Reserve Chief Supports Cut
Lt. Gen. James R. Helmly, chief of the Army Reserve, said he expects his 205,000-member force to be cut and that he supports some of the reduction. He refused to provide numbers, although a senior, defense official said the Army is looking at a reduction of 5,000 reservists between fiscal 2007 and fiscal 2011. In addition, the National Guard could drop by 17,000 in fiscal 2007, with more cuts later. Many state National Guard leaders oppose the cuts. Helmly agreed that it is possible to cut the force too much, but "we're a long way from doing that," he said. The cuts were recommended in a classified Program Decision Memorandum, which is the Defense Department vehicle that guides future budget submissions. Helmly said he was comfortable with the level proposed by the PDM.
Related stories... Reductions
Thin Green Line
(Let's see...they are using the Guard and Reserve more and more... The Army is stretched thin... "Yeah, I know a solution. Let's get rid of Guard and Reserve members. Yeah, that's the ticket...")
Army Enlistments, Re-enlistments Rebound
Army re-enlistments in fiscal 2005 were the highest in five years, said Army Secretary Francis J. Harvey Jan. 18. More than 69,500 soldiers re-enlisted between Oct. 1, 2004, and Sept. 30, 2005. The enlistment record also looks brighter than it has for years, with 11,522 recruits signed up by mid-January against a goal of 11,000. Nevertheless, the Army needs some 80,000 new recruits each year to balance its current strength of 492,000 active-duty personnel against losses. Last year, it missed that goal by about 6,600 troops, according to the Congressional Budget Office.
(guess the ones who ARE there already, like what they see, and want to stay in. So much for the 'decimated morale' theory...)
Great Grandmother Completes Deployment
A 73-year-old great grandmother has returned from a volunteer deployment to the Middle East. Mrs. Lena Haddix served the first six months in Kuwait, then went to Camp Liberty in Baghdad for six months as a supervisor at the 30,000-square-foot PX. "My proudest time was seeing the soldiers smile when they saw somebody from home," she said. "And some of them recognized me from home," she added. They called her "Mom," and made a point to tell her they were OK when they stopped into the exchange. What does she think of the troops over there? "They're doing their job. Their morale is good. They know they're there for a reason. They're willing, and want to get the job done." An exchange worker for more than 30 years, she's back at the Fort Sill, Okla., PX from where the odyssey began.
( I hope I am able to volunteer like this when I'm 73. How about the rest of you. What have YOU done...?)
I started this blog as a way of putting down on paper some of my military experiences from my career. Looking back over my posts from the last few months, there hasn't been a whole lot of 'military experience' posts. I want to post more more. But, in comparison, how can I post about things like my activation for the 1980 Miami Riots, or for the Pope's visit in 1987, or Hurricane Andrew in 1992, or my deployment to Bosnia in 2003, or any number of minor things that have happened during my military career, when Soldiers are fighting and dieing in Afghanistan and Iraq? My experiences pale greatly compared to theirs. Maybe I will anyway, for my grandkids, so they can know what I did during my career. Maybe I won't. Maybe I'll get a 'Memoir Kit' from the Veteran's History Project, and write it for Eleanor and whoever comes next. We'll see.