2003 CPEO Military List Archive

From: CPEO Moderator <cpeo@cpeo.org>
Date: 1 Aug 2003 15:25:19 -0000
Reply: cpeo-military
Subject: [CPEO-MEF] 'Informal' Makua talks criticized
'Informal' Makua talks criticized
By William Cole
Posted on: Friday, August 1, 2003

The Army has initiated what it says are "informal" talks with the U.S.
Fish and Wildlife Service on environmental damage from last week's fire
in Makua Valley, but the Earthjustice Legal Defense Fund said the step
falls short of the comprehensive review that is legally required.

"If they refuse to do (the comprehensive review) we'll evaluate their
reasons, and we'll seriously consider taking legal action," Earthjustice
attorney David Henkin said.

For the Army, it could be a bad case of deja vu.

In 1998, after a string of training-related fires, Earthjustice served
notice that it intended to sue the Army to force it to complete the
first such review.

After a Marine training accident involving mortars subsequently scorched
800 acres in the 4,190-acre valley, the Army agreed to the
habitat-protection study, and training was stopped voluntarily.

A repeat could mean a halt to training this fall, just as the Army
prepares for the consecutive deployment of two brigades of 3,500
soldiers each to Afghanistan.

"The linkage to (training in) Makua Valley, it really hits home when you
get the call to go into combat," said Schofield Barracks spokeswoman
Maj. Stacy Bathrick.

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