The new Iraq tours will be almost that long:
All active-duty Army troops now in Iraq or Afghanistan or headed to either country will serve 15-month tours of duty, up from the usual 12-month tours, effective immediately, the Pentagon announced today.
Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates called the change "a difficult and necessary interim step" and said it would at least give soldiers and their families more predictability than they have now.
The change will not affect National Guard or Army Reserve troops, who will continue to serve 12-month tours. Nor will it affect the Marine Corps, whose members are deployed overseas for seven months and come home for six months, Gen. Peter Pace, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said.
"I realize this decision will ask a lot of American troops and their families," Mr. Gates said at a Pentagon news briefing, where he and General Pace expressed appreciation yet again for the valor and sacrifice of American fighting men and women.
It does indeed ask a lot of American troops and their families. Getting prepared for more bodybags, perhaps.
I hate this stupid war without any proper strategy behind it, or at least any strategy that would make sense. I hate that the sacrifices "we" are asked to make consist of putting stupid bumper stickers on our SUVs, while the soldiers are being stretched and stretched closer and closer to the breaking point.
And towards what end? To destroy Islamic terrorists? Last I read they've been bombing in Morocco and Algeria.