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Media Hoax on Humvee Armor

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posted on Dec, 19 2004 @ 03:36 PM
Special Defence Department Briefing

Subject: Up-armoring tactical wheeled vehicles.

Presenter: : Major General Stephen Speakes, U.S. Army G-8, Force Development; Brigadier General (P) Jeffrey Sorenson, Deputy for Acquisition Systems Management to the Assistant Secretary of the Army for Acquisition, Logistics, and Technology; Colonel John Rooney, Chief of Staff, Army Test and Development Command Wednesday, December 15, 2004 8:03 a.m. EST

Q Thank you. I was wondering if we should be thinking about the difference between soldiers who are going to be headed into Iraq and Soldiers who are already there. A lot of the concerns about who did and didn't have were from soldiers who were going in, and I didn't -- I personally didn't get a sense of what the people who are already there are using and what their needs and gaps are.

GEN. SPEAKES: Very, very good question. The first point is that you'll recollect that one of the questions was the status of the 278 ACR; in other words, the date that we had the visit by the secretary of Defense, we had a question about their up-armoring status. When the question was asked, 20 vehicles remained to be up-armored at that point. We completed those 20 vehicles in the next day. And so over 800 vehicles from the 278 ACR were up-armored, and they are a part now of their total force that is operating up in Iraq.

Q When you say they're 100 percent up-armored, does that mean 100 percent of their requirement or 100 percent of their vehicles?

GEN. SPEAKES: Yes, what we did is there was a total of 804 vehicles that were identified as part of our up-armoring strategy. That's the wheeled vehicles that they brought north with them or drew when they got up in country. And so at this point the vehicles that they're operating, that they're driving, are all up-armored. There were a few vehicles that were put on heavy equipment transporters and moved up. The example would be, for example, the shop van, which is a large, essentially static vehicle. And it was taken up by a truck and dropped in position, but it was not operated on the way up there. So at this point, if you're in Kuwait and you're headed north up into Iraq, General Schoomaker's guidance is real clear: you're not going north of the berm, which means north of the border, in a non-up- armored vehicle, and that's our requirement. And so what you now have is an accountability process during the reception, staging and onward movement where every vehicle's accounted for and it gets up-armored or it doesn't go north.

Q On the 278th, can you repeat this? At the time the question was asked, the planted question, the unit had 784 of its 804 vehicles armored?

GEN. SPEAKES: Here is the overall solution that you see. And what we've had to do is -- the theater had to take care of 830 total vehicles. So this shows you the calculus that was used. Up north in Iraq, they drew 119 up-armored humvees from what we call stay-behind equipment. That is equipment from a force that was already up there. We went ahead and applied 38 add-on armor kits to piece of equipment they deployed over on a ship. They also had down in Kuwait 214 stay- behind equipment pieces that were add-on armor kits. And then over here they had 459 pieces of equipment that were given level-three protection. And so when you put all this together, that comes up with 830.

Q If he hadn't asked that question, would the up-armoring have been accomplished within 24 hours?

GEN. SPEAKES: Yes. This was already an existing program. Remember that when I began this presentation we talked about General Schoomaker in his testimony in front of the HASC in November -- made it real clear. He said all vehicles operating north of the berm will be up-armored, and what that meant in common-sense language is you don't leave Kuwait without either an up-armor or an add-on armor solution. And we understood that, and most importantly the theater did. And so we were in constant dialogue, ensuring that we provided everything that was required to make this happen. And this didn't happen just for the 278th. In other words, the 256th, which was the Army Guard brigade directly in front of it, had the same identical solution; and although different numbers of vehicles, approximately the same solution in terms of percentage of fill.

The issue of the "planted" question has been covered and agreed upon elsewhere in other threads, theres really no question the reporter prompted the soldier to ask his question.

The briefing quoted above aptly shows that the question was not warranted in relation to the particular unit in question which had a near 100% up armor of its wheeled vehicles prior to going north out of Kuwait.

Today almost two weeks later the media is still running wth this story that as you can see and read from the information provided above is basically and without question false in regards to the unit in question.

I have yet to see one story on the MSM correcting the allegation as originally asked and presented.

Now we have senators and media darlings calling for Rumsfelds resignation over an issue that is found to not really be an issue at all.

Politics of the media are surely shining through on this story.


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