United States should restore the militia to its original, constitutional
role of homeland security to provide the large numbers of trained, armed,
and disciplined military units that are needed to deal with terrorist attacks
America from terrorist attacks requires a lot of people. Managing the consequences
of the 11 September attack involved hundreds of firefighters, police officers,
emergency medical technicians, health care workers, engineers, military personnel,
and just plain citizens. Military forces in particular will be needed—most
of them for population control, physical security, and logistical support.
One of the most striking features of the 11 September response and recovery
operations was the large number of military personnel used to manage crowds,
secure the incident areas, and guard key facilities against follow-on attacks.
Most of the military personnel who helped out in the aftermath of the attack
were from the National Guard, many of them under state command and a few called
to active duty for various reasons.
the National Guard is no longer the militia. In accordance with the Total
Force Policy, the National Guard is funded, organized, trained, and equipped
by the Federal Government to wage war overseas. The National Guard and the
Federal Reserve Components (Army Reserve, Naval Reserve, Air Force Reserve,
and Marine Corps Reserve) are maintained “to be the initial and primary
source of augmentation of the active forces in a future emergency requiring
a rapid and substantial expansion of the active forces.”
National Guard sufficed during the Cold War in a dual status—as state forces
to respond to natural disasters and civil disorders in peacetime and as federal
forces for the hypothesized big war with the Soviet Union. That dual status
is no longer feasible during the war on terrorism when governors will need
to have assured access to substantial numbers of military personnel for homeland
security. Even if a portion of the National Guard is dedicated to homeland
security, the bulk of the National Guard is needed to augment the active Air
Force and Army. Governors cannot count on using National Guard units for homeland
security if those units are going to be mobilized to fulfill their federal
of expanding the National Guard to carry out its federal and state missions
at the same time, it would be better to rely on militia for the state missions.
Compared to the militia, the National Guard is expensive. It has costly equipment
(tanks, jet fighters, missiles) not needed for homeland security operations,
and it requires highly trained personnel, 10 percent of whom are full-timers
provided to ensure the combat readiness of the part-timers. Even in wartime,
the size of the defense budget will limit the strength of the armed forces,
including the National Guard, to those needed for winning the war against
terrorism, continuing ongoing smaller-scale contingencies, transforming to
a future force, and remaining ready to deal with other major theater wars.
of the large numbers of military personnel needed to defend America can be
provided at low cost by using militia to provide troops for the governors
to use to maintain law and order and protect the citizens of their states
in the face of the full range of emergencies—particular terrorist attacks.
While terrible, the 11 September attack and the subsequent anthrax attacks
are small in comparison to possible future campaigns, which could include
a major coordinated set of attacks that disrupt essential services over a
large section of the country for weeks or months. In that kind of complex,
coordinated terrorist campaign, governors would need state military forces
in addition to the federally funded National Guard to maintain law and order.
Unfortunately, these state military forces—the real militia—do not exist in
effective form today.
understand why the United States no longer has the militia provided for in
the Constitution, it is useful to start at the beginning of American military
policy. Like so many other things, our current condition is the result of
years of adjustments to the original vision of the Founding Fathers.
of the Seven Years War
Sometimes a book
comes along at just the right time to change one’s entire way of thinking
on a particular topic. That is the case with Fred Anderson’s fascinating book
about the Seven Years War.
The book is not only a good read, but it also makes it clear
that the foundations of American military policy stemmed from a war that most
people consider to be merely a rather mysterious prequel to the American Revolution.
Specifically, this book provides the basis for new understanding of the role
of the militia in national defense.
An uneasy and contentious relationship between the militia and the regulars is
a major theme in American military policy. Many students of American military
policy assume that this relationship between the militia and the regulars
originated in the Revolutionary War.
