Some of President Reagan's critics have portrayed him as befuddled and confused about the intricacies of the Iranian arms deal. We're not so sure. Consider, for example, the TOW (tube-launched, optically tracked, wire- guided) anti-tank missiles that were included in the shipments to Iran. At a Nov. 19 news conference Mr. Reagan called TOW a shoulder-fired weapon and seemed skeptical when, several questions later, a reporter tried to correct him by pointing out that TOWs are fired from vehicles.
Well, it turns out they don't work very well when mounted on vehicles. U.S. Army officials disclosed this week that firing TOWs from jeeps and other light vehicles, and also from helicopters and ground-based tripods, has been halted pending investigation of two recent accidents in which TOW missile casings exploded. One soldier was hospitalized with injuries. There was no word on whether the Army is going to take the hint from the commander-in- chief and find out if firing from the shoulder improves performance.