Missouri’s National Guard is ready for Mexican border duty if President Bush calls it to duty. Governor Matt Blunt, the Guard commander in chief, says Missouri will respond to the President’s call for six-thousand National Guard members to help control illegal immigration from Mexico. Adjutant General King Sidwell says the Guard has more than enough people to provide Missouri’s share of people for that project, although the talent pool is smaller because much of the Guard’s authorized strength has seen call-ups for overseas duty. Sidwell says Missouri’s Guard could react to a major disaster or disease outbreak, even with its members in the desert – in the United States or in the Middle East. Sidwell says many details have to be worked out in the Pentagon, but he expects a callup pretty soon. Missouri is authorized to have 10,000 Guard members. About 1,300 are on overseas duty now.
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