First Published: 2006-09-25

 
US looks for ways to send more troops to Iraq
 

US Army and Marine Corps are trying to figure out how to keep the equivalent of two extra divisions, or 40,000 troops, in Iraq.

 

Middle East Online

They need more support to deal with rising insurgency

WASHINGTON - The US Army and Marine Corps are looking for ways to send more combat units into the Iraq rotation pool and are considering accelerating the pace of deployments for some brigades in order to keep more than 140,000 troops in the country through at least the spring of 2007, The Washington Times reported Monday.

Citing unnamed Pentagon officials, the newspaper reported that instead of planning to draw down 30,000 soldiers and Marines this year, the two services are now trying to figure out how to keep the equivalent of two extra divisions, or 40,000 troops, in Iraq.

Currently, Army units deploy for about a year, then spend one year at their home base before going back to Iraq or Afghanistan. Under these rules, the number of troops was to drop to 100,000 by next year.

The report said the Army has met a request by Central Command head General John Abizaid for more forces in the rotation pool by delaying the departure of a Stryker armored vehicle brigade to Alaska and by calling in a fast-reaction brigade combat team from Kuwait.

But a longer-term solution may require the Army to look at adding more units to the rotation mix, according to The Times.

"It may accelerate the pace of deployments, or it may mean looking at calling up additional units," the paper quotes a Pentagon official as saying.

That option may become reality in November, when the Pentagon is expected to identify units that will go to Iraq next year, the report said.

The Marine Corps, which patrols restive Anbar Province west of Baghdad, rotates two expeditionary forces every seven months.

The increased demand for troops comes at a time when military analysts say it is nearly stressed to the breaking point, The Times said.

Non-deployed combat brigades are experiencing low readiness ratings due mostly to a lack of usable weapons and equipment, the paper noted.

The wear and tear in Iraq is ruining M1A1 tanks, Bradley fighting vehicles, Humvee vehicles and other equipment at such a fast pace that the Army has neither the money nor the industrial base to replace them, according to The Times.

 

Iraq dismisses US call for Iranian-backed militias to 'go home'

Opposition calls on Iraqi Kurd leader to step down

IS ‘executed’ 116 suspected of Syria regime collaboration

Israel arrests 51 Palestinians for ‘terror-related’ crimes

Greening the Camps brings food and hope to refugees

UNICEF says 1,100 children malnourished in Syria’s Ghouta

UN says Yemen children in desperate need of aid

Orthodox Jews block Jerusalem entrance in protest

Six terror suspects arrested in Morocco

EU announces 106 million euros in aid for Sudan

French judges to rule on whether 'Jihad' is acceptable name

Saudi Aramco chief confirms IPO despite doubts

Lack of accountability hinders governing in Morocco, analysts say

Sudan editor convicted after Bashirs accused of graft

Russia’s Lavrov urges Iraq-Kurd dialogue

Kurds to arrest 11 Iraqis in response to similar Baghdad move

Car bomb attack kills 9 in south Yemen military base

Rouhani boasts about Iran’s greatness in region

Iraq unrest highlights long-standing political divisions

Bahrain temporarily frees female activist

Egypt court sentences 11 people to death for 'terrorism'

Israel police arrest 15 over anti Jewish-Arab dating campaign

Tillerson woos Gulf allies to curb Iran influence

Abadi, Sadr meet in Jordan

No clear US strategy in Syria after Raqqa liberation

Tillerson pushes to undercut Iran at landmark Saudi, Iraq meeting

Gulf share values plummet

US-backed forces capture key Syria oil field

More than half of Austrians vote for anti-immigration party

Washington sees potential Hezbollah threat in the US

UN ends Libya talks with no progress made

Cairo killing sparks security concerns among Copts

Iraq PM arrives in Saudi to upgrade ties

35 Egyptian police killed in Islamist ambush

Morocco recalls Algeria envoy over 'hashish money' jibe

Ceremony marks 75 years since WWII Battle of El Alamein

Somalia attack death toll rises to 358

Long road ahead for families of jailed Morocco protesters

How Raqa recapture affects complex Syrian war

Israel hits Syrian artillery after Golan fire

Germany advances Israel submarine deal after corruption holdup

Bashir Gemayel's killer convicted, 35 years later

SDF hails 'historic victory' against IS in Raqa

Hamas delegation visits Iran

Turkish court orders release of teacher on hunger strike