April 20, 2005
April Fools Joke Backfires: No 14 Year Old Recruits
An article, published by Pointblank Media, has been circulating on the
Internet that alleges there is a new military recruiting program that allows
14 year olds to join the military, and receive pay while still underage.
Those who join this “pre-enlistment program” are then obligated to go into a
combat role upon turning 18.
The Center contacted Pointblank Media in Des Moines, Iowa.
The editor told us, “It was an April Fools joke.” The editor stated that
he thought that some elements were so outrageous that everyone would realize
that it couldn’t be true. He said that they are getting 100 calls and emails
a day, and they wanted us to tell everyone that it is a joke, and to just
Some things in the story are obviously untrue, like the pay they receive is
an advance on their combat pay which would have to be repaid if the child
was killed or disabled before actually serving 2 years in combat, but the
well written story has many elements of truth, like statistics about the
real recruiting shortfall. It also includes ‘quotes’ from parents and
military officials. These elements of the story are apparently confusing
many people, causing them to think this is a legitimate story.
THIS STORY IS NOT TRUE. Please spread the word.