Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Military Policy Reversed!

Forwarded to me from Charles Bond:
Gary Marbut-MSSA [mailto:mssa@mtssa.org]
Sent: Tuesday, March 17, 2009 4:15 PM
To: mssa@mtssa.org
Subject: Flash - Military brass destruction policy reversed

Dear MSSA Friends,

I just received a phone call from the office of U.S. Senator Tester
of Montana to inform me that at 5:15 (EST) today a letter cosigned by
Senator Tester (D-MT) and Senator Baucus (D-MT) was faxed to the
Department of Defense asking DoD to reverse its new policy requiring
destruction of fired military cartridge brass. At 5:30, I am told,
Tester's office received a fax back from DoD saying that the brass
destruction policy IS reversed.

Others report to me that they are already seeing evidence of this on
the Websites of entities that liquidate surplus DoD commodities.

Our thanks go out to Senator Tester and Senator Baucus, and their
staff, for getting on this problem promptly and making the reversal happen

Staff for Tester and Baucus promise they will get me the
documentation for this reversal tomorrow morning. I'll forward that
when I get it.

Best wishes,

Gary Marbut, president
Montana Shooting Sports Association
author, Gun Laws of Montana


George said...

This is great news! I am sending senators Baucus and Tester my thanks now.

Normally, I would never consider voting for Democrats. If these guys keep this up, I will support their (Baucus and Tester) reelection.

We need all the help we can get.....

Anonymous said...

What wonderful news for everyone who shoots!

Anonymous said...

Awesome news!

Anonymous said...

Great news. There is still hope for America! Let's hope our new Senator from NY the honorable Ms. Gillibrand gets the message.

Jim Manley said...

This is great. Now, what about civilian sales of surplus ammunition?

Anonymous said...

Something doesn't add up here.

Gary Marbut is trying to give Baucus and Tester all the credit saying that they sent a FAX and an hour later the problem was solved.

If you look at the e-mail posted on the Georgia Arms website, the DLA had rescinded the order and sent e-mail notification to Larry Haynie before Marbut claims that Baucus and Tester even sent their magic FAX.

Anonymous said...

Let's not quibble over who gets credit for standing up and voicing opposition to the original notice. At least they stood up! I will be writing to my congresswoman and Senator in any case, even if it's after the reversal. I want them to ensure that this policy doesn't come back. That helps "set the nail".
Life Member

Anonymous said...

More info from Gary Marbut via David Codrea's "War on Guns" blog:

Howdy from Montana,

A lot of folks were involved in this turnaround.

The email from Government Liquidators to scrap buyers announcing the brass mutilation mandate went out on 3/12, Thursday at 5:34 PM.

I received a forwarded copy of this notice on 3/13, Friday at 8:17 AM.

I called NRA-ILA about 9AM and they said they were "aware of the problem."

The MSSA request to the Montana congressional delegation to fix the problem went out about Noon, and the MSSA alert about this went out at 12:56 PM (lunch hour) on Friday, 3/13.

Georgia Arms was also on this early, but I don't know exactly what day and time.

The MSSA alert I issued went viral on the Internet (way cool). It included the email addresses for the gun-issue staffers for our two Montana senators and our lone congressman, and a request for people to contact those staffers and ask for a fix.

LOTS of people responded to my gone-viral email AND to the efforts of Georgia Arms. However, only my email requested folks to contact the Montana congressional delegation.

On Tuesday, 3/17, at about 8:45 AM, the gun-issue staffer for Senator Tester called me to ask me to call off the dogs (my words). She said that she had not been able to clear her email inbox of military brass-related emails since Saturday, and that every time she'd empty her inbox, it would fill up again. She said that she had not been able to receive other important emails. She promised that Tester's office was working diligently on the problem.

She called me again at 4:30 on 3/17 to inform me that Montana Senators Tester and Baucus had cosigned and faxed a letter to DoD asking them to reverse the brass mutilation policy, and that less than 30 minutes later they received a reply back from DoD announcing that the policy was reversed.

Reading between the lines, this fast reply to the Baucus/Tester letter was in part because Baucus is Chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, which must approve the DoD budget of billions. But it also suggests that the Pentagon had been getting other calls on this issue and the attention of somebody important in the Pentagon had already been attracted. Actually, people who talked to the Pentagon on Tuesday told me that Pentagon personnel admitted privately that this issue had raised a "sh**storm" at DoD. The detail in the Baucus/Tester letter suggests that their staffers had been in communication with DoD on this issue on Monday and Tuesday.

It is nearly certain that DoD had received inquiries from the offices of other members of Congress stimulated to get involved by the alert done by Georgia Arms. The NRA may have made inquiries on Monday or Tuesday as well - they were researching the issue.

The primary credit for turning the brass mutilation order around goes to the gazillion folks who emailed and called to congressional offices demanding action.

Second level blame can be assigned to MSSA and Georgia Arms, the two entities which got the early word out about this problem.

Against that background, it does seem a bit disingenuous and ingracious for the NRA to have released a statement today that leads any uninformed reader to believe that the NRA solved the problem. If there is anything
universally known about the NRA it is that the NRA operates at a glacial pace.

And, because the NRA credits the Montana congressional delegation (but not MSSA) with having caused the reversal of the brass mutilation policy, one would guess they somehow sensed a Montana connection to the effort.

What is most important is that working together (thanks all of you!!), we got the job done.

Aren't the information age and the Internet (thanks Al) awesome?

Gary Marbut, president
Montana Shooting Sports Association
author, Gun Laws of Montana

3/18/2009 11:05 PM