National Guard: stretched to a breaking point

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posted on Sep, 1 2005 @ 11:10 PM
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Originally posted by Zaphod58
The states that have National Guard units deployed to Iraq have on average 60% of their units STILL in state. How exactly do you expect them to get to the places they need to be in no time flat? Boston Whaler? National Guard units don't have things like LCACs and Amphibious vehicles to use during times of flooding. Would you rather have helicopters flying around rescuing people, or ferrying troops around? Besides which a UH60 Blackhawk carries 13 soldiers. You would need a lot of them to get any number of troops on the ground in significant numbers to defend themselves from the animals that are shooting at people trying to rescue them.


Nonesense.....They are BUSING people from the DOME. Not all of NO is inaccessible by road. The failure of people to recognize that hides the absurdity of this situation. Moreover, the notion that a FEW snipers could keep at bay the might of the guard and US military is simply ridiculous. THESE PEOPLE ARE TRAINED FOR WAR. Who are the snippers but deranged teenage miscreants. Moreover, the longer people go without food, water, and shelter, the more likely that they will become hostile in order to survive. This shouldn't be a surprise. At a minimum, why wasn't food and water drop-shipped into key locations- particularly those locations where government officials were directing people to aggregate?

I remain utterly flabbergasted that so many are willing to give a pass on the incompetency that defines this relief effort. This isn't about politics, this is about vacuous leadership. Even Scarborough and other presumed administration supporters have the decency to recognize the lack of effort as unacceptable crap.




posted on Sep, 1 2005 @ 11:11 PM
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Just wondering ?, if you have anything to add to the discussion.

Dallas



posted on Sep, 1 2005 @ 11:16 PM
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What do you want Loam? Do you want them out rescuing your family members, or do you want them in the streets protecting the shops from looters? Even IF they had 100% of the NG troops there, they wouldn't ALL be deployed. You have a large number of support troops that stay behind to handle coordinting efforts between organizations, and where to send troops, and other things along those lines. You're either going to have the police and NG out rescuing where they can do the most good, or you're gonna have them patrolling the streets.



posted on Sep, 1 2005 @ 11:24 PM
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FIRST of all, they are NOT "snipers". A Sniper is a highly trained person who goes out to eliminate a threat. These are idiots with guns who are spraying bullets all over the sky, shooting at rescuers. You want the military to respond? You DO know how they are trained to respond right? It's called "overwhelming firepower". A person shoots at them, they shoot back with every gun they have until the shooting stops. You REALLY want that in the middle of a relief effort Loam? Or maybe you'd rather them keep pulling people up in the helicopter while they're being shot at, and have god knows how many people killed by an idiot with an AK? No matter what they do some people will find fault with it.



posted on Sep, 1 2005 @ 11:25 PM
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Originally posted by Zaphod58
What do you want Loam? Do you want them out rescuing your family members, or do you want them in the streets protecting the shops from looters? Even IF they had 100% of the NG troops there, they wouldn't ALL be deployed. You have a large number of support troops that stay behind to handle coordinting efforts between organizations, and where to send troops, and other things along those lines. You're either going to have the police and NG out rescuing where they can do the most good, or you're gonna have them patrolling the streets.


I could care less about the looting! I have been a law abiding citizen my entire life, but I can emphatically state that if it meant my survival and that of my family, I would trash the local grocery store for the chance to continue to live. Rescue should be the number one priority. The fact that they are using resources to arrest people for steeling pampers and food is an obscenity beyond belief.



posted on Sep, 1 2005 @ 11:36 PM
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And what about the people that are shooting at the rescuers? Or when people start to shoot other looters because they have something that they need? Yeah, let's rescue everyone and totally ignore the looting going on, and let it become total anarchy, and let everyone do what they want, no matter what it is.



posted on Sep, 1 2005 @ 11:38 PM
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Originally posted by Zaphod58
FIRST of all, they are NOT "snipers". A Sniper is a highly trained person who goes out to eliminate a threat. These are idiots with guns who are spraying bullets all over the sky, shooting at rescuers. You want the military to respond? You DO know how they are trained to respond right? It's called "overwhelming firepower". A person shoots at them, they shoot back with every gun they have until the shooting stops. You REALLY want that in the middle of a relief effort Loam? Or maybe you'd rather them keep pulling people up in the helicopter while they're being shot at, and have god knows how many people killed by an idiot with an AK? No matter what they do some people will find fault with it.


