Military cuts put burden on Guard's citizen soldiers

  • Article by: MARK BRUNSWICK , Star Tribune
  • Updated: November 10, 2012 - 6:43 AM

Weekend and weakened warriors will be under greater scrutiny after 11 years of combat.

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jstanthrnbrNov. 9, 1210:56 PM

We have been out of Iraq for a year or better. We are drawing down in Afghanistan. Why does the media not paint an accurate picture? What other areas are we active in?

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mblaineNov. 9, 1211:26 PM

Our country's grotesquely bloated military budget should be slashed by 70%.

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erikj3Nov. 10, 1212:59 AM

Cut the military budget in half.

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viczee26Nov. 10, 12 6:19 AM

Good point Jstanthrnbr. The reporting here is a bit less than complete. For example, the writer talks about the Minnesota National Guard. He fails to mention that it is comprised of two components:The Army National Guard on which he bases the article and the Air National Guard made up of units in Duluth and Mpls/St. Paul and comprised of about 3,000 members. The air component, including the aircraft, has also been heavily deployed over these last few years, going back to Gulf War I (c.1991). Next time, do a little research please and give us the complete story.

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Willy53Nov. 10, 12 7:24 AM

There was a time when the Natioanl Guard was used for just that, guarding the United States from threats of national disaster on our own soil. When events like Sandy devasted parts of our country the National Guard was the first wave of mobilization to combat looting, offer rescue and provide medical relief and food. IN the last 2 1/2 decades that has changed. Their role now is an invasion and occupation force in foreign countries our Presidents feel must be subject to our control. This is an abomination of the intent of the National Guard as a domestic organization to be used in dire domestic catastrophes, not a foreign invasion force or substitue for the US Marines. One tragedy of this use of the Guard (rather than a draft) is that when disasters like Katrina hit, the Guard is entirely unprepared to deal with the scope of the problem, its equipement largely rusting and used up in the sands of Iraq and Afghanistan. Are we now going to be able to go back to the domestic use of the Guard to assist in the support of domestic needs? That would make all of us a little safer.

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texas_technomanNov. 10, 12 7:29 AM

The military budget has doubled since Bush II took office...I think we can afford to scale back and focus on the future of warfare...cyberwarfare, drones, special op's......let's do our nation building at home!

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jcinmnNov. 10, 12 7:48 AM

Willy53 "There was a time when the Natioanl Guard was used for just that, guarding the United States from threats of national disaster on our own soil. When events like Sandy devasted parts of our country the National Guard was the first wave of mobilization to combat looting, offer rescue and provide medical relief and food. IN the last 2 1/2 decades that has changed. Their role now is an invasion and occupation force in foreign countries our Presidents feel must be subject to our control. This is an abomination of the intent of the National Guard as a domestic organization to be used in dire domestic catastrophes, not a foreign invasion force or substitue for the US Marines. " Read "Drift" by Rachel Maddow for your answer. This set up was designed by Gen. Creighton Abrams who commanded US Forces in Vietnam. He wanted a system by which the President could not circumvent Congress by engaging in a war, getting bogged down, conscripting civilians into the military and avoiding Congressional oversight. The militia was designed by the framers of our constitution so that a regular army would not be needed. Thomas Jefferson abhorred the idea of a regular army because of the way Great Britain, France and other older countries used their armed forces against their own people.

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saturn122777Nov. 10, 12 7:50 AM

Willy53: You are 110% correct.

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gracekellyNov. 10, 12 7:58 AM

Our national guard should have NEVER been used as foreign army invaders. That is what the army, navy, and other special forces are for. With over 50% of our national discretionary budget spent on war, our Guard should stay home. We know that we will have floods, droughts, fires and tornadoes here in our state. That is what guard is for and that is what they should be used for.

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mobydick1Nov. 10, 12 8:09 AM

I was really impressed with the number or articulate articles in this comment section. It might also be prudent to have our military largely made up of people of all social/economic classes. It might discourage creating conflicts if more celebrated individuals were at risk.

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