The Battle of
Lexington in 1775 epitomizes the minuteman tradition of the militia. The Battle
of Chippewa, 1812, epitomizes the regular army tradition of contempt for the
militia. (The British Commander, General Riall, noting the steadfastness of
Winfield Scott’s brigade under fire, is said to have uttered, “Those
are Regulars, by God!” Actually, the joke was on Riall, for as David
Eisenhower reveals in his excellent biography of Scott, those “regulars”
were really raw recruits rigorously trained by Scott and his officers for
90 days—the same training period considered necessary today to train a National
Guard combat brigade to be ready to fight.
suggests that the fundamentals of American military policy with respect to
the militia were established during the Seven Years War.
is an important point. If the Lexington-Chippewa paradigm is followed,
there is a two-way division between militia and regulars. Until the Cold
War, American military policy had been to retain a small force of regulars
that would be augmented by militia in the event of war. However, practice
did not match this putative policy. For the first 130 years of our military
history, to wage war the minuscule regular army was augmented by volunteer
units—not by the militia per se. Oh, yes, in some instances militia
units volunteered en masse (or almost en masse) to become
volunteer units, but they served as volunteers.
the 20th century, the militia became increasingly professionalized
until under the Total Force Policy it became a de facto federal
force. In the 21st century, the distinction between the militia
and the regulars has narrowed even more as efforts to “integrate”
the National Guard and the Reserves put them to work doing the same things
that the active components do. The two-way division between the militia
and the regulars does not explain the historical experience and makes
it hard to envision the proper role of the National Guard and the Reserves
in homeland security.
book makes it clear that there was actually a three-way split—regulars,
provincial troops, and militia. This formulation provides a historical
precedent and a logical foundation that explain how the relationship that
was the legacy of the Seven Years War has evolved into the situation of
the Seven Years War, there were three separate military forces, or components,
as we now call them: British regulars, provincial troops, and the militia.
The British regulars and the provincial troops were both excellent military
organizations, and they did the expeditionary fighting into the wilderness.
The militia stayed home and guarded their own villages and towns. The
British Army forces were long-term professionals schooled in the linear
tactics of continental warfare, well armed, well trained, and disciplined
for withstanding the rigors of musketry. Provincial troops were volunteers
who enlisted for a fixed term of service of 6 months or a year and were
paid by the colonies. In their own way, the provincials were also competent,
well armed, well trained, and disciplined. They were not a ragtag militia
in any sense. The First Virginia Regiment commanded by Colonel George
Washington and the Second Virginia Regiment commanded by William Byrd
were disciplined organizations made up entirely of volunteers who defended
the frontier of Virginia while the militia was used for local internal
Provincial troops from New England, particularly from the
Massachusetts Bay Colony, served alongside the British regulars in the
defeat at Fort William Henry (1758), battles in upper New York (1759),
the conquest of Canada (1760), and the invasion of Cuba (1762).
British Army had a superior attitude and condescended to the provincial
troops. In fact, early on in the Seven Years War, the British policy was
that a British Army subaltern (second lieutenant) outranked colonels and
even generals in the provincial troops. The colonists objected to this
rule and simply refused to go on campaigns with the British troops. That
is why the two forces campaigned separately for much of the early part
of the war. After a few years, the rule was relaxed, but the British Army
maintained a haughty attitude toward the provincials to the end, which
contributed no doubt to their subsequent defeat in the Revolutionary War.
National Guard of today is the modern counterpart of the provincial forces
of the Seven Years War. They are professionals, albeit part-timers, and
their role is to fight alongside the regular forces on foreign campaigns.
Gradually during the twentieth century, the militia, whose role is to
defend the homeland, disappeared.
the Spanish-American War, in which volunteer forces played an important
part, the Army became more professional in order to meet the challenges
inherent in supporting the nation’s new international role. The militia,
having been notably inept in previous wars, was also professionalized.
It was provided with federal funding, equipment, and training, and in
return it was expected to meet federal standards for recruiting, officer
training, professional military education, promotion, and performance.
