Military Deployments Likely to Last Through June 2008

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FORT HOOD, Texas (AP) - A top Army commander said troops deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan will continue to face 15-month deployments until at least next June.

General Richard Cody is the Army vice chief of staff. He told The Associated Press during a visit to Fort Hood Tuesday that commanders are assessing the situation on the ground now.

He says it will take until at least June to shrink average deployments
back to 12 months while maintaining the 158,000 troop levels now
deployed in the regions.

At every meeting with troops and commanders at the Central Texas Army post, Cody faced questions about the extended tours of duty.

He sought to reassure them that the extended deployments are a temporary measure aimed at getting enough soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan while giving them at least a year to rest and train between deployments.

Fort Hood's 4th Infantry Division is preparing to return to Iraq late this year.

Many members of the division are on their second and third deployments to Iraq.