now they will get green card holders!

    And here we sit day after day watching the destruction of our and our future generations country and way of life while the criminal minds in govt. get richer in mammon and power.

    Screw it! I’m disgusted!

  2. So now let’s see, they already waste billions on arms that don’t work and planes and whatever that don’t work in order to fight and die for “the master race” (Talmud style) so now they want to “train” folks who can’t speak the language, so now they waste money on hiring folks whose Spanish isn’t good enough, or kick non-Hispanics out of the military?? And, as Mary said, they will have no problem killing nationals, starting with those whose Spanish isn’t good enough.. Just think, some prissy sargent who doesn’t know Spanish trying to discipline and train MS-13…. Boy this will end up real well 🙁

    1. I don’t know what kids you speak of, they certainly aren’t my children. And they aren’t all the kids in this country. Furthermore this is not a valid reason to enlist foreigners in the army.

    2. My grandson is almost 4 and weighs possibly close to 80 pounds as my son carries him on his back, while my daughter could also do that, as well as change a flat tire and change a fan belt. And both can walk at least a mile (which in city-speak is 20 blocks…) To lump all millennials into one group of wusses is an insult to all millennials who were homeschooled, most rural millennials, and most millennials now in the armed services. I bet some 20-something year old killed in Afghanistan recently for no reason could carry 80 pounds on his back!

      Here is why these illegals or legals or whatever are being given a chance to sign up to serve Israel–because OUR CHILDREN ARE REFUSING TO DO SO! Further, if the draft is re-instituted, the anti-war movement in the US will grow so fast the CPEs won’t be able to stop it! Why do you think they haven’t reinstituted the draft? Because they are afraid of the anti-war movement that will blossom if they do! All these “green card” holders are, are mercenaries!

  3. Katie I didn’t say it right , but most young guys are over weight and they can’t make it though basic training . But they been letting green card holder in the army for many years this did not just start .

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