Rumsfeld alludes to the Army having enough members, yet the one study shows differently and head general in Iraq states the Army is "stretched".
We have enough just not enough in Iraq, or we don't have enough overall including Iraq?
Top U.S. General Says Army 'Stretched'
By NICK WADHAMS
Associated Press Writer
DIWANIYAH, Iraq (AP) -- The top U.S. general in Iraq acknowledged Thursday that American forces in this country are "stretched," but he said he will only recommend withdrawals based on operational needs.
Gen. George Casey told reporters he had discussed the issue with Gen. Peter J. Schoomaker on Wednesday and that the Army chief of staff believes he can still sustain the mission in Iraq.
"The forces are stretched ... and I don't think there's any question of that," Casey said. "But the Army has been for the last several years going through a modernization strategy that will produce more units and more ready units."
He reiterated he would only recommend reductions in the more than 130,000-strong U.S. military presence in Iraq based on the situation on the ground.
On Tuesday, The Associated Press reported that an unreleased study conducted for the Pentagon said the Army was being overextended because of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and may not be able to retain and recruit enough troops to defeat the insurgency in Iraq.
A day later, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld disputed that, asserting that "the force is not broken."
Casey spoke after attending a ceremony in which Polish troops transferred leadership of the south-central region of Iraq to Iraqi forces, the first such handover since the war began in 2003. He rejected the idea that early troop withdrawals came because of strain on the military.
"That's not true, and the recommendation to begin the reduction of forces came from me based on our strategy here in Iraq," Casey said. "I made my decision based on operational reasons and I'll continue to do that. As I've said all along, I will ask for what I need to accomplish this mission."
The Army is fighting a war on two fronts while at the same time completely reorganizing its force structure. That has never been done before in modern times, and of course until this transition is completed we will be a little "stretched" That is one reason why the Army still does 1 year tours while the USMC does 6 months and the AF 4 month. Once the transition is complete we will be able to much more effectivley project force and utilize manpower.
Stretched? Sure. Hell there is a war on. Broken? Not hardly.
We're fine, but if we get dragged into North Korea or Iran while still mucking about in Iraq and Afghanistan, it could get ugly. Nothing to panic about though, George Bush isn't going to draft your unborn children like CNN says.
We're also trying to rebuild what we've taken over, which takes more manpower than just blowing the shit out of it.
If we had just wanted to destroy Iraq's Military prowess, we'd have been gone years ago. But we wanted to rebuild the country, too.
If there was a SERIOUS conflict (Say, full scale war with China), we'd probably have no choice but to pull out and let Iraq fend for itself. But short of that, all our committments do is limit our options elsewhere. We could take out Iran, NK, etc, but an occupation and rebuilding of one of those countries is probably beyond our capabilities, manpower-wise, without seriously enlarging the military, or using effectively all of the NG and reserve components for the forseeable future.
If our armed forces were did not have enough manpower and were stretched to it's limits, every rouge state would be running amuck. We can still keep the wolves from the door and they know it.