Posted: 3/14/2001 1:27:43 PM EDT
The Salt Lake Tribune -- Militia's Bullet Offer Is Rejected
Militia's Bullet Offer Is Rejected
Wednesday, March 14, 2001
BY RUBY L. BAILEY
KNIGHT RIDDER NEWS SERVICE
DETROIT -- The U.S. Army had been telling its nonfighting
troops to pretend their guns were loaded for nearly a month
when Nick Stoner got wind of the fact that the government had
run out of money for training ammunition.
What Uncle Sam calls a short-term supply glitch, Stoner,
the executive director of the Michigan Militia Inc., maintains
is a national security crisis. So the 30-member group started
Operation Help a Brother Out, an ammunition fund-raiser for
the U.S. military.
Stoner is taking cash or bullets -- 9 mm, 124-grain,
full-metal jacket only -- and plans to send all the group can
gather to the Pentagon. So far, members have raised $200,
mainly through their Web site, www.michiganmilitia.com.
Stoner's group branched off last year from the estimated
12,000-member Michigan Militia to concentrate on property
ownership issues. Militias typically support gun and property
rights and reject government authority. The Michigan Militia
was formed in 1994 by Norm Olson, a preacher and gun dealer
U.S. military leaders "were surprised to say the least,"
said Stoner, 33, when he contacted the Pentagon. "They haven't
been able to give us an address to send it to."
But even if an address were available, the Army can't
accept the group's donation. The Army is required to purchase
ammunition from federal suppliers only and cannot accept
monetary donations, said spokesman Maj. Tom Artis.
Artis said he applauds the group's patriotism, but "it's
not like we can just go to Wal-Mart. And it's not like you can
bring up a wheelbarrow full of cash and we can accept it."
Stoner said the military uses the 9 mm ammunition with the
Beretta pistol, a weapon used by officers and some enlisted
The Army has been low on ammunition since about January,
with no word on when it will end. The ammunition stockpiled
for combat remains intact, according to Army officials. Artis
declined to say what types of weapons and training have been
Reduced funding in last year's military budget is the
likely cause of the ammunition shortage, said H. Sterling
Burnett, senior analyst for the National Center for Policy
Analysis, a political think tank in Dallas. In 1999, the armed
forces had a $3.5 billion shortfall for ammunition purchases
"When the Army says they're temporarily out of bullets,
you've got some serious problems," said Burnett. "Supply
glitch or not, it sounds very bad when they're telling troops
they can't practice."
In his recent address to a joint session of Congress,
President Bush proposed increasing the Defense Department
budget by $13 billion to $310 billion.
Stoner said the militia will continue Operation Help a
Brother Out until training troops are once again firing live
rounds of ammunition.
"And we'll get them the ammo one way or another," he said.
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I wonder if the US Army General Staff can just place a call to thier friends in China and just have em' tack on a few thousand cases of berdan-primed steel-case laqured-finished surplus ammo to thier Black beret order.
Just a thought...
So that is why the USS Cole coudn't fight off the Arab rowboat full of explosives. No ammo.
And the only way the US navy can sink boats now is by ramming them.
Maybr they ought to have an intoduction to reloading class.They have plenty of brass,powder, pulled bullets.
This story is just propaganda to help create public support for more defense spending.
If you look at all the reports about soldiers being on welfare, wage gaps, and so on, you find out that most of it is hot air. There are/were less than 1,000 active duty soldiers receiving welfare benefits, all of whom were low-rank individuals living on base with 2 or more children.
We do not need to keep spending $350 Billion to support the military industrial complex. That figure could be cut by 2/3 and we would still be a fantastic military power in the world. And, as a bonus, we wouldn't have the rest of the world so pissed off about our blatant imperialist activities.
I think more defense spending is good, but it should give them a chance to brush up on the 'ole bayonet skills. Only 2 types of bayonet fighters you know.