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US Army to Deploy 2,100 Soldiers to Iraq this Fall

U.S. soldiers from the 82nd Airborne Division fire artillery in support of Iraqi forces fighting Islamic State militants from their base east of Mosul on Monday, April 17, 2017. (AP Photo/Maya Alleruzzo)
U.S. soldiers from the 82nd Airborne Division fire artillery in support of Iraqi forces fighting Islamic State militants from their base east of Mosul on Monday, April 17, 2017. (AP Photo/Maya Alleruzzo)

The U.S. Army announced Thursday that 2,100 soldiers from the 10th Mountain Division (Light Infantry) will deploy to Iraq this fall.

The soldiers from 3rd Infantry Brigade Combat Team, based in at Fort Polk in Louisiana will replace the 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division, in a regular rotation of forces in support of Operation Inherent Resolve, according to an Army press release.

"During the last several months, the Patriots have worked hard and completed multiple training events to include a Joint Readiness Training Center rotation in preparation for this important mission," said Maj. Gen. Walter E. Piatt, commander of the 10th Mountain Division. "I am extremely confident and proud of the entire 3rd Brigade Team."

Third Brigade will be the first brigade-sized unit to deploy under the Associated Units Pilot Program. As part of the Army Total Force, 3rd Brigade has served with the 36th Infantry Division, Texas Army National Guard since March 2016, according to the release.

"With the enhanced integration of active/reserve components, we're building a better and stronger team that will enable us to fight our nation's wars," said Maj. Gen. S. Lee Henry, commanding general of the 36th Infantry Division, Texas Army National Guard. "We wish the 3rd Brigade well and a safe return to their families."

The Army announced the launch of new pilot program in March 2016. The pilot is designed to team up certain active, National Guard and Reserve units so they can train together before they deploy.

Currently, the U.S. has about 500 troops, mostly Special Forces, in Syria and more than 5,000 in Iraq in train, assist and advisory roles as part of the military operation against the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, or ISIS.

President Donald Trump went to the Pentagon Thursday for briefings on ISIS and Afghanistan. Army Gen. John Nicholson, commander of U.S. Forces-Afghanistan and the NATO Resolute Support mission, has a long-standing request to deploy 3,000-5,000 more American service members to Afghanistan, in addition to the roughly 8,400 currently in country.

-- Richard Sisk contributed to this report.

-- Matthew Cox can be reached at matthew.cox@military.com.

Related Topics

Headlines Army Deployment Global Hot Spots Iraq Matthew Cox

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