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Keyword: troopstrength

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  • U.S. troops in Afghanistan outnumber troops in Iraq

    05/24/2010 10:26:42 PM PDT · by Jet Jaguar · 7 replies · 336+ views
    Stars and Stripes ^ | May 25, 2010 | Jeff Schogol
    The number of U.S. troops in Afghanistan has surpassed the number in Iraq for the first time since 2003. As of Monday, there were 94,000 U.S. troops in Afghanistan and 92,000 in Iraq, according to the Defense Department. The move occurred slightly ahead of schedule; it had been expected to take place in June. U.S. troop strength in Afghanistan is expected to reach 98,000 by August, up from about 30,000 when President Barack Obama took office. Once all the troops are in place, NATO and Afghan security forces are expected to concentrate on 121 key districts in Afghanistan, according to...
  • Obama Within Weeks of Afghan War Decision

    11/01/2009 10:05:48 AM PST · by Berlin_Freeper · 38 replies · 1,353+ views
    cbsnews.com ^ | Nov. 1, 2009 | Michelle Levi
    President Obama is within weeks of making a decision on sending additional troops to Afghanistan, Chief White House Advisor David Axelrod said on "Face the Nation" Sunday.
  • Obama Requests More Options for Troop Levels

    10/31/2009 1:56:53 AM PDT · by The Magical Mischief Tour · 113 replies · 3,494+ views
    Fox News ^ | 10/31/2009 | FOX News
    Obama Requests More Options for Troop Levels The Washington post reported two officials as saying late Friday Obama asked the Pentagon's top generals to provide him with more options for troop levels in Afghanistan. President Barack Obama grappled Friday with the costs and consequences of a long-term commitment to Afghanistan, but reached no decisions about troop levels, a top aide said, as military advisers briefed the president on an armed services already taxed by challenges around the globe. The president reviewed his options with the Joint Chiefs of Staff and made clear he wants at least one more meeting with...
  • GOP senator warns against pulling a 'Rumsfeld' [Graham on Afghanistan]

    08/09/2009 1:37:56 PM PDT · by rabscuttle385 · 27 replies · 2,482+ views
    AP ^ | 2009-08-09
    WASHINGTON — A Republican on the Senate Armed Services Committee says more troops are needed in Afghanistan and is warning that the U.S. must not 'Rumsfeld' the war.
  • Bush Announces Iraq Troop Cut

    09/09/2008 4:30:37 PM PDT · by SandRat · 8 replies · 277+ views
    FORT LESLEY J. MCNAIR, D.C., Sept. 9, 2008 – The United States will continue to reduce its troop strength in Iraq, but will increase its footprint in Afghanistan, President Bush said here today. The president accepted the recommendations of military leaders to reduce U.S. troop levels in Iraq by 8,000 through January. If security conditions continue to improve in the country, further reductions will be possible, Bush said at the National Defense University. Bush also announced plans to deploy a Marine battalion to train Afghan National Army troops in November and to send an Army brigade to Afghanistan in January....
  • Iraq says U.S. troops will leave by the end of 2011

    08/22/2008 3:20:12 AM PDT · by HAL9000 · 12 replies · 132+ views
    AFP via translation | August 22, 2008
    via translation - ALERT - The American troops out of Iraq end 2011 BAGHDAD - U.S. troops have left Iraq at the end of 2011 under the security agreement negotiated with the Americans who should be further examined by the highest authorities of Iraq, announced Friday by AFP Chief negotiators Iraqis. "At the end of 2011, American troops will withdraw from Iraq," Mohammed told al-Haj Hammoud.
  • Obama wants more troops in Afghanistan (McCain called for 3 additional combat brigades first)

    07/20/2008 2:13:28 PM PDT · by tobyhill · 23 replies · 127+ views
    Reuters ^ | 7/20/2008 | Jon Hemming
    KABUL (Reuters) - Presidential hopeful Barack Obama called the situation in Afghanistan "precarious and urgent" on Sunday and said Washington should start planning to transfer more troops there from Iraq. The Illinois Democrat spoke from Afghanistan on the CBS program "Face the Nation" after meeting privately with Afghan President Hamid Karzai on an overseas trip meant to bolster his foreign policy credentials. "We have to understand that the situation is precarious and urgent here in Afghanistan and I believe this has to be the central focus, the central front, in our battle against terrorism," Obama said.
  • Pentagon looks at cuts in Iraq, additions in Afghanistan

    07/16/2008 5:13:20 PM PDT · by MinorityRepublican · 2 replies · 69+ views
    CNN ^ | Wednesday, July 16, 2008
    WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Two top Pentagon officials said Wednesday that they expect to be able to recommend troops cuts in Iraq this fall and will try to increase troops in Afghanistan. Adm. Mike Mullen, right, and Defense Secretary Robert Gates speak at the Pentagon on Wednesday. The remarks came after U.S. soldiers were killed Sunday in the deadliest firefight in Afghanistan in recent years. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates said he had ruled out extending the deployment of U.S. forces in Afghanistan or making tours longer than 15 months, leaving few options other than shifting troops who were destined for...
  • McCain criticizes U.S. war effort in Afghanistan (It's Surge Time!)

