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Gen. George Casey, right, the top U.S. general in Iraq, talks to Maj. Gen. James D. Thurman, commander of U.S. forces in Baghdad, during a visit to a northern Baghdad neighborhood. Thurman has been nominated to take the helm of V Corps.
Gen. George Casey, right, the top U.S. general in Iraq, talks to Maj. Gen. James D. Thurman, commander of U.S. forces in Baghdad, during a visit to a northern Baghdad neighborhood. Thurman has been nominated to take the helm of V Corps. (Elena Becatoros / AP)

Maj. Gen. James D. Thurman, the 4th Infantry Division commander currently in Baghdad, has been nominated to take the helm of V Corps, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld announced Monday.

Information about when Thurman would take over V Corps in Heidelberg, Germany, was not available Tuesday.

“We just found out this morning, too, that the secretary of defense has announced the appointment,” said Connie Summers, a V Corps spokeswoman.

A spokesman for Thurman in Baghdad, said the general will stay with the 4th ID in Iraq at least until it redeploys.

“We expect to start redeploying end of November through December,” said. Lt. Col. Jonathan B. Withington, Multi-National Division-Baghdad and 4th Infantry Division spokesman.

In addition to commanding the 4th ID, Thurman is also commander of Multi-National Division-Baghdad, which consists of more than 69,000 U.S. and coalition military, and Iraqi army and police forces. He assumed command of his Baghdad post in January.

Before taking command of V Corps, a three-star command, Thurman will have to undergo Senate confirmation. Thurman has also been recommended for promotion to lieutenant general.

Thurman’s nomination comes some three weeks after Lt. Gen. Ricardo Sanchez relinquished command of the unit. Sanchez served as V Corps commander for more than three years — longer than any previous commanding general. He retires in November.

Lt. Gen. Peter Chiarelli led the V Corps headquarters into Iraq at the beginning of the year, under the name Task Force Victory, to take over command of Multi-National Corps-Iraq. Chiarelli was never officially assigned to V Corps, Summers said.

Maj. Gen. Fred D. Robinson Jr., 1st Armored Division commander, will continue to serve as V Corps interim commander, a position he assumed Sept. 6, the day Sanchez stepped down.

In Iraq, Thurman has recently overseen Operation Together Forward, a program aimed at reining in sectarian violence in the Iraqi capital.

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