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Monday, December 20, 2004

Powerline has more on the planted Humvee armor story. Turns out to be even more of a bogus question than suspected--as over 800 of the 830 Humvees belonging to that unit were ALREADY armored!!! Here's the December 15th transcript from a press conference by Major General Stephen Speakes
    "GEN. SPEAKES: Very, very good question. The first point is that you'll recollect that one of the questions was the status of the 278 ACR; in other words, the date that we had the visit by the secretary of Defense, we had a question about their up-armoring status. When the question was asked, 20 vehicles remained to be up-armored at that point. We completed those 20 vehicles in the next day. And so over 800 vehicles from the 278 ACR were up-armored, and they are a part now of their total force that is operating up in Iraq...

    Q At the time of the question -- summarize this, now -- that unit that the kid was complaining about was mostly armored?

    GEN. SPEAKES: Yes. In other words, we completed all the armoring within 24 hours of the time the question was asked...

    Q If he hadn't asked that question, would the up-armoring have been accomplished within 24 hours?

    GEN. SPEAKES: Yes. This was already an existing program. Remember that when I began this presentation we talked about General Schoomaker in his testimony in front of the HASC in November -- made it real clear. He said all vehicles operating north of the berm will be up-armored, and what that meant in common-sense language is you don't leave Kuwait without either an up-armor or an add-on armor solution. And we understood that, and most importantly the theater did. And so we were in constant dialogue, ensuring that we provided everything that was required to make this happen. And this didn't happen just for the 278th. In other words, the 256th, which was the Army Guard brigade directly in front of it, had the same identical solution; and although different numbers of vehicles, approximately the same solution in terms of percentage of fill." {emphasis added}

Time for Senator McCain to shut the hell up and remember the 11th Commandment.