In effect, the National Guard was being transformed from the militia into
the modern equivalent of provisional forces.
the two world wars, the National Guard was called into federal service
and contributed trained officers, soldiers, and units to help the regular
army expand. During the Cold War, the National Guard was transformed from
an ill-equipped, undermanned, half-trained organization into a first-class
fighting force capable of providing a strong second echelon of reinforcements
to wage global conventional war against the Soviet Union. The transformation
culminated in 1989, at the end of the Cold War, by which time the National
Guard had reached unprecedented heights of military professionalism and
competence in its primary role as the reserve of the Army and Air Force.
the end of the Cold War, the National Guard did not return to a militia
posture. Facing unanticipated demands to conduct sustained smaller-scale
contingencies while maintaining readiness for theater wars, the regulars
found it necessary to call on the National Guard (and the federal Reserve
components as well) to provide additional units and personnel to sustain
current operations. The National Guard in effect was being transformed
yet again, this time into a peacetime quasi-active force. The Air National
Guard and Air Force Reserve had already become quasi-active forces in
the 1980s, when by a process of self-selection their membership became
composed largely of personnel who were willing to spend more than the
minimum training time of 39 days per year and contributed significant
effort to sustain Air Force operations worldwide.
the 1990s, the trend toward peacetime use of part-time solders to augment
inadequate regular forces accelerated. Increased use of National Guard
and Reserve forces for peacetime operations was supported (and perhaps
stimulated) by the presence in each Reserve component of a significant
number of full-time active Guard-Reserve personnel—mostly officers and
senior noncommissioned officers. These active Guard-Reserve personnel,
whose active Guard-Reserve status was their primary job, soon moved into
key command and staff positions. Many of these full-time military personnel
welcomed the opportunity to participate in operational missions in support
of the active components.
result of all this is that the Guard and the Reserve are today highly
professional forces that are structured, trained, and totally committed
to their role as the reserve of the armed forces for major and minor wars
and overqualified and too expensive to serve as militia in defense of
the homeland, and maybe committed elsewhere.
Forces in the World Wars
A note on nomenclature is needed at this point.
Many names have been applied to the various forms of militia. Here, the general
term home defense forces is used to describe existing state military
forces other than the National Guard. These home defense forces have been
called many things, including National Guard Reserves, State Guards, Home
Guards, State Defense Forces, and State Military Forces. These terms will
be used in connection with a particular era. The generic term home defense
forces from here forward will be used in descriptions of policy and programs.
World War I and World War II, the National Guard was mobilized into federal
service and unavailable to serve as state troops. However, the governors’
responsibilities for disaster response and civil security did not stop during
the war, and some threats, such as sabotage and enemy raids, become more important
than in peacetime. Home defense forces were authorized by Congress and formed
in most states to meet the homeland defense needs of those eras.
Constitution does not provide for home defense forces. In fact, the Constitution
says: “No State shall, without the consent of the Congress …
keep troops, or ships of war in time of peace …” (Article I,Section
the preparedness period just prior to U.S. involvement in World War I, Congress
for the first time consented to having home defense forces for the states
in the event that the National Guard was federalized. The wording is somewhat
convoluted. Section 61 of the National Defense Act of 1916 says: “No
state shall maintain troops in time of peace other than as authorized in accordance
with the organization prescribed in this Act.” Section 79 of the Act,
however, says that when the National Guard is federalized, “there shall
be immediately organized” reserve battalions of infantry or cavalry to
constitute the fourth battalion of each regiment ordered to active duty. Since
the states were forbidden to form units other than police or constabulary
in peace, they had little time to organize the reserve units required by the
act. When the National Guard was federalized
in 1916 and 1917 for World War I, several governors were reluctant to allow
them to go overseas because of the need for state troops to maintain civil
In response to that need, localities formed police and paramilitary units,
and as the nation approached war with Germany, the states also organized their
own police and military forces. Although this was, strictly speaking, illegal,
it was allowed. The result was a hodgepodge of unit types with varying degrees
of training and varying quality of equipment. As the war got under way, Congress
authorized the states to form home guards.
Home Defense Act was enacted on 14 June 1917 in response to the evident need
for military forces to serve as state troops. The act established the rules
for federal support of the home guards and legitimized what had already been
done de facto by the states. The act authorized the Secretary of War, during
the emergency, to “issue from time to time to the several States and
Territories and the District of Columbia for the equipment of such home guards
having the character of State police or constabulary as may be organized under
the direction of the governors of the several states …” The law
gave specific permission to provide “rifles and ammunition, cartridge
belts, haversacks, canteens, in limited amounts as available supplies will
December 1917, there were home guard units in 42 states, and these had an
aggregate strength of about 100,000 men.
