News Summary July 22, 2008
Today's News Round-up
British forces in Iraq will undergo a "fundamental change of mission" at the beginning of next year, as troop numbers reduce. The U.S. troop "surge" in Iraq that President George W. Bush ordered last year has ended after the last of five additional combat brigades left the country. U.S. Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama traveled to Anbar province on Tuesday to meet Sunni Arab tribal leaders. There are far fewer attacks on Iraq truck convoys carrying supplies for rebuilding projects now than in previous years, U.S. military officials say. Iraq's government welcomed Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama on Monday with word that it apparently shares his hope that U.S. combat forces could leave by 2010. Blackwater Worldwide, the company that unwittingly became a catchall brand name for security contractors in Iraq, wants to shift its business away from security. Security developments in Iraq on Monday.
U.S.-led coalition and Afghan troops clashed with and called in airstrikes on Taliban militants in western Afghanistan, killing and wounding more than 25 insurgents. Barack Obama, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, said today that U.S. combat troops should be shifted to Afghanistan from Iraq. Security developments in Afghanistan on Tuesday.
The administration will likely move to reduce the U.S. force by perhaps another combat brigade, or roughly 3,000-4,000 soldiers, toward the end of the year according to the AP. Soldiers who are physically or mentally ailing can wait two months to a year before the Army acts to medically discharge them or return them to their units, according to a House investigation. The House Veterans Affairs Committee has passed a pile of legislation; a collection of health and benefits bills that lawmakers said will improve the quality of life of veterans and their families.
Other Military News
Defense Secretary Robert Gates wants to know why his military uses private contractors for combat and security training, and how widespread the practice is. Even as women distinguish themselves in battle alongside men, they're fighting off sexual assault and harassment. Disabled veterans and others with mobility issues should be accommodated in all circumstances, whether they use a Segway or a wheelchair. The Corps doesn't need as many people in 2009, but it's offering good money for the ones it wants. Far from the combat zones, the strains and separations of no-end-in-sight wars are taking an ever-growing toll on military families despite the armed services' earnest efforts to help.
Posted by IAVA Staff on July 22
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