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Troop Levels in the Afghan and Iraq Wars, FY2001-FY2012: Cost and Other Potential Issues
Amy Belasco (au)
In Feb. and March 2009, the Obama Admin. announced its plans to increase troop levels in Afghanistan and decrease troop levels in Iraq. In Afghanistan, 30,000 more troops are deploying this year while in Iraq, troops will gradually decline to 35,000 to 50,000 by Aug. 31, 2011 with all troops to be out of Iraq by Dec. 31, 2011. The most commonly cited measure of troop strength is “Boots on the Ground” or the number of troops located in Afghanistan and in Iraq. Based on ave. monthly Boots on the Ground figures, the number of troops in Afghanistan and Iraq increased from 5,200 in FY2002 to a peak of 187,900 in FY2008 primarily because of increases in Iraq beginning with the invasion in March 2003. In FY2009, total troop strength is expected to remain the same as planned increases in Afghanistan offset declines in Iraq. By FY2012, overall troop strength for the two wars is likely to decline to 67,500 when the withdrawal from Iraq is expected to be complete. Contents of this Congressional Research Service (CRS) report: (I) Introduction: Obama Admin. Plans for Afghanistan and Iraq; (II) Wide Range in Deployed Troop Strengths in DOD Sources; (III) In-Country Troop Strength: FY2002-FY2012; (IV) Cost Implications of Changes in Troop Strength: FY2009-FY2012; (V) Ways to Measure Troop Levels for the Afghan and Iraq Wars; (VI) Trends in Troop Levels From FY2002-FY2008 Using Five Alternative Sources; (VII) Service Roles and Readiness Concerns. Figures and tables.
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