Entries in Kuwait (3)


US to Maintain Military Presence in Gulf Region, Pentagon Says

US [dot] Army [dot] mil(WASHINGTON) -- A Pentagon spokesman on Monday stated that the U.S. will continue to station troops in the Gulf region and that nothing has been finalized about future troop levels with partners in the region, but added that he could not confirm that plans are already underway to boost troop levels in Kuwait.

Pentagon Press Secretary George Little said Monday, “Our goal at the end of the day is to promote stability in the Middle East and we expect to continue to have strong mil-to-mil relationships with countries in the region to include Iraq, to include Kuwait, to include others.”

The announcement followed a New York Times report this weekend that the U.S. has plans underway to bolster its military presence in the Gulf region after the troop pullout from Iraq.

The most likely area for the U.S. to place additional troops in the region would be Kuwait, where the U.S. already has 23,000 troops supporting military operations in Iraq. Little said he was unaware of any formal plan that had been presented to Defense Secretary Leon Panetta or the White House regarding troop levels in Kuwait.

During several town hall meetings in Asia last week, Panetta repeated the message that the U.S. was committed to the region.

“At the same time, for Iran and anybody else who has any other ideas, let me make clear that the United States maintains 40,000 troops in that region, 23,000 in Kuwait, and numbers of others in countries throughout that region” he said.

“One thing’s for sure, we’re going to maintain a presence in the Gulf region,” said Little. "We have enduring commitments in that part of the world, and those commitments remain a priority.”

Defense Department spokesman Capt. John Kirby also noted Monday that the U.S. has had a commitment to the region since World War II, though he said it was not directed at one particular threat.

“We anticipate we’re going to continue to have a force presence in the Middle East going forward, but what it looks like, where it all is, we’re still working our way through that,” he said.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Pentagon Begins Shifting Troops as Afghan Drawdown Nears

U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Gary A. Witte, 300th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment(WASHINGTON) -- President Obama has not yet announced the size of the troop reduction to meet a July deadline for the start of a drawdown in Afghanistan, but the Pentagon has already begun paring U.S. forces there.

The Pentagon announced Thursday that 800 Army National Guard troops scheduled to be deployed to Afghanistan will instead be shifted to Kuwait next month in support of the mission in Iraq.

There are some 100,000 U.S. troops in Afghanistan, and the president is under pressure from lawmakers from both sides of the aisle to make significant reductions, especially in the wake of the death of Osama bin Laden.  There are also some 47,000 troops from other countries participating in the NATO-led coalition in Afghanistan.

Outgoing Defense Secretary Robert Gates said he approved Gen. David Petraeus’ recommendation that the troops be diverted to Kuwait.  Gates also told reporters that the cost of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan will drop from $160 billion to $120 billion in the upcoming fiscal year, which begins on Oct. 1.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Kuwait Parliamentary Committee Rejects Ban on Bikinis

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(MANAMA, Kuwait) - A committee in Kuwait has ruled that a motion to ban bikinis is unconstitutional, reports

The motion would have meant a one-year prison sentence and hefty fine for those caught wearing bikinis, clothes with deep cleavage and other revealing items at beaches.

Members of the Development and Reform Bloc and parliament member Khalid Al Sultan submitted the motion after they say they had noticed women on the beaches were not abiding by public standards of morality.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio