A National Guard reservist who lost his bid for a court order to block his deployment to Saudi Arabia was left behind anyway when his unit was sent to the Middle East, officials said Friday.
Sgt. Michael R. Ange remained at Fort Lee, Va., to undergo medical tests when his Army National Guard unit, the 1450th Transport Company, was deployed to the Persian Gulf on Wednesday, said base spokeswoman Joy Whitmore.A federal judge in Washington on Tuesday rejected Ange's bid for a temporary restraining order, which the reservist sought to block his deployment on grounds that President Bush lacked congressional authority to wage war against Iraq.
Ange, a former Beaufort County, N.C., police officer, is now a student at Appalachian State University in Boone, N.C. He also claims that he is medically unfit for military service because of knee, leg and foot problems as well as an ulcer.
Ange claims the Army began proceedings to discharge him because of his medical condition long before his reserve unit was activated last month.
Whitmore said the decision to keep Ange at Fort Lee was in no way a concession by the Army of its legal right to ship the soldier to the Persian Gulf.
Ange, 26, challenged the president's ability to send troops to the Middle East without either notifying Congress under the 1973 War Powers Act or obtaining a declaration of war as spelled out in the Constitution.