    07/15/2008 10:33:07 AM PDT · by NormsRevenge · 16 replies · 184+ views
    Reuters on Yahoo ^ | 7/15/08 | Steve Holland
    ALBUQUERQUE, New Mexico (Reuters) - Republican presidential hopeful John McCain sharply criticized the flagging U.S. war effort in Afghanistan on Tuesday and vowed to turn it around if elected, starting with sending more U.S. troops. "That's no way to run a war," said McCain, complaining that security in Afghanistan has deteriorated and the status quo is not acceptable. McCain waded into the debate over what to do in Afghanistan, a war begun after the September 11 attacks that Democrats charge has been neglected by the Bush administration as it concentrates on Iraq. An attack on a U.S. base near the...
  • McCain Will Call for a Surge of Troops to Afghanistan

    07/15/2008 7:43:02 AM PDT · by flyfree · 17 replies · 174+ views
    NY Sun ^ | July 15, 2008
    WASHINGTON — Senator McCain will announce plans today for an Iraq-style "surge" of troops in Afghanistan. An adviser to the campaign told The New York Sun that, in a speech to be delivered in Albuquerque, N.M., the senator will call for an increase in combat troops and the creation of a special Afghanistan tsar to coordinate policy toward the country. "There will be a surge for Afghanistan. It will be moving combat troops in and applying the lessons from Iraq and the strategy that was successful in Iraq and taking that to Afghanistan," this official said.
  • We're Not Leaving ( Michael Barone on Iraq )

    07/12/2008 6:38:55 AM PDT · by kellynla · 16 replies · 177+ views
    realclearpolitics.com ^ | July 12, 2008 | Michael Barone
    Sixty years ago this month, the top story in campaign year 1948 was not the big poll lead of Republican nominee Thomas Dewey or the plight of President Harry Truman. It was the Berlin airlift. Air Force generals said that there was no way planes could ferry the 8 million pounds of food and coal Berlin would need every day. Secretary of State George Marshall and Joint Chiefs Chairman Omar Bradley, two of America's most respected generals, felt Berlin was indefensible and we should withdraw. One man disagreed. President Harry Truman, in one crucial meeting after another, said, "We're not...
  • Further cuts in U.S. forces in Iraq are likely, Petraeus says

    05/22/2008 10:30:39 AM PDT · by MNJohnnie · 2 replies · 202+ views
    LA Times ^ | 05-22-2008 | By Julian E. Barnes and Peter Spiegel,
    Gen. David H. Petraeus said he expects to recommend further cuts in the size of U.S. forces in Iraq before he gives up command in September. The military is currently cutting its forces down to 15 brigades, or about 140,000 troops. That drawdown is scheduled to be concluded by July. Last month, President Bush endorsed Petraeus' call for a 45-day pause before the troop reduction. Petraeus noted those further cuts may be small but said that he always intended to make constant reassessments of force level requirements. "My sense is that I will be able to make a recommendation at...
  • Gates Foresees Fewer Troops in Iraq in 2009

    04/11/2008 4:42:38 PM PDT · by SandRat · 2 replies · 47+ views
    WASHINGTON, April 11, 2008 – Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates said today he is confident there will be fewer U.S. troops in Iraq in 2009, but added that the drawdown process has gone somewhat more slowly than he thought it would last year. This comes as Army Gen. David H. Petraeus returns to Iraq after a week of testimony and meetings in and around the nation’s capital to begin what Gates called a “major force realignment” there. Gates and Joint Chiefs Chairman Navy Adm. Mike Mullen met with journalists at the Pentagon today. All five surge brigades are expected...
  • U.S. Troop Levels in Afghanistan Top 32,000

