This past Sunday’s New York Times carried a front page article detailing President Bush’s plan for going to war with Iraq. The plan calls for massing 200,000 to 250,000 troops for attack by air, land and sea. The air campaign would be less than the 43 days of the first Gulf War. But in the opening hours of the air campaign, Navy and Air Force jets, including B-2 bombers carrying 16 one-ton satellite-guided bombs and B-1 bombers carrying 24 of the same weapons, would attack a range of targets. Only nine percent of the weapons dropped in the Gulf War were precision-guided; this time it is expected to be in excess of 60 percent.
Another area that could witness an increase, compared to the first Gulf War, is the number of reserves that might be called up for active duty. Pentagon officials anticipate a mobilization of the National Guard and Reserves equal to or larger than the 265,000 called to active duty in the first Gulf War. Most of these troops are expected to be deployed in the United States!
This is how The Times quietly snuck in this bombshell:
“The move to war has already raised concerns of terrorist reprisals in the United States, and senior Pentagon officials say they anticipate a mobilization of the National Guard and Reserves equal to or larger than the 265,000 called to active duty in the first Gulf War.