Obama was a Democrat president of America for two terms. His first presidential victory was in 2008, where he won Republican John McCain in the U.S. election. Four years later, he also defeated Republican Mitt Romney in the 2012 election to serve as the United States President for the second term. Obama was born in Hawaii, making him the first president that was born there; he is also known as the first black President, multiracial President, non-white President.
The question is: did Obama serve in the military?
We have to consider the question, did Obama serve in the military? It is because, as the American President, he was also the Chief of the Armed Forces. Given this, having military knowledge is an asset to an aspiring U.S. President. However, Obama did not serve in the military. He was very young during the Vietnam War, and when he came of age, he chose not to serve in the military.
Why Didn’t Obama Serve In The Military?
The required age to serve in the military is from eighteen years and above. Obama was only three years old when the Vietnam War started. Thus, as a child, there was no need for him to enlist in the draft.
At the time when Obama got to 18years, there was no draft. The Vietnam War had come to an end, and it was no longer a requirement for him to serve in the military. Thus, he decided not to serve in the military but to serve his country differently.
Many Americans criticized his choice of service as they see sacrificial service in the army as one of the necessary traits of a true leader. However, Obama was not the only U.S. president who did not serve in the military. Other past Us Presidents that did not serve in the military or fought in the Vietnam War include Donald Trump, Bill Clinton, etc. Although many Americans are concerned about military service, becoming the President does not necessarily require military service of any kind.
Some U.S. Presidents Who Had No Military Experience
He is the current President of the United States of America. Trump started his term from 2017 to the present. According to history, he has no previous experience in the military or government.
Bill could not fight during the Vietnam War because of deferment for education. He was the Governor of Arkansas for two terms. It was after this; he went ahead to become the President of the United States from 1993 to 2001.
Although he was the leader of the American Revolution, he did not serve in the military. He worked as a lawyer and assisted in negotiating the end of the American Revolution. He was also the first American Vice President under Thomas Jefferson.
Thomas Jefferson is one of the founding fathers of America. He served in the Continental Congress and Virginia legislature during the American Revolutionary War. He was also the governor of Virginia.
John Quincy Adams:
He was the U.S. President from 1825 to 1829. He never served in the military but was a significant influence in the presidential cabinet. He served in the U.S. Senate and also the Massachusetts State Senate.
Martin Van Buren:
He was the President from 1837 to 1841. He was one of those who helped to form the New Democratic Party. The record has it that he was the first U.S. President born as a citizen.
Millard Fillmore was the President of the United States of America from 1850 to 1853. He had experience in government because he was the vice president under Zachary Taylor. However, he lacked military experience.
In his case, he ought to have served in the military because he was one of those drafted during the Civil War. However, he chose instead to pay a substitute of $150 instead. Doing this was a legal option under the Conscription Act of 1863. He served as President of the United States in two non-consecutive terms.
The Presidents That Served In The Military
The U.S. Department in charge of Veterans Affairs affirmed that 29 presidents out of the 45 presidents that ruled the United States of America had military experiences. Nonetheless, serving in the military is not a criterion for becoming the President. However, it is an added advantage because the President also acts as the commander of the American military.
During the presidential campaign in 2004 between John Kerry and George W. Bush, there was a big discussion on military service as one of the political issues. Although President Donald Trump could not serve in the Vietnam War due to a medical condition, he is fond of military parades and trappings. He also refers to his cabinet staff as “my generals.”
The following is a list of American presidents who had the military experience:
George W. Bush: He fought during the Vietnam War at the Stateside. He also served under the Texas Air National Guard. Also, he became the first lieutenant.
George H. W. Bush. Still from the Bush family, he served in the United States Navy under the United States Naval Reserve. He also served in the capacity of a junior grade lieutenant during World War II. He also received the award of the Distinguished Flying Cross.
Ronald Reagan: Ronald Reagan was a captain. He served as a captain at the United States Army Air Corps in the Army Reserve. He also fought during World War II.
Jimmy Carter: He was a lieutenant in the United States Navy during World War II. He also worked with the U.S. Navy in the submarines. He received training in the Navy Academy.
Gerald Ford: The former U.S. President was a lieutenant commander in the United States Naval Reserve during World War II.
Richard Nixon: He was a commander in the United States Naval Reserve during World War II. He also received an award of Two Service Stars.
Lyndon B. Johnson: Lyndon Johnson was a commander in the United States Naval Reserve during World War II. He also received an award, which was the award of Silver Star.
John F. Kennedy: He was a lieutenant in the United States Navy during World War II. He received the award of a Purple Heart. At some point, he also received a Marine Corps and Navy Medal
Dwight D. Eisenhower: He served under the United States Army. He was also the Army General during World War I. During World War II, and he was the Supreme Allied Commander in Europe.
Harry S. Truman: He was a colonel in the Reserve Corps Army. He also fought during World War I.
Theodore Roosevelt: He was a colonel in the United States Army. He fought during the Spanish-American War. He is also the only U.S. President that has the award of a Medal of Honor.
William McKinley: William McKinley served as a Brevet Major in the United States Army. He also fought during the American Civil War.
Benjamin Harrison: He was one of the past American Presidents that fought during the American Civil War. He grew to the ranks of a Brigadier General in the United States Army.
Chester A. Arthur: The past President was a Brigadier General in the New York State Militia. He fought during the American Civil War
James Garfield: James Garfield served as a Major General in the United States Army. Not just that, he fought during the American Civil War.
Rutherford B. Hayes: He was a major general in the United States Army. He also fought in the American Civil War.
Ulysses S. Grant: He was a General in the United States Army during the American Civil War. He is also the Mexican-American War.
Andrew Johnson: Andrew Johnson was a Brigadier General in the United States Army during the American Civil War.
Abraham Lincoln: Lincoln was a captain at the Illinois State Militia. He also fought during the Black Hawk War.
James Buchanan: He was a private soldier in the Pennsylvania State Militia during the 1812 War.
Franklin Pierce: He was a Brigadier General in the United States Army. He also fought during the Mexican-American War.
Zachary Taylor: He was a Major General in the United States Army. He fought during the Mexican-American War, the 1812 War, Second Seminole War, and Black Hawk War.
James K. Polk: He was a Colonel in the Tennessee State Militia. However, he did not witness any war service.
John Tyler: He was a Captain in the Virginia Militia. He also fought during the 1812 War.
The people that served in the military during the American Revolution and later became President
William Henry Harrison: He was a Major General in the United States Army. He fought in the 1812 War and Northwest Indian War.
Andrew Jackson: He was a Major General in the United States Army. He fought during the First Seminole War, Creek War, American Revolutionary War, and the 1812 War.
James Monroe: He was a Major in the Continental Army during the American Revolutionary War.
George Washington: President Washington was a General in the United States Army, Virginia militia, and also the Continental Army. He fought during the American Revolutionary War, Indian and French War.
Serving in the military is not much of the criteria needed to win an election. Although many U.S. citizens were eager to get an answer to the question, did Obama serve in the military? However, it did not pose any threat during Obama’s campaign.
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