New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - March 1, 1983, New Braunfels, Texas
New Braunfels Hwa\&Zeitung Tuesday, March 1,1983 3More advisers possible for El Salvador
WASHINGTON (AP) - The Reagan administration may expand both the number and the role of American military trainers in El Salvador to meet what one congressman calls a rapidly deteriorating military situation.
An escalation of U.S. manpower in El Salvador would be in addition to the administration's request for a $60 million increase in military assistance this year.
A senior American official traveling aboard President Reagan’s plane to California on Monday told reporters the administration has been reviewing policy toward El Salvador for the past four weeks under orders from the president.
The official, who insisted on anonymity, said Reagan has not yet made up his mind (rn what course to take, partly because he has been receiving conflicting advice from his subordinates.
Since March 1981, the administration has set a ceiling of 55 military trainers in El Salvador and limited their role to non-combat situations The current number of trainers is
The administration’s reassessment of the situation appears to reflect dissatisfaction with the performance of the Salvadoran
military In recent weeks.
Contrary to American advice, the Salvadorans have been mounting massive sweeps of the countryside rather than frequent small-scale patrols.
One theory for the Salvadoran tactics was offered Monday by Robert S. Leiken of the Georgetown Center for Strategic and International Studies.
“Large-scale brigade size operations are more lucrative for the commanders,” he told the House Foreign Affairs Committee. “They are able to skim off the top expenses for food (and) fuel. Small patrols mean that the pie is sliced in smaller portions.”
Leiken said that “cronyism and corruption is rampant" in the Salvadoran army, which “is not under present circumstances capable of winning the war or of containing the guerrillas."
Presumably, the lifting of restrictions on the U.S. trainers would permit them to be present at the brigade and provincial command levels, thus giving tf*»m the opportunity to have more direct influence over counter-insurgency operations.
A month ago, three American trainers were sent home after they had been involved in
tactical operations against the guerrillas.
For the past several weeks, the administration has said publicly that the military situation in El Salvador has remained essentially unchanged despite an increase in guerrilla activity.
Secretary of State George P. Shultz altered that position somewhat on Monday when he told a Senate subcommittee that the battlefield situation had “stagnated” because of a decline in U.S. military aid.
However, Rep. Michael Barnes, D-Md., chairman of the House Foreign Affairs subcommittee on inter-American affairs, said Monday, “The situation is deteriorating very rapidly. The left has been able to do things militarily in the last couple of months that I don’t think most people would have thought possible.”
Barnes was one of a group of senators and House members who met with Reagan Monday morning to discuss the possibility of an aid increase.
The administration, recognizing the political sensitivity of any escalation of American involvement, appears intent on consulting fully with Congress before reaching final decisions.
“I think there are an awful lot of questions that members of Congress are going to want to have answered before they vote for a big increase in military assistance to El Salvador,” Barnes said.
The administration's sees the additional $60 million as a means of maintaining aid at the levels in effect last year. For this year, Congress has approved only $26 million under a continuing resolution.
The administration is weighing a variety of options for obtaining the $60 million, including the possibility of transferring that amount from aid now earmarked for other countries.
According to the senior official, Reagan’s concern stems from his perception that the Soviet Union represents a major threat to the region.
Echoing that view. Sen. Henry M. Jackson, D-Wash., “The problem is not just El Salvador. It is the region we have to be concerned about. The real problem, the strategic problem, is Mexico."
In a similar vein, Shultz testified that it would be “bad news” for American security interests if El Salvador were to fall under Soviet-Cuban influence.
Shultz, in his testimony Monday, reaffirmed his opposition to that option, declaring that this would reward a violent minority which has refused the government’s offer to lay down their arms and join the political process now under way.
The guerrillas, Shultz said, should “not be allowed to shoot their way into the government." He said the Salvadoran government deserves support for attempting to implement economic and political reforms in the face of a guerrilla movement that is “dedicated to tearing the country up.”CARPET CLEANING625-3477943 N. WALNUT
Worst dose yet of a bad winter
Storms pound California
Bv THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
Coastal storms clawed California and pounced on the Southeast today as March lived up to its lion-like reputation, arriving w ith gale-force winds and heavy rains that
caused mudslides and knocked out power to thousands of homes.
The first of a pair of Pacific storms hit California late Monda> and early today, and forecasters said the storm system could develop into the worst yet in a winter of fierce w rather for the Golden State.
H u mea ne-f Of ce winds up to 84 mph in northern California felled trees and downed power lines Monday.
The area’s waterlogged hills, soaked by a week of heavy rams, collapsed Monday onto California 101 at l^ggett, about 150 miles north of San Francisco, and along U S I near Stinson Beach in Marin County.
In San Jose, at the south end of San
Francisco Bay, resident Marty Olson said the wind lifted the metal roof off his patio, carried it over his house and dropped it onto his parked car. “My neighbor told me it looked like a flying saucer." Olson said.
