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PRESS RELEASE


Army Stretched Too Thin To Continue Surge

Aug. 20, 2007 (EIRNS)—The following release was issued today by the Lyndon LaRouche Political Action Committee (LPAC).

After nearly six years of war, the U.S. Army does not have the forces to continue the so-called "surge" beyond next Spring, Associated Press reports in a detailed analysis. The Army's 38 available combat units are either already deployed, are just returning home, or are already tapped to go to Iraq, Afghanistan or elsewhere — which leaves no fresh troops to replace the five extra brigades that the Bush Administration sent to Baghdad this year.

According to interviews and military documents reviewed by AP, the only choices facing the Pentagon, if the Administration wants to maintain higher troop levels beyond the spring of 2008, are:

  • Using National Guard units on an accelerated schedule;
  • Breaking the Pentagon's promise not to keep soldiers in Iraq for longer than 15 months; or
  • Breaking the promise to give soldiers a full year at home before sending them back to combat.

"The demand for our forces exceeds the sustainable supply," Army Chief of Staff Gen. George Casey said last week. "If the demands don't go down over time, it will become increasingly difficult for us to provide the trained and ready forces" for other missions.

There are 162,000 U.S. troops now in Iraq, the highest number since the invasion of 2003, and that number is expected to grow to 171,000 this fall.

In April, the Pentagon notified National Guard brigades in four states that they should be prepared to deploy to Iraq later this year. But AP reports that it has obtained documents showing that Guard units in five states — Indiana, Arkansas, Ohio, Oklahoma and Minnesota — are scheduled to deploy to Iraq before the end of the year, with a Guard unit from a sixth state, New York, set to be deployed to Afghanistan.