(I choose to ignore the semantic game....I think I have made myself quite clear on who these miscreants are...)

There is noting perfect about this situation. I am neither naive, nor unrealistically "soft". YES, I say shoot back at the ones shooting. This isn't brain surgery. Otherwise, the alternative choice we have made is to consent to the deaths of possibly hundreds or thousands more. I clearly see the lesser of the two evils here. Why can't you?

Moreover, to suggest that a trained guard and US military is incapable of restraint beyond those parameters above has far more disturbing implications. Even if an "idiot with an AK" should do as you describe, that becomes a criminal matter and hardly a justification for the current policy of inaction.



posted on Sep, 1 2005 @ 11:41 PM
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Originally posted by Zaphod58
Yeah, let's rescue everyone and totally ignore the looting going on, and let it become total anarchy, and let everyone do what they want, no matter what it is.


And what is happening now is different how??? RESCUE and EVACUATE the populous.....plain and simple!


[edit on 1-9-2005 by loam]



posted on Sep, 2 2005 @ 04:05 AM
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Here are some interesting Articles regarding this topic:



Ventura criticizes use of National Guard in Iraq

Former Gov. Jesse Ventura, who during his time in office diligently avoided commenting on military decisions, joined the fray over the war in Iraq on Tuesday.

"Now that I'm a civilian, I'm here to speak out that I think the current use of the National Guard is wrong," Ventura said Tuesday.

Emphasizing that he is an independent, not a Republican or Democrat, Ventura said the National Guard was designed to protect the homeland, not fight overseas.

"They are designed to protect us here in the United States of America and in our homeland - not to be occupying nations halfway around the world," Ventura said. "And that is not the role of the National Guard. And in many cases, many of these men are doing things they were never trained to do, which is dangerous for them and dangerous for the war itself."

news.minnesota.publicradio.org...



Iraq effect shakes National Guard

Tours of duty get longer and riskier, prompting concern about retention and recruitment.

Around the country, other reservists, National Guard members, and their families are also rethinking their commitment to the military as their duties as "weekend warriors" have morphed into full-time jobs that have become increasingly risky.

As a result, military leaders worry about how they'll recruit and retain the next generation of part-time soldiers who are increasingly being called upon to fight the war on terror and man peacekeeping commitments from Iraq to Bosnia. More than 174,000 reservists and National Guardsman are currently on active duty and 34 of them have been killed while serving in Iraq.

www.csmonitor.com...


Endangering the National Guard

The real scandal about Bush and the National Guard is the damage he is wreaking on the military reserves required to keep America safe at home.

Speaker after speaker at the conference sponsored by the Association of the United States Army, the Center for American Progress and the Center for Peace and Security Studies described the current situation in the Guard and Reserve. The news was not good. In what John Kerry has called a "back-door draft," thousands of Guard and Reserve soldiers are being barred from leaving the supposedly "all volunteer" force when their voluntary service periods are over. Men and women who joined understanding they would be part-time warriors are deploying to combat as much as or more than their active-duty counterparts. A host of elected leaders, senior military officers, government officials and defense policy experts mostly painted a dismal picture of military reserves pushed to the breaking point because of the war in Iraq, and because of the Bush administration’s stubborn refusal to increase the size of the active-duty force.

www.alternet.org...


Destroying the National Guard

One of the likely effects of the disastrous war in Iraq will be the destruction of an old American institution, the National Guard. Desperate for troops as the situation in Iraq deteriorates, Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld is using the National Guard in a mission for which it was never intended: carrying on a "war of choice" halfway around the world. Most Guardsmen enlisted expecting to help their neighbors in natural disasters, or perhaps maintain order locally in the event of rioting. They never signed up for Vietnam II.

