Scores of Ex-Soldiers May be Called up from Idaho, Utah

Scores of Ex-Soldiers May be Called up from Idaho, Utah

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BOISE, Idaho (AP) -- Sixty former soldiers from Idaho and Utah will be among the 5,600 the Army intends to call up from inactive service for duty in Iraq, officials said Thursday.

Truck drivers, mechanics, administrative and logistics specialists and combat engineers are among the most likely to be recalled, said Lt. Col. Kevin Arata of the Army's Human Resources Command in Alexandria, Va.

The people being recalled are members of the Individual Ready Reserve, a roster of about 111,000 discharged soldiers who have returned to civilian life.

Arata said each soldier's enlistment contract specifies the terms of their reserve obligation, but it could be as long as eight years.

The recall will include both enlisted personnel and officers, who are subject to recall as long as they hold a commission.

The first recall notices went out on July 6, said Lt. Col. Burt Masters, a public affairs officer with the Army Human Resources Command in St. Louis.

But not all 5,600 soldiers will be notified at once. The first group will include about 2,000 soldiers. They'll receive their notices during the next few weeks, Masters said. The rest will be phased in between August and December.

"The Army is still working this, it's a work in progress," Masters said. "We're not prepared to give out the names. Right now, we're just concerned about getting the soldiers mobilized."

Most of the recalled soldiers will be assigned to formal Army National Guard and Reserve units already slated for duty in Iraq.

The Idaho National Guard is sending 2,000 soldiers from the 116th Cavalry Brigade, which is currently training at Fort Bliss, Texas, and scheduled to deploy to Iraq later this fall.

Lt. Col. Tim Marsano said Thursday that the 116th was not aware that it would receive any soldiers from the Individual Ready Reserve.

About 30 soldiers from both Idaho and Utah could expect to be recalled, Masters said. A complete state-by-state breakdown will not be available for several weeks.

Recalled soldiers will be expected to report for training 30 days after receiving the notice to either Fort Benning, Ga., Fort Leonard Wood, Mo., Fort Jackson, S.C., or Fort Sill, Okla.

Masters said there could be additional recalls beyond the 5,600 soldiers needed through the end of the year.

"Based on what the leadership and the Secretary of Defense decides, yes, there could be more," he said.

(Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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