10 U.S.C. § 504 - U.S. Code - Unannotated Title 10. Armed Forces § 504. Persons not qualified
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Insanity, desertion, felons, etc.--No person who is insane, intoxicated, or a deserter from an armed force, or who has been convicted of a felony, may be enlisted in any armed force. However, the Secretary concerned may authorize exceptions, in meritorious cases, for the enlistment of deserters and persons convicted of felonies.
Citizenship or residency.-- A person may be enlisted in any armed force only if the person is one of the following:
A national of the United States, as defined in section 101(a)(22) of the Immigration and Nationality Act ( 8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(22) ).
An alien who is lawfully admitted for permanent residence, as defined in section 101(a)(20) of the Immigration and Nationality Act ( 8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(20) ).
A person described in section 341 of one of the following compacts:
Notwithstanding paragraph (1), the Secretary concerned may authorize the enlistment of a person not described in paragraph (1) if the Secretary determines that such enlistment is vital to the national interest.
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