Homeland Security and the Reserves: Threat, Mission, and Force Structure Issues [September 10, 2002]   [open pdf - 56KB]

From the Summary: "Since the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, many have suggested expanding the use of the reserves, particularly the National Guard, for homeland security. [...] Over the past two decades, the reserves have shifted much of their peacetime effort from training for wartime tasks to participating in current active force missions. Denying the active forces access to these reserve resources, due to a restructuring of reserves toward homeland security missions, most likely would reduce the readiness of U.S. forces, at least in the near term. [...] At present, some reservists can be enticed to join or remain in the reserves by, among other incentives, real-world missions which are part of real overseas contingencies. On the other hand, homeland security duty could attract some recruits not drawn to foreign travel, but energized by participating in direct defense of American soil. [...] Adequate homeland security may not need forces of the size of the entire Army National Guard (360,000 personnel), let alone contributions from the other reserve components. [...] In coping with such a nation-state, whether it is linked with terrorism or not, the mobilization potential of reserve components configured for intense, modern conventional conflict could well be crucial--as it has been for many countries around the world, including the United States, since the era of modern industrial war began in the late 19th Century."

Report Number:
CRS Report for Congress, RL31564
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