    04/10/2008 3:29:25 PM PDT · by tobyhill · 4 replies · 62+ views
    fox news ^ | 4/10/2008 | ap
    BAGRAM, Afghanistan — U.S. troop levels in Afghanistan now top 32,000, the highest number of American forces in the country since the 2001 U.S.-led invasion that toppled the Taliban. The rise in force levels is a response to an increasingly violent insurgency that is spreading into new parts of the country. The top American commander in Afghanistan has requested three more brigades — about 7,500 more troops — and the Pentagon has promised that more U.S. troops will be sent to Afghanistan next year. Following the 2001 ouster of the Taliban, the U.S. had fewer than 10,000 troops in the...
  • Report: Petraeus Won't Request Troop Cuts (Next Prez Gets That Job)

    03/26/2008 6:08:18 PM PDT · by Syncro · 29 replies · 577+ views
    Military.com ^ | March 26, 2008 | Stars And Stripes
    Report: Petraeus Won't Request Troop Cuts Stars and Stripes | March 26, 2008 The top U.S. military commander and top diplomat in Iraq have presented plans to President Bush that would not include further troop cutbacks after "surge" brigades are brought home this summer, according to news reports published Tuesday. The New York Times reported that -- in a secure videoconference with the Bush and the National Security Council -- Gen. David Petraeus and Ambassador Ryan C. Crocker recommended putting off troop-level decisions for several months after the departure of five extra brigades. That timeline would leave decisions on major...
  • Bush says troop cutbacks might stop (AP says bias journalist cutbacks will never happen)

    01/12/2008 11:55:09 AM PST · by tobyhill · 5 replies · 117+ views
    Yahoo ^ | 1/12/2008 | TERENCE HUNT, AP White House Correspondent
    MANAMA, Bahrain - President Bush said Saturday he is open to the possibility of slowing or stopping plans to bring home more U.S. troops from Iraq, defying domestic demands to speed the withdrawals. Updated on war developments, Bush said the U.S. presence in Iraq will outlast his presidency. Bush said any decision about troop levels "needs to be based upon success," but that there was no discussion about specific numbers when he was briefed by Gen. David Petraeus, the top U.S. commander in Iraq, and Ryan Crocker, the U.S. ambassador to Baghdad. The president was cheered by news that Iraq's...
  • Bush says no decision on troop levels

    01/12/2008 8:37:44 AM PST · by Kaslin · 2 replies · 42+ views
    Yahoo!News ^ | January 12, 2008 | Anne Gearan
    CAMP ARIFJAN, Kuwait - Facing another decision about U.S. troop levels in Iraq by spring, President Bush said Saturday it is "fine with me" if generals recommend no more reductions than those already planned to drop the force level to about 130,000.Traveling for the next few days among Sunni Arab-ruled states jittery about the rising influence and ambitions of Shiite-majority Iran, Bush used part of remarks here that were focused on Iraq to put Tehran on notice — again."Iran's role in fomenting violence has been exposed," he said as he listed successes the U.S. is helping to bring about in...
  • 40,000 troops may be home by July

    12/22/2007 12:46:24 AM PST · by JohnHuang2 · 16 replies · 55+ views
    Washington Times ^ | 12/22/07 | By Sara A. Carter
    The Pentagon expects that more than 40,000 U.S. troops will be home by July if the situation in Iraq remains stable, Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates said yesterday. Declining to cite exact troop numbers, Mr. Gates told reporters that five brigade combat teams are scheduled to be home by July. Defense officials said there are nearly 4,000 front-line troops for each plus about that number of support personnel, who are expected to redeploy as well. "The situation on the ground, I think, makes it likely that General [David H.] Petraeus will be able to decide and bring out the first...
  • U.S. Starts First Major Pullout From Iraq, Beginning With Brigade Members

    11/25/2007 3:32:20 PM PST · by neverdem · 9 replies · 225+ views
    NY Times ^ | November 25, 2007 | ALISSA J. RUBIN
    BAGHDAD, Nov. 24 — The first substantive drawdown of American troops in Iraq has begun, as the first members of a brigade in Diyala Province have started to leave, American military officials in Baghdad said Saturday. Col. David W. Sutherland of the Third Brigade Combat Team, First Cavalry Division, whose soldiers have been working in Diyala since last November, said all 5,000 of his troops would be gone by mid-December. However, because of continuing violence in Diyala, another brigade that is already in the country will take the place of the Third Brigade Combat Team. The replacement soldiers are already...
  • US Forces Withdrawing From Iraq and Democrats Prepare to Take Credit