involvement in World War I lasted 19 months, and the problems posed by home
defense were met adequately by improvised local and state solutions. After
the war, some of the home guards were transferred to the National Guard, but
most of the units were dissolved. The home guards were gone, but the need
for organized military units to provide home defense was still remembered
when the nation started preparing for World War II.
efforts were made to provide for internal security in World War II. State
guards were organized in 46 states and Puerto Rico, with an aggregate strength
of about 150,000 members. These state guards were used for four principal
missions during the war: peacetime duties of the National Guard, full-time
guard duty in coastal areas during the year after the attack on Pearl Harbor,
as auxiliary combat troops in the event of hostile invasion (1942–1944), and,
after March 1944, primarily for internal security. The idea behind the state
guards of World War II is well stated in the following excerpt from the HERO
keeping with the managerial requirements of total war, the federal government
coordinated domestic military planning, participated actively in setting
standards for state military forces, and provided arms, equipment, training,
technical guidance, and some financial assistance to the states. Overlapping
federal and state roles occasionally blurred the traditional constitutional
distinction between the responsibility for repelling invasion and the
duty to maintain local law and order. Wartime developments resulted in
several changes of mission for home defense forces including a combat
role. Although never called upon to fight, state forces in World War II
provide a successful substitute for the National Guard in the more routine
internal security duties.
primary focus of the state guards, despite the excursion into a combat role,
was on espionage, sabotage, and maintenance of law and order. The National
Defense Act of 1916 was modified in 1940 to provide a legal basis for the
state guards and authorized support for them by the Secretary of War. State
guards were intended to be “solely state forces, whose employment and
composition were determined by the governors. Federal involvement was still
intended to be indirect and limited.… Training objectives would be prescribed
by state authorities …”
of the uneven distribution and readiness of the state guard units, the government
did not rely exclusively on them for internal security. The U.S. Army also
played a prominent role in homeland security. After the attack on Pearl Harbor,
the Army used 30,000 combat troops for a few weeks to provide physical security
for vital installations, such as war production plants and key military facilities.
In January 1942, the Army formed 51 Zone of the Interior military police battalions
staffed by officers and noncommissioned officers too old for combat duty and
limited-service enlisted personnel. The number of Zone of the Interior military
police battalions was later increased to 89. These battalions were not used
as guards at key facilities, but were stationed near important installations
to act as reinforcements for the state guards in case of civil disturbances
or other emergencies.
biggest problem facing the state guards during World War II was the demanding
requirement for static physical security. The state guards were neither organized
nor intended for continuous full-time service. State guardsmen were civilians
with jobs, and they expected brief periods of active duty in case of disasters,
riots, or attacks. Guarding facilities was labor intensive, boring, and costly.
Moreover, the employment of large numbers of personnel on static guard duties
reduced the number of personnel available for dealing with specific emergencies.
To meet all the requirements, many states encouraged the formation of local
home defense forces in addition to the state guards. Other measures were taken
to provide for physical security of key facilities. The Coast Guard used special
police to guard the ports. Private companies were held responsible for the
security of their factories and warehouses.
state guards were separate from the Civil Defense Program structure, which
was supported by the federal government and staffed by civilians, many of
them volunteers. In most states, the state guards and civil defense programs
were linked only at the very top, in the person of the state adjutant general.
As the war went on, these two organizations learned to cooperate.
World War II, the state guard program was terminated. The enabling provisions
of Section 61 that had been enacted in 1940 to permit formation of state guard
units were rescinded. The National Security Act of 1947 made no provision
for state guards. After worthwhile service in World
War II, the state guards disappeared as the National Guard returned to reassume
its traditional role as state troops.
was a brief flurry of interest in home defense forces in 1949–1950, when the
Cold War was just getting started. Studies of the Civil Defense Program by
the National Security Council and the Department of Defense (DoD) concluded
that state internal security duties were “only semi-military functions”
and that the forces performing them should not be combat units because they
would be taking the place of National Guard units, whose “military character
derived form their federal mission.”
effort was overtaken by the Korean War, for which National Guard units were
mobilized from several states. The National Guard Association in August 1950
sponsored legislation to allow cadres of state military forces to be maintained
at all times in addition to the National Guard. The Army objected to the provision
of the bill that made the National Guard Bureau responsible for the coordination
and planning with the states. The bill was passed on 27 September 1950.
