Here’s a fun thought for you sure to ease any troubling thoughts about our military capabilities…
Army Plans a Temporary Force Increase (from the New York Times)
WASHINGTON, Jan. 28 — The United States Army, strained by operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, will increase its forces by 30,000 through emergency authority that it expects to last four years, the Army’s chief of staff, Gen. Peter Schoomaker, told Congress on Wednesday.
But General Schoomaker, testifying before the House Armed Services Committee, rejected calls from lawmakers for a permanent increase in forces, saying it would undermine efforts to streamline and modernize the Army.
“Right now, I’ve been given the authority by the secretary of defense to grow the Army by 30,000 people within the authority he has under the emergency powers,” General Schoomaker said. He said the authority from Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld was to last for four years.
The general also told lawmakers that the Army was drawing up plans for additional force rotations to keep large numbers of troops in Iraq into 2006.
This comes as the Army launches its biggest rotation of troops since World War II that will reduce forces in Iraq by this spring to 105,000 from about 130,000.
The Army is already about 11,000 soldiers over the 482,000 troop limit authorized by Congress under the emergency provision the Pentagon invoked, largely through orders that block soldiers from leaving or retiring and through re-enlistment incentives.
A bit of a funny twist for Rumsfeld, since he has recently gone on record as being adamantly opposed to any force increase in the armed services..