I agree with your observations and insights based on how you framed it for the most part.
GEN McChrystal recently proposed bring back the draft. I have been discussing this concept for a few years now and support it for the same reasons he does.
I think if we would have had a draft, we might have avoided Iraq...at least politically.
When the public is not invested in the process and is detached from it...it is a dangerous situaiton to be in. The draft is a means of investment for the public.
I think a big part of the issue deals with the perspective of threat from both sides. It has to be balanced. Threat that if you support it, you also may have to go, or you might have to send your child or neighbor.
Looking back, I think there are some very interesting reasons why we abandoned the draft. One of the big ones is it gave a great deal of control over to the government on the use of the military.
Thanks for your comments George.