states organized state military forces to replace mobilized National Guard
units. Because the war required only a partial mobilization of the National
Guard, there was uncertainty and uneven action to form National Guard Reserve
units. The Army was preoccupied with avoiding defeat in Korea while creating
an effective combat force in Germany. DoD did little to support the home defense
internal security battalions that some of the states were forming. There was
great confusion and little progress. The result was that some states had these
forces, and others did not. The program was not a great success, despite the
initial enthusiasm and the need. When the federal authority for state home
defense forces expired in September 1952, the existing forces were disbanded.
the next 30 years, there was almost complete inactivity in the state guard
program. Federal authority had lapsed, and a few states, such as New York
and Texas, retained state guard units, but for all practical purposes the
home defense forces disappeared, along with knowledge about them.
Revival of Home Defense Forces for the Final Cold War Campaign
the 1980s, the Office of the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Reserve
Affairs initiated a revival of the home defense forces.
At this time,
the Office of the Secretary of Defense became really serious about “a
major conventional option” in Europe in the late 1970s and early 1980s.
President Carter, and then President Reagan, wanted to avoid nuclear warfare
and preferred to have a credible capability to fight the Warsaw Pact without
having to resort to first use of nuclear weapons. The national security strategy
called for total mobilization of the entire force structure of all the military
services—active, Guard, and Reserve. The war plan also called for the deployment
of almost all of those forces to the theaters of war—primarily Europe. That
meant that the homeland would be left without adequate forces to preserve
civil security or deal with the threats of enemy actions. A massive nuclear
attack and Spetznaz (Soviet special operations forces) raids were the threats
in those days. Although there would be many active-duty military personnel
in the United States, these would be service troops engaged full-time in supporting
the military forces operating overseas. There would be few if any federal
military personnel available for home defense, and the National Guard would
not be available to the governors.
drive for a major conventional option in Europe was accompanied by the Strategic
Defense Initiative and a renewed interest in the Civil Defense Program. When
considering how to maintain civil government and save lives in the event of
a Soviet nuclear attack, one of the missing ingredients was state troops.
Reserve Affairs Office in the Office of the Secretary of Defense set about
to take care of this problem. A historical review of previous efforts was
commissioned. The law was researched. A program was initiated to encourage
the states to form and sustain State Defense Forces to provide military forces
for the governors in the event of war. Authority was obtained to provide from
excess DoD stocks the rifles, vehicles, uniforms, and radios the State Defense
Forces would need for training and to do their jobs if called on.
State Defense Forces program was a vital element of plans to protect the population
against a massive Soviet nuclear attack and to reconstitute society under
civil rule in the aftermath of that attack. A major assumption in the Civil
Defense Program was that the armed forces and their reserve components, including
the National Guard, would be busy prosecuting the war that led to the nuclear
attack and would not be available to participate in civil defense. The Civil
Defense Program was designed to rely entirely on civil agencies and private-sector
companies. However, the need for properly trained, equipped, and disciplined
military units was evident, and the State Defense Forces were intended to
meet that need.
for the revived State Defense Forces program was assigned within DoD to the
National Guard Bureau and the adjutants general of the states. This was logical,
for once the National Guard was on federal active duty, the National Guard
would have no real mission in the war and could be gainfully employed in support
of the governors in the homeland defense mission by seeing to the support
of the State Defense Forces. The adjutants general and the state military
headquarters also would not be placed on federal active duty and would continue
to command the state military forces for the governors, except that these
would be the militia (State Defense Forces) instead of the provincial troops
seemed as if an effective program had been established to fill the needs of
the governors for military forces when the National Guard was mobilized and
deployed overseas. This was too optimistic.
to Homeland Defense Forces
There are no effective home defense forces in
the United States today because of the opposition to them by the National
Guard, the adjutants general of the states, and the National Guard Association
of the United States. The proximate cause of this unsatisfactory situation
is the failure of the National Guard Bureau to carry out its assigned mission
to encourage and support strong home defense forces for Cold War duties.
