December 23, 2017 – Fort Russ News –
– Clippings and commentary by Tom Winter –
|Soldier back from Ukraine welcomed by family and flag. Photo from TulsaWorld photo gallery|
Time was, before the all-volunteer army, the National Guard was at home, and Guardsmen were “weekend warriors.” Since we ended the draft and went to the all-volunteer army (Nixon’s dirtiest trick, in my view), the Guard has served as a temp agency for the Armed Forces.
Where they get deployed is something their wives, children, neighbors might learn, as they “support our troops.”
Here is a headline from the Oklahoma City newspaper, The Oklahoman:
Oklahoma National Guard soldiers return home from Ukraine
Did you see it? “Training missions” and local news are a principle means of making warfare, our warfare, politically sustainable.
We learn of US troop deployment in different ways. There was the news of two US soldiers killed in Yemen, and we react: We have soldiers in Yemen? The official announcement — announcement, I emphasize, not a question, “should we deploy troops to Yemen?” — did not come until May 6, 2016, and it was published, not in the New York Times, but in The Guardian.
Here is a telling snippet:
“While the number of US personnel on the ground is limited, the US is also offering an array of assistance to partners in Yemen, including air-to-air refueling capabilities, surveillance, planning, maritime security and medical help.
“The US Navy also has several ships nearby, including an amphibious assault ship called the USS Boxer and two destroyers.”
Partners! Partners, we call them. Not bothering to mention such partners as water supply, electricity, starvation, or cholera. Planning is included. Was the starvation planned? The cholera?
USA Today published an announcement that we (“we”) would have military advisors in Ukraine in May of 2014.[USA Today] And this:
Since early March, President Barack Obama has approved more than $23 million in additional defensive security assistance to help the former Soviet republic maintain its borders and sovereignty in the face of provocative moves by Russian military forces on Ukraine’s eastern border and violence fomented by pro-Russian militants inside Ukraine.
Earlier this week, Obama announced he had approved $5 million in body armor, night vision goggles and additional communications equipment for the Ukrainian military.
This was generally ignored. But if it is to counter “violence fomented by pro-Russian militants,” it must be okay. Turn the page.