Some 300 more Iowans got the call this week to active duty. National Guard spokesman Colonel Robert King says there’s a rigidly-established protocol for how the call-up works.The guard headquarters gets a classified document with the mobilization information from Washington, DC, and in turn passes the information on to commanders and staff officers at headquarters, and each in turn uses a “calling tree” to phone up subordinate leaders until all the soldiers are notified. When troops from Red Oak, Perry, Audubon, Dubuque, and Jefferson report, they won’t head right for the Mideast. They’re assigned a “mobilization station” where the unit goes from their home armory, and will be assessed to make sure their training readiness has them prepared to do the kind of task their unit prepared for. Once they’re validated, their equipment’s loaded for wherever they’re going, and military air carriers come to take the soldiers to their “theatre of operations,” and they depart. Colonel King says they don’t know for sure how fast that call-up will be carried out from the phone call to a reservist’s home to the landing at that theatre of operations. A week ago Monday he says they got an alert for a transportation company from Mason City and medics from Iowa City, but it changed “almost overnight” to a mobilization order and seven days later the guard had held its traditional farewell ceremony and they were gone. King says other units got notice of mobilization three weeks ago but haven’t gotten further instructions yet. He says it’s based on the army’s need for a certain unit in a certain time or place, and what transportation’s available to get them and their equipment there. The eleven-68th Transportation Company from Red Oak, Perry and Audubon and the fifteen-55th Quartermaster Detachment of Dubuque will go to a mobilization station at Fort McCoy, Wisconsin. The 185th rear operations center of Jefferson goes to its mobilization station in Fort Riley, Kansas. In addition, Company “B”, first Battalion, 147th Aviation of Boone has been “notified for possible alert” for mobilization.
You are here: / / National Guard never knows when the call up will come