Oklahoma Governor Orders Arming of National Guard Troops
Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin on Friday ordered full-time National Guard troops be armed. The directive came following the Islamist terror attack on unarmed military offices in Chattanooga, Tennessee on Thursday that initially killed four Marines. A fifth serviceman, Navy Petty Officer Randall Smith, died from the attack early Saturday.
Fallin’s order coincided with a similar order by Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson also issued Friday. Fallin and Hutchinson also ordered flags be flown at half-staff in honor of the slain servicemen.
At the federal level, Army chief of staff Gen. Ray Odierno said Friday recruiting centers would not have security guards posted nor would recruiters be allowed to be armed. The Marine Corps reportedly told recruiters to not wear their uniforms to work.
“OKLAHOMA CITY – Governor Mary Fallin today authorized Oklahoma’s adjutant general, Maj. Gen. Robbie L. Asher, to arm full-time personnel at installations like the military facilities that were attacked Thursday in Chattanooga, Tenn.
““Four unarmed Marines were killed in what appears to be a domestic terrorist attack,” said Fallin. “It is painful enough when we lose members of our armed forces when they are sent in harm’s way, but it is unfathomable that they should be vulnerable for attack in our own communities. For that reason, I want to make sure that our National Guardsmen are authorized to arm themselves at our military facilities.”
“Fallin issued an executive order allowing Asher to arm certain full-time personnel in military installations throughout Oklahoma with weaponry as he deems necessary “to adequately provide for security of the facilities and their occupants.” Such installations shall include, but not be limited to, military recruiting offices.
“In another executive order, the governor instructed that all American and Oklahoma flags on state property be flown at half-staff through 8 a.m. Monday in honor of the four Marines killed.
““This attack is a horrible tragedy for our country and especially those in the state of Tennessee,” Fallin said. “Our thoughts and prayers go out to the families and friends of those who were killed.””