The Army gave bayonets to a historic unit to attach to their rifles in addition to live ammunition as the Pentagon equipped soldiers to deal with protests in Washington, D.C., Bloomberg reports. Defense Secretary Mark Esper and General Mark Milley wrote, “The Old Guard Commander directed the issue of bayonets in scabbards and limited amounts of ammunition to be maintained in pouches” in preparing nearly 800 soldiers to respond. The 3rd Infantry Regiment, also called the Army’s “Old Guard” since it is the oldest active-duty unit in the branch, did not deploy to quell the protests. The unit, garrisoned at Fort Meyer near Washington, D.C., is best known for providing security at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. President Donald Trump has faced criticism for saying he would use the U.S. military to shut down the protests and for ordering the tear gassing of protesters in advance of a photo op, including from Esper and Milley.
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