A new Pentagon review of U.S. defense strategy would add thousands
of troops skilled in fighting terrorists and insurgents to the ranks of
the elite Special Operations Forces, The Washington Post reported on
Citing U.S. officials and military analysts familiar
with the Pentagon’s Quadrennial Defense Review, or QDR, the report said
the plan would increase the number of Special Operations Forces to the
highest level since the Vietnam War.
The strategy also would add
billions of dollars to the budget of the U.S. Special Operations
Command over the next five years, the report said, citing the officials
and analysts who spoke on condition of anonymity.
said one of the largest gains would be in Army Special Forces, or Green
Berets, who operate in 12-member “A-teams.”
The officials and
analysts were cited as saying that the Special Forces would expand from
15 to 20 active-duty battalions, creating about 90 more A-teams to
deploy to regions considered vulnerable to terrorist or extremists
influences, the newspaper reported.
Pentagon spokesman Bryan
Whitman declined to discuss details of the review but confirmed that
bolstering Special Operations Forces was “a concept the QDR has
identified as important,” the newspaper said.
The QDR report will be sent to the White House and Congress in February.