US sends more troops to Iraq
The United States is sending additional 12,000 troops to Iraq in order to beef up security ahead of national elections, officials said Wednesday.
Brig. Gen. David Rodriquez, deputy operations director of the Joint Staff, told reporters that this move would increase the size of the American force in Iraq from 138,000 today to about 150,000 by January 2005.
That is the highest number of U.S. troops in Iraq since the invasion, he said, according to The AP. By May 2003, when President Bush stated major combat operations over, there were about 148,000 U.S. troops in Iraq, he said.
Military officials have said repeatedly in recent weeks that they were considering whether more US soldiers would be required to provide sufficient security before Iraqis vote.