(National Sentinel) Military Readiness: As war drums continue to beat in anticipation of a full-scale conflict with North Korea, disturbing new data indicate just how unprepared American youth would be for any conflict that became global in nature.

For years the military has had to recruit from a shrinking field of qualified potential soldiers, sailors, airmen, Marines and Coast Guardsmen. Now the situation has turned critical, as reported by the Washington Examiner:

Americans continue to get fatter and it’s delivering a huge blow to the country, both in higher health care costs and undercutting military recruiting, according to a huge new study.

And while the rate of obesity growth is leveling off, the costs aren’t. The report, for example, said additional health care for obese adults and children is $150 billion a year and billions of dollars more in lost worker productivity.

It is also costly to the military, said the report. Nearly one-quarter of military recruits are rejected because they are obese and it costs the Pentagon $1 billion a year in added health care costs for obese troops and their families.

More stunning, said the comprehensive 101-page report: ” 70 percent of today’s youth are not fit to serve in the military due to obesity or being overweight, criminal records, drug misuse or educational deficits.”

Also hurting military recruiting: Rising drug use, criminal records, falling high school graduation rates, low aptitude.

It’s a dangerous world, and while you always hope that diplomacy will rule the day, it isn’t always successful in preventing war. Should the U.S find itself in another global conflagration, it will be at a distinct manpower disadvantage, thanks to our sedentary lifestyle.

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