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franklin county times

Air Guard missions increase

By By Marianne Todd/The Meridian Star
Sept. 15, 2001
The number of missions has increased for the 186th Air Refueling Wing of the Mississippi Air National Guard, but no details about those missions are being released, a spokesman said Friday.
The 186th is located at Key Field in Meridian.
Blanton said all units are ready to go if they are called under the presidential call-up authority.
Flight crews with the 186th received their first orders Tuesday night to dispatch to the southeast air defense sector in support of fighter aircraft on patrol. The southeast defense sector is located in Texas and surrounding air space.
Troops at the Mississippi National Guard are also poised to respond, but so far they have received no notification that their units will be part of the select reserve the president has called for, said spokesman Maj. Danny Blanton.
President Bush on Friday gave the Pentagon authority to call 50,000 reservists to active duty for homeland defense'' and other missions in response to the terrorist attacks.
A brief Pentagon announcement said the military services will be assigned to the following missions: port operations, medical support, engineer support, general civil support and homeland defense. In all, the United States has 1.3 million people in the reserves.
Marianne Todd is a staff writer for the Meridian Star. Call her at 693-1551, ext. 3236, or e-mail her at mtodd@themeridianstar.com. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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