Leadership: December 1, 1999

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Congress (which wants to award Teddy Roosevelt the Medal of Honor for leading the charge up San Juan Hill in the Spanish American War) is delaying considering of other Medals of Honor (most of them petitions to right a previous wrong by awarding a medal from a war long ago). The Army has not completed its review of Teddy Roosevelt, and other cases are also pending. Congress has not acted on a proposal to award the Medal to Sergeant Andrew Jackson Smith, an escaped slave who joined the Union Army in the Civil War and rescued his regiment's national colors during a battle.--Stephen V Cole

The 15 Nov issue of Army Times caused a brief stir when its cover photo showed the insignia of the defunct range of Specialist-5, which was removed from the Army rank structure in 1985. Specialists (now limited to pay grade 4 alone) are, in theory, soldiers who are not in leadership positions but must be paid more because of special skills. A week later, Army Times admitted that it had erred in the photo and did not intend to indicate that the Army was returning the higher specialist ranks to use. --Stephen V Cole

In recent readiness evaluations, none of the Army's ten divisions was rated as C1 (ready to go to war). Two of them were rated as C-4 (requiring major additions of troops and training to be ready for war, but OK to deploy in a crisis). The two divisions were the 1st Mechanized (which has a brigade in Kosovo) and the 10th Mountain (which has a brigade in Bosnia); it was the deployment of these troops to peacekeeping duties which reduced the readiness of the divisions. This was the first time "in recent memory" that any division had been rated as C-4. Divisions which had previously sent peacekeeping troops to the Balkans were not rated lower than C-3.--Stephen V Cole

 


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