Casey: No big deployments planned for GIs in S. Korea
May 3, 2007
YONGSAN GARRISON, South Korea — The Army’s new chief of staff said he sees no large deployments to Iraq or Afghanistan on the horizon for South Korea-based troops.
“There are no guarantees in war,” Gen. George Casey said in an interview Tuesday during his first visit to the peninsula since becoming chief of staff. But a large deployment of U.S. soldiers from South Korea “is not an option we are seriously looking at, at this time.”
In his third week on the job, Casey visited Yongsan Garrison in Seoul, where he spent time with leaders and community members from U.S. Forces Korea to solicit feedback on local concerns and to share his ideas for the direction of the Army’s ongoing transformation.
Casey has given himself 100 days to visit various Army installations worldwide and “get back in touch with the operational Army,” said Casey spokesman Lt. Col. Gary Kolb.
Included in his priorities are creating a “Campaign quality, expeditionary Army,” accelerating the Army’s effort to increase troop strength to 547,000, and making families a readiness issue.
“Two-thirds of the Army is married,” Casey said. “Families impact a soldier’s decision to stay with the Army, so it’s a readiness issue.”
To that end, he said he looks forward to working with U.S. Forces Korea commander Gen. B.B. Bell as he tries to normalize tours in South Korea and increase the number of command sponsorships for families.