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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I feel safer....you?

"The Army Reserve, a force of some 200,000 part-time soldiers who provide key support in Iraq and Afghanistan with medics, engineers and truck drivers, "is rapidly degenerating into a `broken' force'" its top general has told senior Army leaders.

"Lt. Gen. James "Ron" Helmly, the chief of the Army Reserve, in a blunt and detailed memo cited the demands of overseas commitments and the unwillingness of Army and Pentagon officials to change "dysfunctional" policies that are hampering the Army Reserve on issues ranging from training and extension of service time to the mobilization of his soldiers.

"The Dec. 20 memo, obtained by The Baltimore Sun, said that in meeting the "current demands" of Iraq and Afghanistan, the Army Reserve is in "grave danger" of being unable to meet other missions in Pentagon contingency plans or help with domestic emergencies "and is rapidly degenerating into a `broken' force."

More here:
http://news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=stor...says&printer=1

Congrats Dubya Inc.!
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Great.....

US seeks to buy ammunition from Taiwan as stocks run low after Iraq: report

"The United States is planning to buy hundreds of millions of bullets from Taiwan in the first such deal as its supplies are running low after wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, a report said.

"Citing Taiwanese military sources, the United Evening News said Washington had made the request to acquire some 300 million 5.56-millimeter bullets for rifles for an estimated two billion Taiwan dollars (62.5 million US).

"The deal was yet to be finalized pending price negotiations, it said.

"An unnamed general quoted by the paper said it would be the first time for Washington, Taiwan's leading arms supplier, to acquire arms from the island."

More here:
http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmp...1521&ncid=1480
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Sure to go over like a fart in an elevator...

Army wants reservists for longer tours

"Stretched thin by the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the Army is considering a National Guard and Reserve policy shift that could result in part-timers' being called to active duty multiple times for up to two years each time, a senior Army general said Thursday."

More here:
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/6796550/
 

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Great. Who will sign up to be a reservist after that? Might as well go AD from the beginning, and save yourself the trouble of of wondering when/if you are going.......and who do we plan to mobilize if disaster strikes here, the boyscouts?
 

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The Army is being run ragged. They are having a huge cross over into the army (I think the campaign is called "Cross from the Blue" or something like that) campaign going on from ther Navy And AF. Not many people are willing to do it, even though they are offering huge pay increases and bonuses.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Indeed:
http://www.goarmy.com/btg/index.jsp

More along the same lines:

"In putting together a force to rotate into Iraq starting this summer the fourth rotation since the war began the Army found itself with a smaller proportion of Guard and Reserves available because there just weren't enough left.

''We've tapped 'em out,'' the Army official said Thursday, speaking only on condition of anonymity because the manpower question has not been settled within the Pentagon.

The Army has about 135,000 soldiers in Iraq and Kuwait [note that this total does not include Marine units], and the official said that for planning purposes the service is figuring it will have to maintain that level for another four or five years. That's an astounding level of commitment, considering that the Army has many other obligations, including deterring war on the Korean peninsula and keeping peace in the Balkans.

***

"When President Bush made the decision to invade Iraq and topple Saddam Hussein's government in March 2003, battlefield success came so quickly that military planners foresaw withdrawing 50,000 U.S. troops within weeks, with even more coming home in the fall of 2003. Instead, the size of the U.S. force there has actually grown and now stands at the highest level of the entire war."

More here:
http://www.boston.com/dailynews/007/...ns_on_AP.shtml
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Somewhat related...

General says Iraq war taking toll on Alabama Guard

"The turmoil in Iraq is keeping an increasing number of Alabamians from joining the Army National Guard, and it will take several years before recruitment and retention numbers will bounce back for the nation's biggest per-capita Guard, Maj. Gen. Mark Bowen said Friday.

"We won't get back to normal for another four, five years," Bowen told The Associated Press after speaking to legislators at a budget hearing."

More here:
http://www.al.com/newsflash/regional...st=alabamanews

Makes one wonder how many other alarm bells are going off across the 50 states.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
More rumblings from the Guard ranks....

Mass. State Guard boss raps deployment extensions

"As speculation swirls about a possible end to the two-year cap on overseas deployments for part-time soldiers, the state's top National Guard commander yesterday said any change to current policy would have ``disastrous effects.''

