Pentagon: Iraqi Troop Movements Seen as Training, not a Threat
A movement of Republican Guard troops into the desert west of Baghdad appears to be related to the Iraqi military's annual training cycle and does not pose a threat to its neighbors, the Pentagon said Tuesday.
A Pentagon spokesman said the US military has arrived at that assessment after closely watching the Iraqi troop movements over the past two or three weeks.
"There's still a lot of Iraq to the west of where the forces are located," Rear Admiral Craig Quigley said.
He and other Pentagon officials said the troops from the Republican Guard's crack Hammurabi Division lack essential elements of logistics support that would be needed to launch an attack.
No aircraft have been moved to back up the force -- another sign that the purpose of the deployment is not offensive, he said.
"So we very much think that it is training-related, as part of their annual training cycle," he said – WASHINGTON (AFP)
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