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The National Guard... Still MIA

POSTED:

It's been one week since Rolling Stone and CBS independently spotlighted the failure of the Gulf governors to mobilize the National Guard to combat the oil inundating the region's marshes and beaches. (Read: Dereliction of Duty).

The spectacular failure of these governors to step up as commanders in chief continues.

In Louisiana, Republican Governor Bobby Jindal is still grandstanding in his "battle against federal red tape," rebuking Vice President Biden personally this week for the administration's supposed lack of "urgency" in fighting the War Against Oil. "They need decide if they're in the war to win it or not," Jindal said.

But Jindal's own actions suggest he's got little interest in taking the fight to the enemy. Indeed he's in retreat: Jindal has drawn down the number of National Guard on the front lines from 1,045 to 1,029 since our June 24th report.

(This may explain why Jindal also moved this week to lock down public access to records of his own response to this disaster.)

Across the Gulf, a net of only twenty additional National Guard troops have been activated this week. The number of miles of oiled coastline, meanwhile, has more than doubled, from 166 miles to 423.

Here, the latest figures of National Guard troop deployment provided by the Department of Homeland Security:

National Guard troops authorized by the Defense Department as of May 3 for activation by the Gulf states, free of charge = 17,500

National Guard troops activated as of June 30 by the governors: 1,605.

Percent idle: 91%

And a state-by-state breakdown:

Louisiana:
Troops Authorized: 6,000
Troops activated by Republican Governor Bobby Jindal: 1,029
Percent idle: 83%
Miles of state coastline oiled: 259

Alabama:
Authorized: 3,000
Activated by Republican Governor Bob Riley: 408
Percent idle: 86%
Miles oiled: 47

Florida:
Authorized: 2,500
Activated by Independent Governor Charlie Crist: 96
Percent idle: 96%
Miles oiled: 69

Mississippi: Authorized: 6,000
Activated by Republican Governor Haley Barbour: 72
Percent idle: 99%
Miles oiled: 48

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