According to officials, President George W. Bush will make an announcement saying that Army units heading to war after Aug.1 will serve only 12-month tours instead of the current 15-month tours.
President Bush is planning on making the announcement later today and he will announce that Army units heading into war after Aug.1 will serve only 12-month tours.
Unfortunately officials say that the measure will only apply to soldiers going to war after Aug.1 and not the soldiers who are currently serving and Iraq, Afghanistan or other war zones but if security shows any improvement than that measure might apply to them.
Army Gen. David H. Petraeus, Bush's top military commander in Iraq, recommended to Bush that troop cuts should be paused after July and the President will include his endorsement of that pause in his address.
As of now there are 160,000 troops in Iraq and that number will drop down to about 140,000 by the end of July. Many military leaders have said that 15-month tours put way too much stress on soldiers and their families.
Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates and Navy Adm. Michael G. Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff will answer questions about the tour shortage after the President makes his speech.
This new plan will only apply mostly to Army units and under the plan soldiers will be deployed for one year and then rest at home for 12 months and than retrain for the next tour.
The new plan applies mostly to Army units because the National Guard, Air force, Navy and Marine units typically serve shorter deployments.