To the editor:
The Pentagon plans to close the principal U.S. Army Reserve unit in Lawrence, the 317th Supply and Service Battalion. This is a part of the government post-cold war program to trim military forces. Other Army Reserve units in Kansas may be deactivated as well.
The 317th Supply and Service Battalion is composed of 69 part-time reservists and seven full-time staff, mostly from the Lawrence area. The 317th is scheduled to shut down Sept. 15, 1993.
During Desert Storm/Desert Shield, 85,000 Army Reservists were called to duty including over one-third of the 317th six subordinate unit soldiers. They were highly praised. They readily and willingly served their country.
Without warning the House Armed Services Committee, at the urging of its chair, Rep. Les Aspin, cut the Army Reserve almost 39,000 members below this year's 296,230 number. This has led to the projection of the inactivation of the 317th Supply and Service Battalion in Lawrence as well as other Kansas Army Reserve units. Deeper cuts are even planned for the ``out years.'' In addition to the $5 million in Army Reserve payroll and other money spent in the state of Kansas by these Kansas units, the cuts may put the U.S. Army Reserve (USAR) in the position of not being a sustainable force.
The Senate Armed Services Committee on July 24 voted to keep the USAR strength at 296,230. After the full Senate votes, there will be a conference with the House.
``Strength in Reserve'' is the U.S. Army Reserve motto. It has proven itself many times. Now it is even more worthwhile since it's a bargain when compared to the cost of full-time troops doing the same job. The 317th Supply and Service Battalion in Lawrence, Kansas, has not failed to be ready to serve our country. We hope the Congress won't fail us now.
Stanley G. Remer,