Iraq Tours to Cut by 3 Months This Summer
Top Army general plans to return to yearlong stints
By Laurel Jorgensen,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 20, 2008 10:34 AM CST
Army Chief of Staff Gen. George Casey discusses the state of the Army while testifying on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, Nov. 15, 2007, before the Senate Armed Services Committee, in this file...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – American soldiers deployed to Iraq this summer will likely serve shorter tours, the AP reports. Soldiers at war today are serving 15 months and coming home for a year before going back to Iraq for another tour. War tours are expected to be shortened to 12 months for units leaving in early August, said the Army's top general.

The number of US combat brigades in Iraq is dropping—20 were deployed in the country for most of last year, but only 15 will likely be left by July. The general said he is “fairly comfortable” that 12-month tours will be possible even if troop reductions continue as planned. He hopes to eventually shorten tours to nine months.