    10/26/2007 5:07:13 PM PDT · by Starman417 · 8 replies · 123+ views
    Flopping Aces ^ | 10-26-07 | Scott Malensek
    This morning I checked my emails and newsfeeds like I do every morning. Right away one story jumped out at me. I had thought that the Democrats’ Congress had given up with their faux resolutions against the Iraq War, given up on trying to cut funding for the troops (always a half-hearted effort on their part at best), and generally given up on actually trying to end the war with a politically-driven premature evacuation. According to The Hill, “Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Carl Levin (D-Mich.) is working with a key appropriator on a strategy to halve the White House’s...
  • British Drawdown Thoroughly Discussed with U.S. Commanders in Iraq

    10/09/2007 4:19:53 PM PDT · by SandRat · 3 replies · 261+ views
    WASHINGTON, Oct. 9, 2007 – The British government’s decision to cut its forces in Iraq by half in the coming months has been thoroughly discussed with Multinational Force Iraq commanders and U.S. officials, Pentagon spokesman Bryan Whitman said here today. British Prime Minister Gordon Brown told Parliament on Oct. 8 that he would remove half of the 5,000-man British contribution in Iraq in the spring. British forces will continue to train and work with Iraqi security forces, Brown said. The British troops are based in southern Iraq around Basra, the third-largest city in Iraq after Baghdad and Mosul. Britain has...
  • Nets Thrilled by Warner Call for 5,000 Fewer Troops, But Distressed When Bush Makes It Happen

    Three weeks ago, when Republican Senator John Warner suggested a withdrawal of about 5,000 U.S. forces from Iraq by Christmas, the networks trumpeted the idea as evidence of a major “turning point” in the war. Thursday night, President Bush announced he would, in fact, lower U.S. troop levels by 5,700 by Christmas, but those same networks were dissatisfied, with NBC’s Tim Russert grumbling that the President’s idea was really “U.S. military involvement in Iraq this year, next year, and well after I leave the presidency.”
  • Petraeus, Seeing Gains in Iraq as Fragile, Is Wary of Cuts

    09/07/2007 6:54:03 AM PDT · by Turret Gunner A20 · 7 replies · 349+ views
    New York Times ^ | September 7, 2007 | By DAVID E. SANGER and DAVID S. CLOUD
    September 7, 2007 Petraeus, Seeing Gains in Iraq as Fragile, Is Wary of Cuts By DAVID E. SANGER and DAVID S. CLOUD WASHINGTON, Sept. 6 — Gen. David H. Petraeus, the top American commander in Iraq, has told President Bush that he wants to maintain heightened troop levels in Iraq well into next year to reduce the risk of military setbacks, but could accept the pullback of roughly 4,000 troops beginning in January, in part to assuage critics in Congress, according to senior administration and military officials.
  • In Strategy Shift, Gates Envisions Iraq Troop Cuts

    07/03/2007 6:53:23 PM PDT · by neverdem · 13 replies · 664+ views
    Wall Street Journal ^ | July 3, 2007 | YOCHI J. DREAZEN and GREG JAFFE
    Pullback Is Deemed Key To Forging a Consensus On Long-Haul Plans WASHINGTON -- Defense Secretary Robert Gates and some allies in the Bush administration are seeking to build bipartisan political support for a long-term U.S. presence in Iraq by moving toward withdrawing significant numbers of troops from Iraq by the end of President Bush's term. The complicating factor is how long the administration will stick with its "surge" strategy of keeping high levels of troops in Iraq to try to tamp down violence there. On this issue, the administration -- and even the military -- is deeply divided. The longer...
  • US May Reduce Forces in Iraq by Spring

    06/22/2007 4:14:53 PM PDT · by RWR8189 · 11 replies · 629+ views
    Associated Press ^ | June 22, 2007 | PAULINE JELINEK
    WASHINGTON (AP) - The U.S. may be able to reduce combat forces in Iraq by next spring if Iraq's own security forces continue to grow and improve, a senior American commander said Friday. He denied reports the U.S. is arming Sunni insurgent groups to help in the fight against al-Qaida. Lt. Gen. Raymond Odierno, the top day-to-day commander of U.S. forces in Iraq, did not predict any reductions in U.S. forces but said such redeployments may be feasible by spring. There are currently 156,000 U.S. troops in Iraq. Speaking to reporters at the Pentagon from his headquarters outside Baghdad, Odierno...
  • Number of brigades may fall, but troops to stay at 133,000

    05/30/2006 1:02:32 AM PDT · by neverdem · 6 replies · 478+ views
    The Washington Times ^ | May 30, 2006 | Rowan Scarborough
        U.S. troop levels in Iraq will likely stay around the 133,000 mark in the coming months even if an Army brigade or two is cut from the current number of 15 total combat brigades, defense officials say.     The officials said Army Gen. George Casey, the top commander in Iraq, may decide he does not need a replacement brigade for one going home. Yet the overall force level will likely stay the same because new training teams are entering the country to embed with units of the Iraq Security Force (ISF).     Gen. Casey is also periodically tapping an Army "call-forward" brigade...
  • Rumsfeld Hints Iraq Troop Levels May Rise

