Army general: ‘No reason to doubt’
Obama’s arms story in CNN debate
says he knows of a platoon sent to
with a shortage of personnel and equipment.
WASHINGTON – Army chief of staff Gen. George Casey, testifying on troop strain before the Senate Armed Forces Committee Tuesday, said there is “no reason to doubt” ’s military shortage story during CNN’s debate in , last week.
“You know, I’ve heard from an Army captain who was the head of a rifle platoon – supposed to have 39 men in a rifle platoon. Ended up being sent to with 24 because 15 of those soldiers had been sent to ,” Obama told CNN moderator .
“And as a consequence, they didn’t have enough ammunition, they didn’t have enough Humvees. They were actually capturing weapons, because it was easier to get weapons than it was for them to get properly equipped by our current commander in chief,” he added.
War supporters have challenged the story, but Casey said he had “no reason to doubt what it is the captain says.”
“We acknowledged and we all worked together to correct the deficiencies with equipment that we saw during that period, not only but in Iraq,” he said in response to the question posed by Republican Sen. Lindsay Graham, a longtime supporter of presidential candidate .
Casey told the general Obama had not contacted Army officials about the story before using it in the debate.
Casey testified before the along with Peter Geren, the secretary of the Army, on how the strain overseas could affect troop levels in the near future.
Casey said the goal is to reduce combat tours from 15 months to 12 months by midsummer.