Army Chief: More US Ground Troops Headed to Iraq

Odierno: 1,600 Troops 'a Good Start'

Speaking today to reporters, Army Chief Gen. Ray Odierno termed the 1,600 US ground troops presently in Iraq a “good start,” but said that more will be heading to the country in the near future.

We are going to increase a little bit,” Odierno said, though he declined to offer any details on the date or size of the new deployments. The Army chief also said he wouldn’t rule out having US special forces fighters embedded in Iraqi ground forces during combat.

“I don’t rule anything out. I don’t ever rule anything out personally,” he added. Gen. Odierno had said earlier this week that the war was going to require the use of ground troops, though Pentagon officials later backtracked on the comment.

Odierno went on to warn that the air war was getting tougher and ISIS is more difficult to target because they are “hiding” in cities now instead of being out in the open and “clearly identifiable.”

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.