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Longer stay for Troops?

Superlative

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Pentagon Weighs Troop Extension for Iraq


The Pentagon is thinking about lengthening tours of duty for all active-duty Army units in Iraq to 15 months instead of 12 as the military struggles to supply enough troops for the conflict.

Defense Secretary Robert Gates could make a decision on that proposal and others in the coming days, said a defense official speaking on condition of anonymity because the plan has not been approved.

It is the third option to become known in the last several days in what has become a drumbeat of unsettling news for a military strained by two wars over the last five years.

Officials on Monday said some 13,000 National Guard troops were receiving orders alerting them to prepare for possible deployment to Iraq — meaning a second tour for several thousand of them. Officials said a final decision to deploy the four infantry combat brigades later this year will be based on conditions on the ground and named specific Guard units based in Arkansas, Indiana, Oklahoma and Ohio.

The Pentagon said the Guard units would serve as replacement forces in the regular troop rotation for the war, and would not be connected to the controversial military buildup that was ordered by President Bush and which officials say is starting to show some success in curbing violence in Baghdad.

Word has also emerged that Defense Department officials were considering a plan to extend by up to four months the tours of duty for as many as 15,000 U.S. troops already in Iraq as a way to maintain the buildup past the summer.

There are currently 145,000 U.S. troops in Iraq, and when the buildup is completed by June, there would be more than 160,000, officials are calculating.


Defense Department spokesman Bryan Whitman said Wednesday that with the way the rotation schedule is laid out now, the force size would begin to fall after August unless some action is taken — sending some troops earlier than expected or keeping some beyond their planned homecomings.
He declined to confirm details of any of the options under consideration.
"What you're hearing from various people are different ideas that are being looked at," Whitman said.

He also said no decision has been made to maintain the buildup after August, but others have said that they expect or want to keep the level that high through the year and possibly until February.

"There are any number of planning scenarios that the department is looking at that would address things such as how long you would maintain" the buildup, Whitman said.

"Some would keep the ... force level essentially the same," he said. "Some scenarios have it going up, some scenarios have it going down."
Meanwhile, an Iraqi government spokesman, Ali al-Dabbagh, cautioned against "premature" withdrawal of U.S. troops, saying that would create an opportunity for Iran and the al-Qaida terror network to make inroads in Iraq.

Al-Dabbagh, asked at news conference at the United States Institute for Peace in Washington about congressional efforts to force a pullout of U.S. combat troops, said, "They should finish the job."

He said no Iraqi wants U.S. forces to stay a long time, but "there is a job to be done." With Iraq's approval he said some troops could be safely withdrawn later this year or early in 2008.

But, he said, "the premature withdrawal of American troops will create a vacuum" and "Iran is a danger and al-Qaida is a danger."


http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/n/a/2007/04/11/national/w065136D71.DTL
 
OP
Superlative

Superlative

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US soldiers to stay longer in Iraq

The Pentagon has said that US soldiers will serve up to 15 months in Iraq and Afghanistan instead of one year, showing more signs of the strain the wars have taken on the military.

"Our forces are stretched, there's no question about that," Robert Gates, the defence secretary, said on Wednesday.
He said the move would allow the military to sustain for a year the increased troop level in Iraq ordered by the president in January.

Critics say the decision was a blow to the military, the troops and their families.
Ike Skelton, a Democrat who chairs the Armed Services Committee in the House of Representatives, said: "This new policy will be an additional burden to an already overstretched army.

Negative impact

"I think this will have a chilling effect on recruiting, retention and readiness. We also must not underestimate the enormous negative impact this will have on army families."

Gates admitted that "this decision will ask a lot of our army troops and their families".

The policy is effective immediately and also applies to units already in the region, he said.

There are about 145,000 US troops in Iraq and 25,000 in Afghanistan.

As part of George Bush's plan, the military is the midst of boosting its Iraq force by 28,000 combat and support troops.

The Pentagon's goal for active duty army troops is that they spend two years at home for every year deployed, but it has not been able to meet that target in recent years.

At the moment, army units average about a year at home for every year deployed, Pentagon officials say.

In an effort to tackle the strains on the military, Gates has ordered an increase in the size of both the army and the Marine Corps.


http://english.aljazeera.net/NR/exeres/74212C8D-AEA1-47E1-B0D3-1FB74C8488ED.htm
 

Louie

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of course the chimp doesn't care and neither do any of the republicans. they have nothing at stake here, no family etc.
the chimp is a disgrace.:eusa_snooty: :eusa_snooty: :eusa_snooty:
 

90K

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what has this got to do with the chimp? If we had a active draft this very situation could have happened. Nobody said being in the Armed Forces was going to be a cake walk. I got extended many times while I was in the service during the cold war. It suckes but you move on because higher authority said we had to stay on station either weeks or months before being relieved.
 

maineman

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what has this got to do with the chimp? If we had a active draft this very situation could have happened. Nobody said being in the Armed Forces was going to be a cake walk. I got extended many times while I was in the service during the cold war. It suckes but you move on because higher authority said we had to stay on station either weeks or months before being relieved.

saying that this sort of thing happens all the time does not mean that it has nothing to do with the chimp.

Are you really suggesting that the adminstration's flawed foreign policy - which got us INTO this dumbass war... and the inept, incompetent, tonedeaf execution of that policy by the Bush administration is not the proximate cause for the troop extensions??????
 

Gunny

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saying that this sort of thing happens all the time does not mean that it has nothing to do with the chimp.

Are you really suggesting that the adminstration's flawed foreign policy - which got us INTO this dumbass war... and the inept, incompetent, tonedeaf execution of that policy by the Bush administration is not the proximate cause for the troop extensions??????

I don't see your point. I got extended during Clinton's administration twice. Was that HIS fault?

Troops get extended all the time. It goes with the job. These aren't draftees. Nobody made them join.

Yeah it sucks. Been there done that. So do a lot of things.
 

90K

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I don't see your point. I got extended during Clinton's administration twice. Was that HIS fault?

Troops get extended all the time. It goes with the job. These aren't draftees. Nobody made them join.

Yeah it sucks. Been there done that. So do a lot of things.

Thank you! that is what I'm saying things happen. Maine I can't believe you'd bite on this like you can't believe it is happening. Vietnam was a democratic war and guys got extended. fresh souls from the draft and all.
This decision sure wasn't a morale booster but it is part of the territory.
 

maineman

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Thank you! that is what I'm saying things happen. Maine I can't believe you'd bite on this like you can't believe it is happening. Vietnam was a democratic war and guys got extended. fresh souls from the draft and all.
This decision sure wasn't a morale booster but it is part of the territory.


I am not "biting" on anything. This is not some partisan argument of mine...I am fully aware that the military moves to the beat of the administration regardless of party..I realize the Vietnam was a war that, until '68, was my party's problem...I am aware of the LIE that was the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution.... I am not suggesting that Bush had something to do with the extensions because he is a republican, but because his foreign policy is inept. I would be just as anti-Iraq war if a democrat had started it.
 

jasendorf

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It was funny that the President stated at an American Legion hall on Tuesday that the Dems were going to cause the DoD to lengthen the troops' stays in the war zones only for the DoD to make that announcement on Wednesday.
 

Louie

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here's hoping some of our favorite war supporters will be uping the irons for service. trade places with some of these poor people over there...
:eusa_pray: :eusa_pray: :eusa_pray:
 

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