WASHINGTON -- The number of military reservists called to active duty jumped by more than 10,000 in the past week, the Pentagon said yesterday, reflecting an Army mobilization of National Guard and Reserve troops for Iraq to relieve the forces that have been there nearly a year.
Guard and Reserve troops will play a larger role in the new force, representing nearly 40 percent of the total of 110,000 troops, compared with about 20 to 25 percent of the force there now. They have been told they will spend up to 12 months in Iraq, meaning many will be on active duty for about 18 months, including a predeployment training period and a demobilization.
There are now 193,959 reservists on active duty around the world, the Pentagon said. That is the highest total since the week of July 30, when the number stood at 197,226. The number declined steadily from that point and stood at just over 154,000 in early November, according to Pentagon figures.
The number has increased by about 30,000 since early December as the Army has called up many Guard and Reserve units to prepare for their deployment to Iraq. This week the Army added 10,653 to its active-duty rolls -- the biggest weekly increase since a jump of 13,384 in early December.
Here is the breakdown by service, for the week ended yesterday:
Army: 165,847, an increase of 10,653 from a week earlier.
Marine Corps: 6,515, down from 6,742.
Air Force: 19,942, down from 20,112.
Navy: 1,491, down from 1,519.