The Department of Defense announced today the deployment of two additional units to Afghanistan. A Marine Air-Ground Task Force (MAGTF) that could have up to approximately 2,000 Marines will deploy to Afghanistan in November 2008 in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. The MAGTF is composed of a headquarters and ground combat, aviation and logistics elements from units across the Marine Corps. The 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division, from Ft. Drum, N.Y., will deploy approximately 3,700 soldiers to Afghanistan in January 2009 to increase the capabilities of the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF). These units were previously scheduled to deploy to Iraq.
Upon the recommendation of commanders on the ground, the Secretary of Defense approved this request, which will increase the level of forces and military capability for NATO-ISAF and aid in the training and development of the Afghan National Security Forces.
The United States continues to be NATO-ISAF’s largest troop contributor, and remains committed to leading the offensive in counter-terrorism operations in Afghanistan, training and equipping the Afghan national security forces and assisting with reconstruction. Force levels in Afghanistan are conditions-based and will be determined in consultation with the Afghan government and NATO.
DoD will continue to announce major unit deployments. For additional information on the Marine Air-Ground Task Force, contact Marine Corps Public Affairs at (703) 614-4309. For additional information on 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division, contact Army Public Affairs at (703) 692-2000.