National Guard Bureau was not enthusiastic from the start about the State
Defense Forces program of the 1980s. Responsibility for the program was assigned
to the care of a mid-level civil servant and allowed to languish in the backwaters
of the bureaucracy. After an initial period of growth, the State Defense Forces
Guard leaders, including many of the adjutants general, admit in moments of
candor that they do not like the State Defense Forces program. They complain
that the State Defense Forces were too political, had too many generals and
colonels, and were just a bunch of old fogies interested more in wearing uniforms
than in doing anything useful. It seems that some State Defense Force generals
had obtained three stars, and this offended the adjutants general, who had
only two. There was also talk about the Home Defense Forces putting on airs
and competing with the “real” National Guard. There were turf battles
in some states between the National Guard and the state guard, which appears
odd because in all of the statutes but one the adjutants general command both
the National Guard and the State Defense Force. But these complaints are petty
and do not justify abandoning the State Defense Force program. After all,
the National Guard Bureau and the adjutants general were in charge and were
responsible for the decline of the State Defense Forces. The National Guard
won a decisive victory in the turf battles, for the State Defense Forces today
official militia still exists in 19 states.
They are called
state guards or State Defense Forces and are authorized and commanded by the
governors acting through the state adjutant general. They consist of volunteers
who train and also provide emergency and community support services. Members
are obliged to serve on state active duty if so ordered by the governor.
The strength and level of activity of the state guards are
determined by the attitudes of their adjutants general and vary widely from
state to state. Strength has declined in recent years and they now have an
aggregate strength of about 8,000, mostly older people, as they themselves
admit somewhat bitterly.
is useful to consider why the National Guard, which has been transformed into
professional provincial troops to fight alongside the regulars, has such contempt
for the militia from which they sprang; it is curious because the National
Guard in its new role as integrated provincial troops faces the same kind
of contempt from the regulars in the active components. Despite the Total
Force Policy and a long menu of integration efforts, the Army in particular
does not like the National Guard very much and would really like to be able
to fight without it. Apparently, the National Guard, which knows it is scorned
by the regulars, feels compelled to look down upon the state guard in the
same way. People are strange.
sad story of the state guard would be merely another interesting bit of historical
trivia were it not for the fact that there is today neither an effective force
nor a workable plan to have state military forces either to substitute for
the National Guard when it is mobilized or, more likely in the current war,
to augment the National Guard when it is fully committed.
of the Constitutional Militia
The President and Congress should consider authorizing
and encouraging the governors to establish effective state guards to serve
as state troops for homeland defense. President Bush, Homeland Security Director
Tom Ridge, and Attorney General John Ashcroft have been governors, and they
know the importance of state military forces.
revitalized state guards should be under the command of the respective governors
and be dedicated to homeland defense duties within their respective states.
They should be supported by the states but subsidized by the federal government
at least to the extent of making military uniforms, arms, field gear, vehicles,
radios, and other supplies and equipment available from DoD stocks deemed
as excess to the needs of the armed forces and the National Guard.
on analysis of threats and capabilities, each state’s governor should propose
the personnel strength needed for the state guard. While each state would
vary in strength, if the average strength for the 50 states is 5,000 personnel(a small number given the need), the total number of state guards nationwide
would be 250,000. This is quite likely a low figure, and the total that might
be needed to deal with a massive attack could be more like 500,000.
rules and regulations for members of the state guard would be prescribed in
federal statute and state law. Here are some possible guidelines.
The members of
state guard units should be volunteers from the ages of 18 to 65. They would
agree to serve for 2 to 3 years and complete successfully a short (2- to3-week) initial training period plus one week of annual training. They would agree
to serve from time to time on full-time state duty during emergencies. The
recruiting base from which the state guardsmen would join includes older people
(many with prior military service), young people disinclined to enlist in
an active or Reserve component, and many of those who do not qualify for service
in the armed forces. There would have to be minimum standards of physical
condition and prior behavior. The governors would appoint officers on the
basis of local recommendations.
state guards should be organized and equipped for internal security duties—primarily
population control, physical security, and logistical support. There could
be three basic kinds of units. Mobile security battalions would resemble military
police battalions and have small arms and light automatic weapons, light vehicles,
and lots of radios. Physical security battalions would be organized to provide
full-time security at key installations for extended periods. Support battalions
would provide a capability to marshal and manage the use of civil resources
for emergency response. Brigade headquarters would command several battalions
for training and operations, and the brigades would report to the state military
headquarters. Minimum training requirements, including qualification in small
arms and light automatic weapons, would be established. A standard uniform
should be adopted for all state guards, with state and local identity displayed
by distinctive shoulder patches.
for the formation, organization, and support of the new state guard units
should be assigned to an agency in the executive branch of the federal government.
