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Army recruiting Korean linguists

WASHINGTON — Not surprisingly, the U.S. Army is
hard-pressed to recruit Arabic translators to help
intelligence officers interrogate the thousands of
Iraqi soldiers captured during the war.

But the Army is also looking for linguists fluent in
Korean and Indonesian dialects, WorldNetDaily has

Bush has named North Korea, which last week for the
first time admitted possessing nuclear arms, as part
of the so-called “axis of evil.” The communist state
is also on the State Department’s terrorist blacklist.

In his televised address last night aboard the USS
Abraham Lincoln, Bush warned that any regime that
harbors terrorists and develops weapons of mass
destruction “will be confronted” by the U.S.

Indonesia, home to some al-Qaida operatives, earlier
this year was added to a Justice Department list of
Muslim countries whose visitors will be fingerprinted
and monitored as part of an anti-terrorist tracking

“Individuals with proficiency in Arabic, Turkish and
Kurdish (Sorani, Kurmanci and Bedini) are needed to
perform interpretation and translation duties,” said
the recruitment notice recently posted on the Army’s
internal web board.

The posting went on to say: “Additional languages may
be required in the future.”

“Individuals with skills in Korean, Filipino, Tagalog,
Tausag, Cebuano, Ilocan and Ilonggo are also
encouraged to apply so that your information and
expression of interest is on file,” said the notice,
which was posted on Army Knowledge Online, a
password-access-only portal for active Army, reserve
and National Guard personnel.

The posting lists Lynne McCann, an Army intelligence
official, as point of contact, and is titled: “Seeking
Arab Speakers Among Army’s Civilian Workforce for
Reimbursable Detail to Army Positions in Support of
Operation Iraqi Freedom and Other CONOPS, (concepts of

The shortage of Arabic-speaking interrogators in the
military has become a serious issue during Operation
Iraqi Freedom. U.S. intelligence still needs to
question thousands of POWs and displaced Iraqis about
the whereabouts of regime leaders, including ousted
president Saddam Hussein, and possible weapons of mass

A PERSCOM, or U.S. Total Army Personnel, official
recently estimated the Army would need about 850
Arabic-speaking interrogators to get the job done. Yet
the Army has only about 70 Arabic-speaking
interrogators (and oddly enough, not all have been
deployed to the Iraqi theater of operations).

“The situation for linguists is so desperate that
CENTCOM (U.S. Central Command) personnel are trying to
get Kuwaiti soldiers to act as interpreters,” which
raises loyalties issues, a U.S. intelligence official
told WorldNetDaily.

Many linguists working for Army intelligence require
classified clearance of Top Secret/Sensitive
Compartmented Information. Personal background
investigations have slowed the recruiting process.

The Army also has decided to contract out for
linguists. Worldwide Language Resources, for one,
charges the government a minimum $80,000 per
contractor for linguist support, informed military
sources say.

The U.S. intelligence official, who wished to go
unnamed, said recruitment could get expensive, since
Iraqi regime change “is slotted for 10 years.”

Phone calls to Army headquarters here were not
immediately returned.