Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld says that upcoming deployments and re-deployments of troops to Iraq represent a “spike” in the operational tempo rather than a “plateau.” He said he did not expect to have 100,000 or 120,000 troops permanently deployed in a single country. To relieve the OpTempo, he said, the Defense Department is training more Iraqi security forces which now number close to 200,000, and turning to increasing international military participation. The department also is rebalancing the active force with the Guard and Reserve to reduce reliance on involuntary mobilization. And DoD is moving forward with its plan to civilianize thousands of military jobs, which would free military personnel for military tasks. Rumsfeld said the department already has used its emergency powers to temporarily increase end strength of U.S. troops by some 36,000.
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