The National Guard Bureau would still be the best headquarters to perform
this task, but given its previous opposition to state guards, this might not
work out well. It might be prudent instead to task the Federal Emergency Management
Agency to manage the state guard program as part of its overall responsibility
to coordinate civil preparedness. The assignment of this job is up to the
United States needs a secure base from which to wage unrelenting war on terrorism.
Many things need to be done to provide that secure base and defend America.
One important step would be to provide at low cost a significant number of
trained military personnel who would be dedicated to support state and local
authorities in preparing for and responding to terrorist attacks. This can
be done by restoring and revitalizing the militia—state guards—to perform
their original, constitutional role.
on an end note number to return to the article.
 Secretary of Defense Melvin B. Laird, Memorandum to the Secretary of the Military Departments, 21 August 1970, quoted in Stephen M. Duncan, Citizen Warriors (Novato, CA: Presidio Press, 1997), pp. 140–141. This
statement by Laird is the Total Force Memorandum.
 Fred Anderson, Crucible of War: The
Seven Years War and the Fate of Empire in British North America,
1754–1766(New York:Alfred A. Knopf, 2000). (In Europe, the war lasted
from 1756 to 1763, hence the name; in North America, the fighting
covered a longer period.)
 I am one of those persons, and the Seven Years
War was a real revelation for me.
 John S. D. Eisenhower, Agent of Destiny: The
Life and Times of General Winfield Scott (New York: The Free Press, 1997). See Chapter 8, “Victory at Chippewa,” especially
pp. 77–84, for an account of this battle.
 All events and policies have historical antecedents,
but in some cases, including this one, the events of an era have great
influence in shaping subsequent events and policies.
Anderson, op. cit., pp. 159–160, 203–204, 230–231.
 Anderson, op. cit., passim.
 T. N. Dupuy, Grace Hayes, Bradley Chase, and Thomas
Tulenko, US Homeland Defense Forces Study, Historical Evaluation
and Research Organization, 1981. I commissioned this study while
serving as the Special Assistant to the Deputy Assistant Secretary
of Defense for Reserve Affairs. It is the definitive, and perhaps
only, work on this subject.
 Home Defense Forces Study, pp. 6–8.
 In this discussion, the term state includes
territories and the District of Columbia.
 Quoted in the Home Defense Forces Study, p. 10.
 Home Defense Forces Study, p. 32.
 I was a senior executive in the Office of the
Secretary of Defense during this period, serving in the Reserve Affairs
Office, and was instrumental in recognizing the need and initiating
action to revive the state defense force program.
 As associate director of the Federal Emergency
Management Agency for National Preparedness Programs, I helped formulate
the conceptual framework and plans for population protection and continuity
official militia is not to be confused with the unauthorized and
illegal “militias” that exist in some states to represent
extreme political views.
 Paul T. McHenry, “Militias Are Official
in 25 States,” State Guard Association of the United States
official website: www.sgaus.org,
28 October 2000.
interviews with Brigadier General M. Hall Worthington, President
of the State Guard Association of the United States, and Colonel
Paul T. McHenry, the association’s former Executive Director, 25
October 2001. Colonel McHenry has written several articles about
the recent history of the state guard. The articles may be viewed
on the association’s website.
 Just about a year ago, when I was thinking hard
about the problem of homeland defense, I ventured to ask a highly
respected National Guard general about the chances of resurrecting
the home defense forces, and he replied that this would be difficult
because the adjutants general did not like them. Same old story!
 These are merely possibilities. A working group
consisting of federal and state officials should be formed to establish
the policies and regulations for the administration of the state