The strain of fighting a longer, bloodier war in Iraq than US commanders originally foresaw brings forth a question that most would have dismissed only a year ago: Is the military in danger of running out of reserve troops? \nAt first glance, there are nearly 1.2 million men and women on the reserve rolls, and only about 70,000 are now in Iraq to supplement the regulars. But a deeper look inside the Army National Guard, Army Reserve and Marine Corps Reserve suggests a grimmer picture: At the current pace and size of American troop deployments to Iraq, the availability of suitable reserve combat troops could become a problem as early as next year. \nThe National Guard says it has about 86,000 citizen soldiers available for future deployments to Iraq, fewer than it has sent there over the past two years. And it has used up virtually all of its most readily deployable combat brigades. \nIn an indication of the concern about a thinning of its ranks, last month the National Guard tripled the re-enlistment bonuses offered to soldiers in Iraq who can fill critical skill shortages. The Army Reserve has about 37,500 deployable soldiers left -- 18 percent of its total troop strength. \nThe Marine Corps Reserve appears to be in a comparable position, because most of its 40,000 troops have been mobilized at least once already. Both the Army and the Marines are soliciting reservists to volunteer for duty in Iraq. \n"The reserves are pretty well shot" after the Pentagon makes the next troop rotation, starting this summer, said Robert Goldich, a defense analyst. \nOf the National Guard's 15 best-trained, best-equipped and most ready-to-deploy combat brigades, all but one are either in Iraq now, have demobilized after returning from a one-year tour there or have been alerted for duty this year and next. \nThe exception is the South Carolina National Guard's 218th Infantry Brigade, which has had not been deployed to Iraq as a full brigade because smaller groups of its soldiers have been mobilized periodically for homeland defense and other missions abroad. \nThe Army Reserve, with about 205,000 citizen soldiers on its rolls for support rather than combat duty, has been so heavily used since the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks that, for practical purposes, it has only about 37,500 troops available to perform the kinds of missions required in Iraq. \nThe Army Reserve chief, Lieutenant General James Helmly, recently advised other Army leaders that his citizen militia is in "grave danger" of being unable to meet all its operational responsibilities, saying the Reserve is "rapidly degenerating into a broken force."
POINT-BLANK RANGE: Reporters and camera people from several outlets say police officers in Minneapolis had fired tear gas and rubber bullets directly at them Multiple journalists on the ground in Minnesota said they were teargassed and subject to other attacks by police on Saturday evening, a day after the widely condemned arrest of a CNN reporter live on air. Los Angeles Times journalist Molly Hennessy-Fiske, who was reporting outside the Fifth Precinct in Minneapolis, said she was with a group of about a dozen journalists when the Minnesota State Patrol “fired tear gas canisters on us at point blank range.” “I was saying: ‘Where do we go?’ They did not tell us where to go. They didn’t direct us. They just fired on us,” she said
For nearly a decade, the UN Security Council has been frequently paralyzed by Russia’s obstinacy over the Syrian crisis. Today, however, it is the US-China rivalry that has infected a growing array of issues, according to officials and diplomats. As recently as 2017, an understanding between Washington and Beijing allowed the UN on three occasions — involving separate sets of economic sanctions — to project international unity in the face of the North Korean nuclear threat. Three years later, the COVID-19 pandemic has seen a ferocious competition erupt between the UN’s two main contributors, prompting UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on May
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INDIA Pride to be preserved The nation would not let its “pride be hurt” in its latest border flare-ups with China, but is determined to settle the dispute through talks, Minister of Defense Rajnath Singh said in a television interview late on Saturday. “Situations arise with China. It has happened before,” Singh said, adding that the government was striving to make sure “tension does not escalate.” The government has turned down US President Donald Trump’s offer to mediate, he said. IRAN Speaker says talks futile Newly elected Parliament Speaker Mohammad-Bagher Ghalibaf yesterday said that any negotiations with the US would be “futile.” The nation’s