The Palm Beach Post from West Palm Beach, Florida on December 5, 1997 · Page 17
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The Palm Beach Post from West Palm Beach, Florida · Page 17

West Palm Beach, Florida
Issue Date:
Friday, December 5, 1997
Page 17
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THE PALM BEACH POST FRIDAY. DECEMBER 5, 1997 19A it Thurmond: I'll give up gavel next year; Two new National Guard units will be run by regular Army Some Senate Armed Services Committee members seek a younger, more forceful chairman. The Associated Press WASHINGTON On the eve of his 95th birthday, Sen. Strom Thurmond said Thursday he will step down as chairman of the 'T1 """r: --- 1 Senate Armed Services Committee at the end of next year. "I think the time has come for me to turn the reins of the committee over to the next generation of leadership, and I have decided that this next year is the natural time for me to gavel the Senate into business each morning, part of his duties as the" chamber's president pro tempore. He maintains a lively schedule. On his birthday today, for example, he plans to attend three events in Colum- ; bia, S.C, including an evening fund;; raiser at the governor's mansion for a ; monument the state legislature has'-' voted to build in his honor. But in recent years, his gait has , slowed slightly and his hearing has diminished. He has relied increasingly '' on note cards to question committee ' witnesses and rarely appears on tele-7 vision interview shows. .! He was hospitalized three times' this year, twice for observation overnight, including in October when he ' became dehydrated attending the ' Promise Keepers rally in Washington.''-' In February, he was hospitalized for -about 10 days with the flu. 1 v Thurmond first came to the Senate 1 as a Democrat after being elected as a ' write-in candidate in 1954. His 42 years four months in the Senate exceeds the ' 41 years 10 months served by the late Sen. Carl Hayden, D-Ariz. Seventeen! House members served longer than 42 years, four months. Thurmond was elected governor of South Carolina in 1946. Two years ' later, he ran unsuccessfully for presi-. dent as a states'-rights Dixiecrat. , The Associated Press WASHINGTON The Army has chosen Fort Riley, Kan., and Fort Carson, Colo., as the headquarters for two new Army National Guard divisions that will be commanded by active duty two-star Army generals. The step is part of an effort to smooth some long-simmering tensions between the full-time Army and the National Guard, which answers to state governors but can be put under federal command in national emergencies. The two so-called "integrated divisions" will be composed of three Army National Guard brigades and be organized under a headquarters unit composed primarily of active-duty soldiers, the Army said in a statement issued at the Pentagon. Each division has about 17,000 soldiers. "The National Guard leadership is supportive and enthusiastic of this significant step that furthers the 'integration of the active and National Guard combat structure," Maj. Gen. William Navas Jr., the director of the Army National Guard, said in the statement. The move provides for a full-time headquarters unit that can deal with the ongoing issues affecting each of the divisions, an Army official said. The brigades chosen as part of the first division at Fort Riley are the 30th Mechanized Infantry Brigade of North Carolina, the 218th Mechanized Infantry Brigade of South Carolina and the 48th Mechanized Infantry Brigade of Georgia. A liaison unit will be located at Fort Jackson, S.C. The brigades chosen as part of the second division at Fort Carson are the 45th Infantry Brigade of Oklahoma, the 39th Infantry Brigade of Arkansas and the 76th Infantry Brigade of Indiana. A liaison unit will be located at Fort Polk, La. Each of the headquarters units will comprise about 200 soldiers, and each liaison unit will consist of about 15 to 20 people. Neither of the two-star generals has been named. Tensions have arisen over the belief by some in the Army that some Guard units cannot deploy quickly enough and cannot, as part-time soldiers, meet the demands of high-tech warfare. not seek elected office again after his Senate term expires in 2003, when he would be 101. But word that Thurmond would step aside as committee chairman is sure to please other members of the panel, some of whom have wanted a younger, more forceful lawmaker to take his place. In 1996, some senior members of the committee raised with Senate Republican leaders the possibility of replacing Thurmond as chairman, but the move went nowhere. In his written statement, Thurmond said that prior to his reelection to the Senate last fall, he told senior committee members he would surrender the chairmanship after 1998. Asked if colleagues were pushing him to step down, Thurmond said, "No pressure." Thurmond's likely replacement would be Sen. John Warner, R-Va., 70, who has built a deferential relationship with the chairman. Thurmond is seen as more conservative than Warner. The ever-gracious Thurmond remains a vigorous, outgoing man who exercises nearly every day and presides assiduously over his committee. He also misses few opportunities Thurmond to relinquish the chairmanship," Thurmond, the longest-serving senator and oldest member of Congress ever, said in a written statement. Hours earlier, Thurmond had told The Associated Press that he might vacate the chairmanship, saying that serving for four years might be sufficient. "That will give a chance for other members to have an opportunity to serve," he said. "If I do it" Thurmond has already said he will II u in WM i) mm mm, flc worn mm mm aaaa 05 (Btmuni . . .,-,., .I. ,MI .1 I Mil ! Ill.-l.. "II IH m WUU mWNII,, .1. II I. I.-.IIII.I.-III- .MM .,-,-1-. 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Advertised merchandise may be available at sale prices in upcoming sale events. Selected collections, not every style and size in every store. No adjustments to prior sale purchases. Sale ends Sunday, December 7th, 1997, except for clearance items or as noted. Charge it with your Lord & Taylor Charge Card. We also accept American Express, MasterCard' Visa and the Discover Card. For the Lord & Taylor location nearest you, call 1-800-223-7440

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