March 18th, 2009
02:25 PM ET
5 years ago

Pentagon to end unpopular 'stop-loss' program

The military will use incentive programs to encourage extending service.
The military will use incentive programs to encourage extending service.

WASHINGTON (CNN) – The military will phase out its "stop-loss" program - the controversial practice of holding troops beyond their enlistment dates - for all but extraordinary situations, Defense Secretary Roberts Gates announced on Wednesday.

The military will use incentive programs to encourage extending service. Soldiers who have been extended already will get a monthly payment of $500, retroactive to the date Congress passed the law to pay them.

The stop-loss program was put into place to ensure that units deployed fully. Those whose enlistment dates were to end in the middle of their unit's deployment could have their tour prolonged.

Currently, the Army is the only service that uses the stop-loss program. As of January 2009, 13,217 soldiers had tours extended under the policy.

The Army also used the stop-loss policy during Operation Desert Shield, and after September 11.


Filed under: Pentagon • Robert Gates
soundoff (14 Responses)
  1. I think you will

    see a dramatic increase in morale

    Bush was using these boys until they dropped

    what a nightmare he was and is

    March 18, 2009 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  2. Rodney

    It's about time they ended the indentured servitude of our nation's finest volunteers. I'll be celeberating with my fellow vets tonight.

    March 18, 2009 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  3. The Broker.

    I just all thes comments on live. People who live and died for America.
    The why was Borack Obama elected? He served nobody, did nothing to defend the USA. They don't know for sure he is A Real American. The Courts won't allow any DNA on Obama.

    March 18, 2009 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  4. Gorbashov - Long Beach, Ca.

    It's about time!

    March 18, 2009 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  5. Bob Indianapolis

    It's about time! Between the suicides and the PTSD, a broken military is another sad legacy of the past 8 years...

    March 18, 2009 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  6. sherry

    Both times when the Bushes were president.......Figures

    March 18, 2009 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  7. Ray Fisher

    Gotta hand it to our President, he knows how to get things done. The end of stop loss signals a return to humanity for our brave troops, no more slave labor!!!

    March 18, 2009 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  8. Veteran in Kansas

    This is good news, simply because it became over used.

    March 18, 2009 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  9. yuri

    Atta boy, Gates! Let's come up with a few more invitin' incentives for the stupendously splendid soldiers , so that they can serve with more superlative and superior valor.

    March 18, 2009 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  10. Brandon

    I guess those of us who were stop lossed for 14 months prior to October of '08 miss out on our big pay day. How convenient for the DoD.

    March 18, 2009 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  11. Alice Newman Center Harbor NH

    The money was allocated by Congress to pay these men in October 2008.

    The Pentagon has yet to figure out a plan on how to use the money.

    The Pentagon and AIG have a lot in common... no concern for real people.

    March 18, 2009 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  12. rena

    Yeah! My husband gets to retire and not go back to war for the 4th time. I don't care about the money, just the fact that we can become a normal family. Thank you Jesus!!! Yahoooooo! It is a great day for me.

    March 18, 2009 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  13. thomas

    PEACE – try that for an incentive?
    People Enjoying A Cohesive Existence

    March 18, 2009 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
  14. Duke Caruthers

    I'm so with the soldiers who will not accept payment to extend. I would not work for this president under any circumstance.

    March 18, 2009 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |

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