Local News

Fort Bragg Soldiers Continue To Prepare For Possible Conflict

Posted September 20, 2001 11:42 a.m. EDT

— Soldiers at Fort Bragg are getting a realistic test as they await their next orders. The sound of machine guns and exploding grenades filled the air on post Tuesday as part of the Army post's live-fire exercises. The soldiers were putting nine weeks of fire training to the test -- training that could be put to use soon.

Fort Bragg officials have announced that they will not talk about any particular deployments that they may have been issued to the post. However, U.S. Army Secretary Thomas E. White did comment that deployment orders that were signed Thursday night by the Secretary of Defense will eventually include Army soldiers.

Many speculate the 82nd Airborne Division will be the first to go. Charlie Thorpe, the division's command sergeant major, said that decision does not add pressure, but some anxiousness among his troops.

"Every day, we train and plan for this because that is our mission," he said.

In other developments, 157 members of the 16th Military Police Brigade are heading in Washington, D.C. for humanitarian relief. They will be a part of "Operation Noble Eagle," which will help provide security for the city.