More Reserves called up; Rumsfeld meets congressional defense leaders
Thursday, September 27th 2001, 12:00 am
News On 6
WASHINGTON (AP) _ U.S. military members injured or killed in the Sept. 11 attacks will receive Purple Heart medals, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld said Thursday.
Civilian Defense Department workers killed or injured in the attacks will get a new kind of medal: The Secretary of Defense Medal for the Defense of Freedom, Rumsfeld said.
Purple Heart medals have traditionally been given to soldiers wounded or killed during wartime. Thursday's action marks the first time the medals have been given for an incident on American soil since World War II, Rumsfeld said.
``These assaults have brought the battlefield home to us,'' Rumsfeld said.
On Wednesday, the Pentagon called up more than 600 additional military reservists for the campaign against terrorism. Those tapped included Seabees and other Naval reservists as well as security forces with an Air Force Special Operations unit in Florida.
The latest request for 635 reservists brought to about 15,600 the number and Reserve and National Guard members called to active duty, the Pentagon said.
Included were Naval Inshore Boat Unit 11 from Everett, Wash., and Inshore Boat Unit 17 from San Diego, Calif.; Naval Construction Battalion 5 from Fort Worth, Texas, and Construction Battalion 133 from Gulfport, Miss., the announcement said.
The call-up also included 66 members of the Air Force's 919 Special Operations Wing Security Forces from Niceville, Fla.
They join Reserve and National Guard members called under a partial mobilization order President Bush signed after the Sept. 11 attacks in New York and Washington. Bush authorized the Pentagon to call as many as 50,000 to active duty.
Administration officials have said that U.S. special operations forces were expected to play a role, albeit a secret one, in the expected operations against terrorists who carried out the attacks. The term refers to clandestine fighters who operate behind enemy lines in roles that include targeting, sabotage, even attack missions.
Rumsfeld wrote in an opinion piece in Thursday's editions of The New York Times that the war against terrorism is as much a battle over money as between military forces.
``This war will not necessarily be one in which we pore over military targets and mass forces to seize those targets,'' he wrote. ``Instead, military force will likely be one of many tools we use to stop individuals, groups and countries that engage in terrorism.''
He said one U.S. response may be to fire cruise missiles into military targets ``somewhere in the world.'' But the United States is just as likely to focus on tracking investments moving through offshore banking centers.
``The uniforms of this conflict will be bankers' pinstripes and programmers' grunge just as assuredly as desert camouflage,'' he wrote.
The Pentagon also announced that military bases have been allowed to prohibit civilian blood drives. The move is meant to safeguard the military's blood programs, said Dr. J. Jarrett Clinton, a top Pentagon health official.
In Islamabad, U.S. and Pakistani officials ended two days of talks in ``complete unanimity'' on military preparations for combating Osama bin Laden's terrorist network in Afghanistan, a Pakistani general said.
Details of the agreement were not announced, but Gen. Rashid Qureshi, spokesman for Pakistan's president, Pervez Musharraf, said there was ``no difference of opinion between Pakistan and America on the issue of combating terrorism.'' Pakistan, however, opposes any U.S. or other effort to bolster the northern alliance of opposition Afghan groups, which has been fighting the ruling Taliban that harbors bin Laden.
Pakistani officials said both sides had agreed to minimize the use of ground forces in any strike in Afghanistan.
Two U.S. government officials, speaking on condition of anonymity, said Pakistan's report of a broad accord with the U.S. military was essentially correct. They would not elaborate.
The U.S. delegation was led by Air Force Brig. Gen. Kevin Chilton, director of strategic planning for the Near East and South Asia for the Joint Staff.
Rumsfeld met Wednesday with congressional leaders on how to pay for the new war on terror.
``We must recognize that right here at home we are confronted with adversaries,'' Sen. John Warner of Virginia, top Republican on the Senate Armed Services Committee, said after the session at the Pentagon.