President Bush says he plans to increase the number of U. S. military forces to deal with the long-term fight against terrorism.
Mr. Bush told the Washington Post Tuesday he has instructed the new Defense Secretary Donald Gates to discuss increases with military commanders and report back to him. Mr. Bush says he is inclined to believe the United States needs to increase the size of the Army and Marines. He says the war against terror is going to last for a while and the United States is going to need a military able to sustain the fight.
Analysts say such an expansion would take years to accomplish and would have little effect on the immediate future in Iraq. General Peter Schoonmaker, the chief of staff of the U.S. Army, warned Congress last week that the current number of active-duty Army troops will not be able to handle the strain of current war-zone rotations.