"Altering the current two-year rule would change the very nature of the Massachusetts National Guard from a reserve force to a full-time force,'' Maj. Gen. George W. Keefe said in a written statement.

"Keefe's comments come in the middle of an uproar over speculation that the Army wants Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld to ask Congress to revoke the so-called "two-year rule."

More here:
http://news.bostonherald.com/localRe...rticleid=64191
 

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Kind of related:

I checked my messages yesterday (haven't in several days). I had 3, not 1 or 2, but 3 messages from the Army Reserve and National Guard.
I'm in the IRR.

I'm thanking our lucky stars (and crossing fingers) that dh will be completely out of the IRR in less than 30 days.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Quote:

Originally Posted by mum2a&a
I checked my messages yesterday (haven't in several days). I had 3, not 1 or 2, but 3 messages from the Army Reserve and National Guard.
I'm in the IRR.
I'd be screening calls for a long time. Best of luck to the two of you.

In the meantime, a piece by the co-author of the book "We Were Soldiers Once ... and Young":

"Reserve and Guard re-enlistment rates are heading south. The number of active-duty soldiers transitioning to Reserve or Guard slots is plummeting. This is the inevitable price of trying to do a 300,000-soldier job with 138,000 soldiers. It is the inevitable result of rosy expectations on the part of President Bush, Vice President Dick Cheney and Secretary Rumsfeld of what awaited us after winning the three-week military victory in Iraq. It is precisely what was predicted in this column more than a year ago under the headline "How to Destroy a Great Army."

"There are those who say the Army is already broken. Others say the stress cracks will finally widen into open fractures on the fourth Iraq rotation next fall. Either way, both schools of thought are in agreement that, once broken, the process of repairing the institutional damage could take a decade, just as it did in the bleak years after we pulled out of Vietnam.

"Lest you think there is no good news whatsoever, let me hasten to tell you that this Army, like the one that was broken in Vietnam, contains within its ranks the NCOs and junior officers who will eventually repair the damage done by arrogant civilian leadership.

"In Iraq and Afghanistan the innovation and good tactical thinking is being demonstrated at the lowest levels, by platoon leaders - young second lieutenants just out of ROTC or Officer Candidate School or West Point. They and their platoon sergeants and the young soldiers they lead have been given responsibility far beyond their years or training.

"They are being asked to be diplomats, civil engineers, even politicians in a hostile and dangerous environment and they are finding ways to make their own piece of ground a bit better and safer for the Iraqis who live there and for themselves."

More here:
http://www.realcities.com/mld/krwash...printstory.jsp
 

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Thanks, RowansDad.

We're just taking it day by day, like everything else. My dh received a registered letter from the Army, Tuesday, I think. It scared us both. Turned out to be no big deal, but still...nerve-wracking, just the same.

I've seen the movie "We Were Soldiers" but not read the book. Could feel it from 3 different viewpoints; daughter, soldier, and wife. I cry everytime. It's just so horrible that people are dying senselessly and the same mistakes are being made, again.

I don't think that the author could be more right.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
The drain continues....

U.S. Military May Face Reservist Shortage

"The strain of fighting a longer, bloodier war in Iraq than U.S. commanders originally foresaw brings forth a question that most would have dismissed only a year ago: Is the military in danger of running out of reserve troops?

"At first glance the answer would appear to be a clear no. There are nearly 1.2 million men and women on the reserve rolls, and only about 70,000 are now in Iraq to supplement the regulars.

"But a deeper look inside the Army National Guard, Army Reserve and Marine Corps Reserve suggests a grimmer picture: At the current pace and size of American troop deployments to Iraq, the availability of suitable reserve combat troops could become a problem as early as next year.

"The National Guard says it has about 86,000 citizen soldiers available for future deployments to Iraq, fewer than it has sent there over the past two years. And it has used up virtually all of its most readily deployable combat brigades.

"In an indication of the concern about a thinning of its ranks, last month the National Guard tripled the re-enlistment bonuses offered to soldiers in Iraq who can fill critical skill shortages.

"Similarly, the Army Reserve has about 37,500 deployable soldiers left -- about 18 percent of its total troop strength."

More here:
http://www.nynewsday.com/news/nation...news-headlines
 
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