Sunday, August 07, 2005
Peace Corps policy change?
Peace Corps volunteers around the world have long had to overcome suspicions that Peace Corps was a front for CIA operations, and Peace Corps headquarters has always taken steps to distance the organization from the U.S. military. Before I left for Nicaragua, the information packet I received from the Peace Corps specifically forbid volunteers to wear camouflage or any clothing that said Army, Navy, etc., and told us not to use large army green duffel bags as luggage. So this legislation that permits army recruits to fulfill some of their military obligation by serving in the Peace Corps seems like a fairly drastic policy change, especially since the Peace Corps director Gaddi H. Vasquez didn't know anything about it until the provision had already been passed. I've got nothing against former members of the military serving in the Peace Corps, but something tells me that allowing active members to volunteer in the Peace Corps might impact the credibility of the organization in a negative way.