Yes, the Guard was mobilized and deployed overseas in both World Wars, but those were true national wars, in which the American people were all involved one way or another. Cabinet wars, as they used to be called, are something altogether different. As Frederick the Great said, cabinet wars must be waged in such a manner that the people do not know they are going on.

www.antiwar.com...


Demands of wars since 9/11 strain National Guard's efforts

The equipment the Guard needs to help in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina is in shorter supply because the gear is in use in combat zones, is battle-damaged, or has been loaned to cover gaps in other units, the officials said. The National Guard Bureau estimates that its nationwide equipment availability rate is 35 percent, about half the normal level, according to Pentagon statistics.

''In the four years since 9/11 that we have been at war, equipment has been beaten up, blown up, or simply left behind," said John Goheen of the National Guard Association of the United States. ''States have had to borrow equipment and make do with a lot less equipment. We are short literally thousands of Humvees."

Meanwhile, in Louisiana and Mississippi, the states hit hardest by the hurricane, up to 40 percent of their National Guard troops are on active duty in Iraq. As a result, Guard commanders responding to the storm's havoc have been forced to look further afield for military police and other National Guard units and equipment from states as far away as Maryland, stealing precious time from the relief efforts.

Guard commanders, however, insist that their national network of state militias -- the only US forces authorized to enforce the law when local authorities are overwhelmed -- has more than enough forces to respond to the devastation caused by Katrina, one of the worst natural disasters in US history. Of the estimated 400,000 members of the National Guard, about 175,000 have been called to active duty to support the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the commanders said. That leaves plenty of manpower nationwide to respond to the chaos and misery along the Gulf Coast

Boston Globe


State Force to Leave on Schedule, But No Special Rotations Planned

BAGHDAD, Sept. 1 -- The 3,700 Louisiana National Guard members in Iraq will begin heading home within about a week as part of normal troop rotations, but there are no mass Guard movements back to the United States planned to aid hurricane relief, U.S. military officials in Baghdad said Thursday.

"Everyone we have here, and every piece of equipment we have here, is needed here," said Maj. Gen. Rick Lynch, senior spokesman for U.S. forces in Iraq.

With thousands of National Guard troops serving tours in Iraq and Afghanistan and the Guard retaining fewer members at home, officials in the United States have acknowledged that the scale of the destruction along the Gulf Coast is stretching their stateside manpower. Wisconsin agreed Wednesday to send 500 Guard troops to Louisiana to help make up for the shortfall.

www.washingtonpost.com...


So, as we can read from this articles, the problem of National Guard is not new in this "War on Terrorism" - the NG has been stretching to the point of breaking since 9-11 and Guardsmen are serving tours of duty in Iraq as if they were in the US Army. I Thought National Guard (the word National) is there to protect and to help the NATION - not to fight wars overseas. And in times like this - Natural Disasters - the full blow to the NG is shown in full effect. Manpower, Equipment needed, and it's not around but in Combat Zones in and around Middle East. If you ask Bush why, he will say that the Guardsmen are protecting the American people there - but who is going to protect the American people in their own country when disasters such as this one strike? What if another Hurricane is forming right now? Who's gonna come then?



posted on Sep, 2 2005 @ 04:09 AM
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The National Guard and reserves are just that. Reserves for the Active Duty. The NG and Reserve forces are taking over a lot of missions for the AD guys. Many tanker wings are now either NG or Reserves, even quite a few of the bomber units are NG now. While their primary mission is National relief, they ARE still part of the military and it's up to the Pentagon where they are most needed.



posted on Sep, 2 2005 @ 04:14 AM
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Originally posted by Zaphod58
While their primary mission is National relief, they ARE still part of the military and it's up to the Pentagon where they are most needed.

EXACTLY!

It's all up to Pentagon - and they are to blame for the current lack of manpower on the ground at the Katrina Disaster.



posted on Sep, 2 2005 @ 04:30 AM
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The National Guard levels in deployed states are 60+%. The lack of troops on the ground has a lot to do with the fact that many troops probably evacuated, or are unable to get back to where they need to be. The LA Guard has IIRC 3000 troops deployed out of 11000.





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