Today the Defense Department announced the U.S. will be sending additional troops to Iraq. The News American has also learned from a Pentagon source that Defense Department is expected to send even more troops to Iraq in January 2017. The 2017 deployment will be composed of soldiers from the 82nd Airborne.
The majority of the troops being immediately deployed will be Special Forces, along with some military instructors and aviation maintenance personnel. The Defense Department said these troops will play a more active role in the fight against ISIS. The newly deployed troops will be located closer to the battlefield than previously deployed troops, in order to give advice on combat strategy to Iraqi commanders.
The decision to send the additional troops came after a meeting President Barack Obama had with Iraqi leaders and Pentagon officials assessing the Iraqi Army’s war on ISIS. The meetings determined that Iraqi commanders need more guidance during actual battles, which means putting American troops on the battle field to give advice to the commanders. Until now, military personnel have been working in tactical operations centers located a safe distant away from where the fighting has been taking place.
The newly deployed soldiers will bring the number of U.S. forces in Iraq to over 4,000.