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Tuesday, August 17, 2004

New York Times > Bush Tells Veterans of Plan to Redeploy G.I.'s Worldwide


CINCINNATI, Aug. 16 - President Bush said Monday that the Pentagon would withdraw 60,000 to 70,000 troops during the next decade from Europe and Asia in the biggest realignment of the United States military since the end of the cold war.

In a speech to a convention of the Veterans of Foreign Wars in the political combat zone of Ohio, the president said the redeployment would create a more flexible military that would be better positioned to fight terrorism. Many of the details of the plan had been reported in early June, after the proposal was circulated among European and Asian allies.

Some troops will be brought home, Mr. Bush said, while others will be rotated through locations closer to the terrorist threat - principally the Middle East and Central Asia, as well as Southeast Asia. The administration already is striking deals for greater access rights and temporary basing privileges in nations closer to locations believed to be terrorist headquarters and havens.

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