Thursday, July 11, 2013

National Guard Furloughs?

Serving Proudly for 370 Years

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In this story, we learn that National Guard units will be placing their troops on furlough "one day a week" and thus have eight hours less each week to do their jobs.

According to LTC Chuck Anthony
"... it's going to be a terrible hardship for those soldiers, airmen and their families ... and may have a negative impact on our readiness and our ability to respond."

[ARNG Photo]
This assessment comes as quite a surprise since the traditional role of the National Guard has been in a "part time" role.  In years past, they were referred to as "Weekend Warriors", serving two weekend days per month, and on Active Duty status two weeks in each month.  Their traditional role, in the absence of war, has been for disaster relief at the state and local level.

So, given that there is no war to fight, and the Active Duty Components are drawing down, it makes perfect sense to draw down the National Guard to their "Weekend Warrior" status.

Now, these comments are not meant to demean the National Guard in any way.  They have served bravely and honorably in war zones; they have fought, been maimed, and have been killed in action along with their Active Duty Component comrades. Their service in the role of disaster relief has been extraordinary.

But, when they signed on as National Guard vs Active Duty Components, it was with full knowledge and intent that they were part-timers, and in the absence of being activated for war deployments, they would return to "part-time" status.


Our background includes creating and directing a national training program for the National Guard in which we trained more than 100,000 personnel in more than 1,000 units ranging in size from Company to Division [and Corps when augmenting Active Components].  So, we're very familiar with the National Guard issues.