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procedures are almost inevitable in wartime, the modifications prompted by the war on

terrorism and defense transformation should take place within the overall context of the

Total Force Policy and not under some new and untested defense planning paradigm.

Other compelling reasons exist for the National Guard to maintain its position in

the nation’s first line of defense. The National Guard is a cost effective force multiplier;

three or four citizen-soldiers cost the same as a single active duty member. By reducing

its reliance on the Guard and Reserves, the Department of Defense will require more

resources, not less. The Guard’s presence in America’s local communities makes it the

ideal, military first responder for homeland security. The Guard’s inherent flexibility

allows it to perform as either a homeland security or homeland defense force while

providing military assistance to civil authorities. A mobilized National Guard acting as a

federal reserve force facilitates rather than limits military operations. A strong National

Guard guarantees the future strength of American democracy, the involvement of the

citizenry in the common defense, and public support for the war on terrorism.

Since the early 1970s, the Total Force Policy has allowed the nation to meet its

defense requirements by utilizing an all-volunteer military maintained at an acceptable

cost to taxpayers. For the duration of the war on terrorism, the National Guard must be

treated as an equal partner in the common defense, properly equipped, appropriately

trained, and prepared to fight overseas or to defend American soil in conjunction with

active duty forces. Only in this way can the nation best guarantee its security in the

current struggle and for the remainder of the twenty-first century.

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