The storm's winds knocked out power briefly on Monday for 50,000 Pacific Gas and Electric Co customers in Santa Clara County, company spokesmen said.
Storms in California over the weekend were blamed for five deaths, but officials reported no additional fatalities Monday.
In the Southern California enclave of Malibu, where high surf in late January and early February wrecked dozens of beachfront homes, firefighters brought in
12.000 sandbags Monday to supplement
4.000 already in store, police Capt Michael Idol said.
The National Weather Service had warned that the storm system “should not be underestimated.” But officials said
Monday’s storm didn’t produce the catastrophes of earlier storms that caused some HOO million in damages to homes, businesses, crops and public works and left 11 people dead.
A second storm was expected to arrive early Wednesday, extending the heavy rains and high winds until at least until Thursday, said National Weather Service forecaster Kent Field.
The rain was expected to turn into heavy snow in the Sierra Nevada, where 5 feet of snow had fallen in three days. Fifteen feet of snow was already on the ground at Norden. Calif., near I-ake Tahoe, as compared w ith just 5 feet at this time last year.
The 20-foot waves and 55 mph winds that pounded Santa Barbara kept Queen Elizabeth II from docking the royal yacht at Santa Barbara Harbor, where the bad weather aborted a dredging operation.
Governors to ask Reagan to cut defense spending
Prescriptions for Peace of mind:
WASHINGTON (AP) Despite President Keagan's opposition. Republican and Democratic leaders of the National Governors’ Association are supporting a resolution that demands less defense spending to help lower federal deficits.
The resolution, which the nation's governors were to vote on today, was approved by the executive coiiuiuttee Sunday Although the governors generally stick to state-related issues, supporters of the measure say the national economy has become the No. I issue because of its impact on their state economies.
If the resolution passes, it will be the first time the governors have injected themselves in the overall budget deflate Reagan told the governors at a White House meeting Monday that he sliares their loathing for deficits, which are estimated at between $100 billion and $300 billion annually for the next five years.
Rut Republican Gov James Thompson of Illinois, vice chairman of the group, said the president “took strong issue” with some of the remedies, particularly the suggestion that defense spending be scaled back
“He came out swinging on the matter of his defense position,” said Gov. Scott Matheson of Utah, the Democratic chairman of the association.
Richard S. Williamson, presidential aide for intergovernmental affairs, confirmed that the president stood fast on his defense program and also said he would oppose any changes in his tax program The governors’ resolution also looks to tax increases as a w ay to cut budget deficits.
Fiery pileup leaves 4 dead
OCALA, Fla. (AP) — A cigarette tossed by a motorist may have started a fast-burning grass fire that sent a smokescreen across an interstate highway, killing four people and injuring 27 others in a chain-readi0(1 pileup, officials said.
“I knew it was going to be bad,” said Larry Battey of Crystal l.ake, IU., who said he was driving one of the first cars to be caught in the blinding smoke Monday afternoon along Interstate 75.
“I told everyone to lay down. You could hear them piling up behind.”
Witnesses said the fire started after a motorist flicked a cigarette butt into the dry grass, according to Marion Deputy Civil Defense Director Tom Renau.
Marion County Medical Investigator Keith Gauger said gasoline tanks exploded in the crashes and two couples were burned beyond recognition after being pinned in their wrecked vehicles near the U.S. 27 interchange in northern Florida.
Two others injured in the crash were reported in critical condition early today.
A pickup truck pulling a horse trailer and a tractor-trailer toting lumber rode up onto stopped cars and crushed them. Wood spilled onto the pavement and caught fire. Five horses were released and the terrified animals bolted down the highway.
By nightfaU, police said three of the horses had been recaptured unharmed.
Chief resistance to the governors’ resolution has come from newly elected Democrats who have criticized Reagan's budget actions as unfair and favoring the rich over the poor.
Wisconsin Gov. Anthony S Earl, a Democrat, circulated a substitute resolution that was even tougher on defense spending arid more critical of Reagan’s domestic priorities. The resolution, w hich Earl said had the support of five other governors, also calls for canceling the administration's July I tax cut.
Thompson said he would continue to seek support for the general resolution among the 15 GOP governors, while Matheson said he would try to fiddle with the language to try to satisfy the Democrats who occupy 34 statehouses.
Meanwhile, Sen. Bob Dole, R-Kan., chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, and Sen. Pete Domenici. D-N.M , chairman of tile Budget Committee, said they agreed with what the governors were try mg to do.
"I agree with them on defense spending,” bole said at a separate meeting of the National Association of Counties. “We can probably do a little better with cuts in that area. ’’
Domenici also said defense spending does not need to grow by the IO percent that Reagan wants annually over the next five fiscal years.
The governors, who are holding their annual midwinter meeting, want defense spending held to a growth rate of between 3 percent and 5 percent for the 1984-68 period.
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