    03/14/2006 1:25:00 PM PST · by jmc1969 · 10 replies · 740+ views
    AP ^ | March 14 2006 | LOLITA C. BALDOR
    Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld hinted Tuesday that U.S. troop levels may increase slightly in Iraq in the coming days because of pilgrimages connected to the holiday of Ashura. His comments, while linked to the holy celebration, came as sectarian violence spiked again in Iraq, with the execution-style killings of at least 87 people, including about 29 bodies piled in a mass grave in a Baghdad neighborhood. Hundreds of people have been killed since the Feb. 22 bombing of a Shiite mosque in Samarra, creating concern that the country may be tipping toward civil war. Rumsfeld said Gen. George Casey,...
  • Troop Levels in Iraq Must be Balanced Carefully, Officials Say

    02/17/2006 8:04:28 PM PST · by SandRat · 4 replies · 303+ views
    American Forces Press Service ^ | Feb 17, 2006 | Sgt. Sara Wood, USA
    WASHINGTON, Feb. 17, 2006 – The level of U.S. forces in Iraq must be balanced so as not to create an occupying force, but to still be effective and able to maintain a secure environment, Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld told a House of Representatives committee here yesterday. "No country wants foreign forces permanently in their country; we have no desire to have our forces permanently in that country," Rumsfeld said at a hearing of the defense subcommittee of the House Appropriations Committee. "The goal is to have sufficient forces." Having too many U.S. forces in Iraq could create a...
  • Sen. Inhofe: U.S. Troops Out of Iraq by June 2007

    01/31/2006 11:53:51 AM PST · by Kaslin · 13 replies · 508+ views
    NewMax ^ | January 31, 2006 | Carl Limbacher
    Oklahoma’s Republican Sen. James M. Inhofe, second-ranking member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, told a Heritage Foundation audience Monday that the Iraqis should be able to take over country security from the Coalition forces by June of 2007. "Nobody will answer the question [of when the United States can withdraw the bulk of its forces] ... well, I’ll answer it,” Inhofe pronounced in a presentation entitled "Grading National Security.” "We have 220,000 Iraqi troops now,” the lawmaker explained. "By the end of the year, we will have 300,000. All the experts agree that it will take 10 divisions of...
  • Sufficient Troop Strength in Iraq [AP gets it wrong again]

    01/26/2006 3:38:00 PM PST · by Excuse_My_Bellicosity · 6 replies · 316+ views
    Multi-National Force, Iraq ^ | January 26, 2006 | COMBINED PRESS INFORMATION CENTER
    Release A060126h Sufficient Troop Strength in Iraq BAGHDAD, Iraq – An Associated Press story earlier today incorrectly reported that General George W. Casey, Multi-National Force Iraq commanding general, implied American forces in Iraq are “stretched.” During an interview in Diwaniyah, Iraq, General Casey was asked about the current operational tempo and if insurgents could possibly “outlast” the U.S. Army in Iraq. Having talked to the Chief of Staff of the Army only yesterday about overall troop strength and operational tempo, General Casey replied that the Army could sustain this effort for a long time. Additionally, General Casey pointed out that...
  • U.S. Troops in Iraq Decrease to Last Summer's Level

    01/26/2006 3:50:48 PM PST · by SandRat · 4 replies · 239+ views
    American Forces Press Service ^ | Jan 25, 2006 | Samantha L. Quigley
    WASHINGTON, Jan. 25, 2006 – The number of U.S. troops serving in Iraq has decreased to around 138,000, which was the level deployed there last summer, a Defense Department military spokesman said here today. "We have come back down to the troop level that we were at back in the summer of '05," said Army Lt. Col. Barry Venable. U.S. troop levels in Iraq were temporarily boosted last year from around 138,000 to about 160,000 troops to provide extra security for the Oct. 15 constitutional referendum and the Dec. 15 nationwide elections. Those extra troops "have cycled out and we're...
  • Powell: US will pull troops out this year

