SIRC Media Watch Archive
Comment and Opinion – December 2002

Too fat to die? A recent article in the Times, US troops are losing the battle of the bulge, revealed that being overweight is not just the preserve of the couch potato. According to the article, the Times had seen a report, commissioned by the Pentagon that: "is expected to say that 53.9 per cent of US military personnel over the age of 20 would be classified as too fat to fight under federal obesity standards. A fifth of those aged under 20 would also fail the fat test."
As the US prepares for war there is a concern that their combat readiness may be compromised by the weight of their GIs. So it has got to this stage: the era of plenty has created an army that is too fat to fight. You would be forgiven for thinking that this embarrassing situation is a sad reflection of our times, but it isn't entirely new. Full article