Thursday, August 11, 2005

Like Pushing Water Uphill

Georgia's Army National Guard, the 48th, has been "in country" now for a while and our local rag, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, has been reporting on our state guardsmen.

Apparently the opportunity to provide us with an article filled with information relevant to the 'plight' of our neighbors and loved ones serving in the guard was used to further the paper's agenda.

Instead of giving us more details about life in the 48th, the AJC chose to take potshots at the military and the administration. Here was my quickly written reply to their article.

The Humvee was designed as the replacement for the classic jeep. It was not designed to be a armored personnel carrier. It was meant to be a light vehicle for reconnaissance and transport.

The insurgents target the Humvees because they are lightly armored.

By adding increased armor, you reduce the agility of the vehicle. Not to mention that there is a limit to how much armor you can add on to the Humvee frame before the vehicle becomes useless due to lack of maneuverability. Unfortunately, the media has used the military's attempt to find the balance between armor and maneuverability on this 'light vehicle' to further it's own agenda.

All in all this was a balanced article except for the jibe thrown at Rumsfield for riding in a Rhino. He's a high-value target and the military was right to put him in a more protected vehicle. One designed for something closer to that purpose. I know what the AJC's reporting of an incident, had it occurred, with Rumsfield traveling in a Hummer and getting blown up by an IED would have been like.

Mixed in with some nice factual reporting about our 48th, I guess the point of the article is that 'we' should have waited before going into Iraq until all of our weapon and transport systems were 'perfected' and that our 'leadership' won't ride in the Hummer. How about more reporting on the 48th please and less space promoting your agenda and using the article to take potshots at the administration.

I'm shocked that there was no mention of the ratio of the 48th's level 1 armored Hummers to non-armored. And do our guys go out on patrol in the unarmored hummers, or are they typically being used inside the bases or in desert recon as opposed to city fighting and patrolling?

That would have made for a much better article.

Wish I had the time to more eloquently put my thoughts together this morning, but why should I when apparently our well equipped media won't take the time either?

~~~~~~~~~~ UPDATE ~~~~~~~~~~
Shortening my comment to the article up and taking out any blatant attack at the paper, they approved the following comment...

Gee, How many of our 48th’s hummers are level 1 armored and of those that aren’t, what are they used for?

And did anyone ask the defense dept why Mr. Rumsfield was placed in a Rhino as opposed to the Humvee? What was the explanation?

How much protection do you think is adequate? Surely that lightly armored amphibious assualt vehicle is better armored than the Humvee. Yet, it too didn’t survive an IED.

But they seem to be approving anything critical of the war effort or the administration. Par for the course around here...