    01/22/2006 5:51:31 AM PST · by MadIvan · 36 replies · 1,386+ views
    The Observer ^ | January 22, 2006 | Ned Temko
    Colin Powell, who warned President Bush on the eve of the Iraq war that US forces would have to stay for the long haul after toppling Saddam, yesterday predicted that troop withdrawals would begin by the end of this year. He spoke as final results of the elections for a new Iraqi government left the Shia Muslim alliance 10 seats short of an outright parliamentary majority - boosting US and British hopes of a coalition including Sunni and Kurdish groups. Britain's ambassador to Iraq, William Patey, said after the results were announced that an 'inclusive government of national unity' would...
  • Pentagon Weighs Cutting Troops

    01/01/2006 9:21:43 AM PST · by 68skylark · 20 replies · 378+ views
    Baltimore Sun via Hartfor Courant ^ | December 21, 2005 | TOM BOWMAN
    <p>WASHINGTON -- Pentagon officials are considering cutting as many as 34,000 soldiers - the bulk of them from the National Guard - at a time when U.S. ground forces are stretched in Iraq, according to defense officials.</p> <p>The proposed cuts are part of a reduction in the growth of defense spending over the next five years ordered by the White House.</p>
  • Rumsfeld to cut troops in Iraq

    12/24/2005 12:38:32 AM PST · by Aussie Dasher · 5 replies · 368+ views
    The Washington Times ^ | 24 December 2005 | Rowan Scarborough
    Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld yesterday said that U.S. troop levels in Iraq will dip below a base force of 138,000, the first in what is expected to be a string of reductions as local security forces take on more counterinsurgency missions next year. Mr. Rumsfeld chose an audience of U.S. Marines and the town of Fallujah, where U.S. troops fought bloody street battles to capture the city, to make an announcement that could affect the 2006 congressional elections. "President Bush has authorized an adjustment in U.S. combat brigades in Iraq from 17 to 15," said Mr. Rumsfeld, who is...
  • U.S. Troop Levels in Afghanistan Slated to Drop Next Year

    12/20/2005 2:47:39 PM PST · by stocksthatgoup · 2 replies · 201+ views
    American Forces Press Service ^ | 12/20/2005 | By Gerry J. Gilmore
    WASHINGTON, Dec. 20, 2005 – The number of American troops serving in Afghanistan, currently about 19,000, is slated to decline by about 2,500 next year, a senior U.S. military officer said here Dec. 19. Improved Afghan National Army and police forces and an expanded NATO contingent are enabling the reduced American military presence, Air Force Lt. Gen. Gene Renuart, the Joint Staff's director for strategic plans and policy, told the Pentagon Channel and American Forces Press Service. "It's a good-news recognition of progress in Afghanistan, of success in our desires to build governance and improve the economies and to advance...
  • General in Iraq Expects Troop Levels to Drop

    12/17/2005 3:41:05 AM PST · by xzins · 9 replies · 445+ views
    Las Vegas Sun ^ | 17 Dec 05 | Lolita Baldor
    General in Iraq Expects Troop Levels to Drop By LOLITA C. BALDOR ASSOCIATED PRESS WASHINGTON (AP) - The top U.S. military commander in Iraq said Friday he would make recommendations in the next few weeks about troop withdrawals from Iraq, and he expects the force level will drop back to 138,000 by early February. That has been the usual number this year. Speaking from Iraq, Gen. George Casey told Pentagon reporters that by late next fall, the Iraqi military should be able to largely take the lead in the country's defense, with continued support from U.S. and coalition transition teams....
  • Iraq Force Level Assessment Is Likely, Di Rita Says

    12/12/2005 4:34:12 PM PST · by SandRat · 5 replies · 301+ views
    American Forces Press Service ^ | Dec 12, 2005 | Gerry Gilmore
    WASHINGTON, Dec. 12, 2005 – The senior U.S. military commander in Iraq will likely conduct a force-level assessment sometime after the Dec. 15 elections, a senior defense department official said here today. However, chief DoD spokesman Lawrence Di Rita cautioned Pentagon reporters that Army Gen. George W. Casey Jr., commander of Multinational Force Iraq, may not provide a recommendation for Iraq force-level changes along with his assessment. "I would expect fully that he'll come back and give an assessment of where he thinks he is," Di Rita said. "I don't know - I simply don't - whether that will include...
  • All Over but the Pullback: Nixon Did It in Vietnam. Bush Will Do It in Iraq. [delusional alert]

    12/04/2005 12:13:09 AM PST · by Hadean · 44 replies · 1,075+ views
    Washington Post ^ | Dec 4, 2005 | Jonathan Rauch
    On June 8, 1969, President Richard M. Nixon announced the withdrawal of 25,000 American troops from Vietnam. Within the next few months, he would declare that tens of thousands more were coming home. "He was reluctant to withdraw," says John Mueller, a political scientist at Ohio State University and the author of several books on war and public opinion, "but he kept being pushed by politics." Nixon recognized that, without U.S. military support, the government of South Vietnam would fall to the communist insurgency, and he believed that such a fall would represent a humiliating and costly defeat for the...
  • If victory critical in Iraq, why not more troops?

