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Excuse me but, can we have our howitzers back?

Notice to ski resorts: The Army wants its howitzers back

RENO, Nev. The U.S. military is demanding the return of five howitzers that two Sierra Nevada ski resorts use to prevent avalanches, saying it needs the guns for the fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Alpine Meadows and Mammoth Mountain received the artillery pieces on loan from the Army and began using them last year to fire rounds into mountainsides and knock snow loose.

But the ski resorts received word earlier this month that the Army's Tank Automotive and Armaments Command at the Rock Island Arsenal in Illinois needs the howitzers back immediately.

"I need to have them back in the troops' hands within 60 to 90 days," said Don Bowen, the Army command's team leader in charge of the howitzers. "It's a very short timeframe to get them serviceable and back into the theater in southwest Asia. Afghanistan-Iraq is the immediate concern."


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