selective service

In the U.S., selective service is the formal term for the draft, or required military service. The last time selective service was used this way was during the Vietnam War.

The federal agency that's responsible for keeping a list of people who are eligible to serve in the military, and for drafting them if necessary, is the Selective Service System. Selective service means being selected to serve, a gentler way to think about being required to fight in a war. Even today, when an American man reaches the age of 18, he is legally obligated to register for selective service.

Definitions of selective service
  1. noun
    compulsory military service
    synonyms: conscription, draft, muster
    see moresee less
    levy, levy en masse
    the act of drafting into military service
    type of:
    militarisation, militarization, mobilisation, mobilization
    act of assembling and putting into readiness for war or other emergency: "mobilization of the troops"
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