    11/30/2005 4:21:36 PM PST · by SJackson · 65 replies · 859+ views
    Tomah Journal ^ | 11-30-05
    On Nov. 18, Congress waged a passionate debate between those who believe America’s involvement in Iraq is a costly mistake and those who condemn a withdrawal of American troops as “cut and run.” Advertisement Advertise Info. Directory Absent from the withdraw vs. stay-the-course debate was any mention of a third option: more resources and more troops. Its omission reveals volumes about those who support the Iraq war and link it to the broader war on terror. America boasts the finest and best-trained soldiers in the history of warfare, but the existing force of 160,000 troops isn’t enough to track down...
  • Iraq says pullout of forces will lead to violence

    11/25/2005 9:15:48 AM PST · by FairOpinion · 26 replies · 751+ views
    Reuters ^ | Nov. 25, 2005 | Reuters
    TOKYO, Nov 25 (Reuters) - Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshiyar Zebari urged Japan on Friday to keep its troops in southern Iraq, saying an early pullout of coalition forces would lead to more violence by insurgents. Zebari said his war-torn country had made progress on improving security, but added it faced a crucial period ahead of the Dec. 15 parliamentary election. "The difficult part has gone in my view. We're very close to reaching a more stable form of government and of security," Zebari told a news conference following a meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi. "Now, any premature withdrawal...
  • Withdrawal from Iraq ? Here Is theWithdrawal from Iraq ? Here Is the Timetable

    11/25/2005 7:03:43 AM PST · by Valin · 23 replies · 1,127+ views
    Asharq Al-Awsat. ^ | 11/25/05 | Amir Taheri
    In the circles opposed to the toppling of Saddam Hussein one word is making the rounds these days: timetable. Having failed to stop the war that liberated Iraq, and with their hopes of the insurgents marching triumphant into Baghdad dashed, they are now focusing on one issue: the withdrawal of the US-led coalition forces. Some want this to happen immediately, while others are prepared to grant a few weeks or months. Those Democrat politicians in Washington, who had backed the war with as much enthusiasm as George W Bush, are now using the issue of withdrawal as a means of...
  • Pentagon Official Comments on Iraq Troop Levels

    11/23/2005 5:23:07 PM PST · by SandRat · 5 replies · 312+ views
    American Forces Press Service ^ | Nov 23, 2005 | Gerry Gilmore
    WASHINGTON, Nov. 23, 2005 – Recent news reports that say major U.S. troop reductions in Iraq may occur next year are speculative in nature, a senior Defense Department official said today. "When we have any major force adjustments, I think we've always been very good about making those decisions known to you," DoD spokesman Bryan Whitman told Pentagon reporters. The Defense Department routinely prepares for possible contingencies, Whitman said, noting such planning could include increasing or decreasing troop levels in a certain geographic area. Currently, there are more than 150,000 U.S. troops in Iraq. "The United States military looks at...
  • Don't Give Terrorists a Timetable (former Marine Commandant weighs in)

    11/22/2005 8:44:37 PM PST · by No Longer Free State · 7 replies · 360+ views
    The Washington Post ^ | 22/11/05 | P.X. Kelley (Marine Corps Commandant 1983-77)
    One of the most critical issues that members of Congress must address is the wisdom of setting a schedule for our continued presence in Iraq. In this regard, I would hope that they would look back to September 1983, when both houses of Congress held War Powers Act hearings on our presence in Beirut as part of a multinational force. I asked Congress then not to set a schedule for our withdrawal from war-torn Lebanon. I said, "If the time is too short, our enemies will wait us out; if it is too long, they will drive us out." My...
  • WP: 3 Brigades May Be Cut in Iraq Early in 2006

    11/22/2005 9:26:04 PM PST · by West Coast Conservative · 31 replies · 593+ views
    Washington Post ^ | November 23, 2005 | Bradley Graham and Robin Wright
    Barring any major surprises in Iraq, the Pentagon tentatively plans to reduce the number of U.S. forces there early next year by as many as three combat brigades, from 18 now, but to keep at least one brigade "on call" in Kuwait in case more troops are needed quickly, several senior military officers said. Pentagon authorities also have set a series of "decision points" during 2006 to consider further force cuts that, under a "moderately optimistic" scenario, would drop the total number of troops from more than 150,000 now to fewer than 100,000, including 10 combat brigades, by the end...
  • As The Iraqis Stand Up ...[Military Has It's Own Plans For Draw Down]

