Monday, January 15, 2007

Pace: Iraq soldiers to get Baghdad bonus for showing up

The U.S. says that Iraqi units failed to show up in September, contributing to the failure of that security drive. This time, a large part of Iraqi army forces will be Kurds deploying from the north, who may also be reluctant to leave their home area.

WASHINGTON, Jan. 15 (UPI) -- The Iraqi government is giving a cash bonus to Iraqi soldiers who follow orders and deploy to Baghdad next month.

Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Peter Pace told the Senate Armed Services Committee Friday the government is offering $150 per month for soldiers who are deployed to Baghdad. They will get $150 up front, and then when they are redeployed back to their normal area of operations, they will get the balance of the money.

"It's not about money, but their government is in fact trying to provide some assistance to the families in a way that would help those soldiers leave their families and go do the job their government wants them to do," Pace said.

The Iraqi government has committed to having nine brigades to Baghdad, each of which will have a discreet district for which they are responsible. Those brigades will be teamed with an American battalion.

There are currently 42,000 Iraqi security forces and 24,000 U.S. troops in Baghdad. The Iraqi government has promised to send three additional brigades by mid-February to Baghdad, an additional of 8,000 troops.

Read the rest at UPI

Related Link:
General Thurman hard-pressed for Iraqi troops in Baghdad, wants 3,000 more (09/22/06)