Serving an Adopted Home

By: Joel Hernandez


The U.S. military has fought with a military of immigrants since the revolution. In a country born of immigrants It's expected to have a military comprised of them but, over the years the number of immigrants in the military has gradually minimized. Originally comprised of over half of immigrants in the early 1800s, now there is only less then 5% immigrants in the military. Most in this percentage are of Hispanic heritage with Asians following up. The U.S. has encouraged the recruiting of immigrants because of their higher abilities in certain areas.

Are they more wanted?

The military has encouraged the recruiting of the immigrant population, mainly for their linguistic and diversified abilities. Being a diverse military is important because of the globalization of the United States.

Does America want immigrants in their military?

There are many Americans that don't approve immigration as a whole, as many don't want immigrants in the U.S. military. There are many compelling stories of many illegal immigrants who served the country they called home.

Silvestre Santana Herrera

Herrera was born 1917 in Mexico during the Influenza epidemic, his parents had died when he was very young. His Uncle, thought to be his father, brought 18 month old Herrera to the United States illegally in hopes of a better life. World War II broke out and the U.S. put out a military draft, Herrera was drafted. Before Herrera was to sign up, his uncle explained to him that he is not an american, his real parents had died years ago, and that he does not have to go fight for a country that's not his. Herrera responded to his uncle "I thought, I'm going anyway. I didn't want anybody to die in my place...I felt that I had adopted my country that had been so nice to me." Herrera had the perfect chance to dodge the war but instead left behind a wife and 3 children to fight a war for his adopted home. Herrera returned with a shattered leg and was awarded the Medal of Honor for his heroics.

Are illegals allowed into the military today?

Many illegal immigrants have joined the military in the past in hopes of citizenship and a new life to avoid their unwanted pasts they behind in their countries. After 9/11 the U.S. closed the military to the illegals do to "security" reasons. The U.S. has tried to allow undocumented immigrants to join the military but the GOP can never agree on that subject.

Works Cited

Batalova, Jeanne. "Immigrants in the U.S. Armed Forces." Migration Policy Institute. N.p., May-June 2015. Web. 9 Sept. 2015.

Domenech, Ben. "Only Traitors Want To Let Illegal Immigrants Join The Military." The Federalist. N.p., 15 May 2015. Web. 9 Sept. 2015.

"Immigrants in the Military - Fact Sheet." One America. N.p., n.d. Web. 9 Sept. 2015.