Friday, February 01, 2008

What a Surprise!

The New York Times published an Associated Press news story today with this lede paragraph: “The United States military is not prepared for a catastrophic attack on the country, and National Guard forces do not have the equipment or training they need for the job, according to a new report.” I am shocked...SHOCKED! The AP story when on to say, “The study of the military’s readiness to respond to a chemical, biological or nuclear weapons attack found ‘an appalling gap that places the nation and its citizens at greater risk’.” The Commission of the National Guard and Reserves released the study yesterday. This commission is charged by Congress to recommend changes in law and policy concerning those forces. Because of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, the commission panel reported that “we don’t have the forces we need (meaning the US Military) nor do we have a reasonable alternative (meaning the National Guard) to relying heavily on our Reserves to supplement the active-duty forces, the report said. The study said the nation’s governors should be given the authority to direct active-duty troops responding to emergencies in their states. That recommendation, when it first came to light last year, was shot down by the military and immediately rejected by Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates. The Commission’s chairman, Retired Marine Corps general Arnold L. Punaro, said "I believe we’re going to wear him (Gates) down.” And while everyone is dicking around protecting their fiefdoms and power bases, what happens when another natural disaster happens? Or if God forbid the US is attacked (again) by President Bush’s buddies from Saudi Arabia? Not to worry. John McCain no doubt has a plan for keeping our troops in Afghanistan and Iraq while arming all 70-year-old vets with press releases about their past days of glory to hand out to disaster victims and/or potential enemies. And we can count on Homeland Security’s Michael Chertoff to have our back.


Barry Schwartz said...

word on the street has it that we are going to be sacked by waves of barbarians

Todd Dugdale said...

It's obvious that Bush could not have waged his Afghan/Iraqi campaigns without turning the "Home Guard" into an expeditionary force. If this is what the Guard was intended to be, why didn't Bush serve in Vietnam? Because it was the way for the politically-connected to avoid combat, as everyone knows.

The states have completely lost control of their Guard units, establishing a dangerous precedent in an understanding set in the U.S.-Mexican War. Instead, the Guard has become just another Reserve.