Deployed Troops Leave Shortage for Veterans Day Parades

Even as thousands of U.S. troops are stationed in war zones abroad plans for Veterans Day parades across the country are being scaled back or scrapped.

The problem: Not enough troops, tanks and HumVees to wow the patriotic crowds.

A spokesman for the Veterans of Foreign Wars says a lot of troops that normally would be available are on duty.

The military has more than 131-thousand troops deployed in Iraq, in addition to troops serving in Afghanistan. War equipment usually available from state armories and military bases has been shipped out with troops.

Some cities are depending on boy scouts and other non-military marchers to fill the gaps. In California, several small towns have joined the bigger San Jose parade.

But not every city is having troubles. A big crowd is expected in Jacksonville, Florida, where there are two large Naval bases and a large number of retired military personnel.

Copyright 2003 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.