General to Call for Pullbacks —But Troops Will Stick in Iraq

Iraqis could prove their mettle in safer areas
By Peter Fearon,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 15, 2007 3:05 AM CDT
U.S. soldiers from Alpha Company, 2nd Battalion, 3rd Infantry Regiment, 3rd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, Second Infantry Division prepare to search homes in the Dora neighborhood of Baghdad, Iraq Thursday,...   (Associated Press)
camera-icon View 2 more images

(Newser) – Iraq's US military commander Gen. David Petraeus is expected next month to recommend a pullback of US troops from safer areas—but likely won't bring any troops home, the Los Angeles Times reports. The move is intended to demonstrate Iraqi capabilities to secure less volatile areas without US combat support.

American soldiers could either be redeployed to more violent regions or form a reserve force, Petraeus will likely recommend in his September report to Congress. The tactic is seen as a way to respond to pressure for progress without drawing down US troops.  The general is expected to push for maintaining troop levels for at least 6 months more, according to White House sources.