GUARD ADDRESS: Transition Time For Soldiers
Troop draw-down in Afghanistan was highlighted in the Condition of the Guard Address Wednesday. The difficult reality that our servicemen and women from all branches will be hit hard with the reduction of military forces around the world was also a focus.
Major General Timothy Orr addressed the media and lawmakers Wednesday morning during a joint session at the Statehouse. He said since a large deployment in 2010, demand for Iowa National Guard forces has declined.
After 12 years of war, all Iowa National Guard units are home from Iraq and Afghanistan.
Orr says over the next five years, several hundred thousand men and women from all services will be released from active duty and returned to civilian status. He says although the transition will be rough for some, Gov. Terry Branstad’s Home Base Iowa initiative will help veterans find training and jobs in the state.
Orr also addressed the new remote piloting aircraft program coming to the Des Moines International Airport later this fall. Orr says this new operation could give back jobs to those who may have lost theirs.
“That mission is brand new brought to us by the Air Force as we lost the F-16, so the next 2-3 years we are focused on getting our members to training.”
Read the entire Condition of the Guard Address here.