    11/23/2005 5:40:14 AM PST · by conservativecorner · 6 replies · 460+ views
    Captains Quarters ^ | Nov. 23, 2005 | Edward Morrissey
    The Washington Post reports that soon after the last round of Iraqi elections concludes, American commanders in Iraq plan to drop three of the 18 brigades deployed in Iraq, in favor of the burgeoning Iraqi security forces. One brigade would transfer to neighboring Kuwait as a rapid-reaction force, and the other two brigades would simply never arrive to relieve two slated to return to the United States in the first quarter of 2006: Barring any major surprises in Iraq, the Pentagon tentatively plans to reduce the number of U.S. forces there early next year by as many as three combat...
  • Pentagon discusses Iraq troop numbers

    11/23/2005 6:50:30 AM PST · by ncountylee · 3 replies · 266+ views
    UPI ^ | 11/23/2005
    WASHINGTON, Nov. 23 (UPI) -- The Pentagon has tentative plans to withdraw as many as 50,000 U.S. troops from Iraq by the end of 2006, but will keep some on standby in Kuwait. As pressure for troop withdrawal mounts both in the United States and among Iraqis, Lt. Gen. John Vines, the senior tactical commander in Iraq, told reporters his staff had looked at shrinking U.S. force levels more quickly. Officers said in a "moderately optimistic" scenario, they would drop the total number of troops from more than 150,000 now to fewer than 100,000 by the end of the year,...
  • McCain calls for 10,000 extra troops for Iraq

    11/10/2005 2:36:58 PM PST · by jmc1969 · 98 replies · 1,625+ views
    Financial Times ^ | November 10 2005 | Caroline Daniel and Guy Dinmor
    Senator John McCain on Thursday called for an immediate increase of 10,000 troops in Iraq, and said the “stakes are higher than they were in Vietnam” for US foreign policy. Conceding that there was an “undeniable sense that things are slipping” in Iraq, Mr McCain said “we need a renewed effort to win the home front. Without it we will lose this war as soundly as if we had lost on the battlefield...We must get Iraq right, as American stakes in the conflict are enormous”. Senator John Kerry has laid out an alternative strategy that would enable the US to...
  • US to cut troops to 138,000 after Iraq's election

    11/03/2005 6:25:45 PM PST · by markedmannerf · 15 replies · 400+ views
    xinhuanet ^ | 11-3-05
    WASHINGTON, Nov. 3 (Xinhuanet) -- The Pentagon said Thursday that it will scale back the troop level in Iraq to 138,000 after the country's Dec. 15 election. The plan was announced by James T. Conway, director of operations for the US Joint Chiefs of Staff at a Pentagon news conference. He said the US military will keep a reinforced level of some 160,000 soldiers through the election and then make a "fairly rapid" reduction to what has been the standard troop level of about 138,000. "I think the answer is, as soon as possible, as soon as our logistics capability...
  • We Have Enough Troops: A Soldier Explains

    10/31/2005 8:59:47 AM PST · by Valin · 8 replies · 894+ views
    Tech Central Station ^ | 10/31/05 | David Graham
    Troop strength is a recurring topic of discussion regarding our difficulties in Iraq. Unfortunately, what began as cries of "not enough troops" from left-leaning political partisans eventually grew into a choir that included more credible individuals. Among them were people very familiar with the situation in Iraq: Anthony Zinni, Senator Joe Biden, Colin Powell, and Frederick Kagan, to name a few. It is disappointing that intelligent people who are well versed in military affairs are capable of seeing a forest but fail to recognize that it is composed of trees, with some trees bearing more fruit than others. To put...
  • Lawmakers Warn Against Troop Decreases

    08/14/2005 3:13:11 PM PDT · by jmc1969 · 16 replies · 374+ views
    AP ^ | JENNIFER C. KERR
    WASHINGTON _ As U.S. officials pressed Iraqis to finish work on a new constitution, a leading Democratic lawmaker said Sunday the Bush administration is downgrading expectations for a flourishing Middle East democracy signaling a possible exit strategy. "They have squandered about every opportunity to get it right," said Sen. Joseph Biden of Delaware. "The bottom line is they are significantly lowering expectations." Biden, ranking Democrat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, also told NBC's "Meet the Press" he has seen no evidence that the Sunni-led insurgency in Iraq is losing steam as a political force an assertion made recently by...