Army: Top priority is soldiers, families

Jan. 27, 2011 at 10:56 AM
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CAMP VICTORY, Iraq, Jan. 27 (UPI) -- U.S. Army Secretary John McHugh says the Army's top priority is to take care of soldiers and their families.

McHugh, speaking at Camp Victory, Iraq, met with soldiers at an open-forum luncheon Wednesday, reported Operation New Dawn, the official Web site for soldiers stationed in Iraq.

Camp Victory is outside Baghdad.

"The purpose of my trip was to speak to the troops and make sure we are doing the right things for them," McHugh said. "We want to make sure we put the soldiers and their families first."

McHugh said the Army's biggest hurdle is to reduce the stress placed on deployed soldiers, and that he wants to increase the amount of time between deployments.

"The most important thing we can do is give people more dwell time at home. We are working very hard to get two years of dwell time for every year of deployment," McHugh said.

McHugh told soldiers their current mission is just as important as it has been at any time during the war. It was McHugh's 16th trip to Iraq.

"I don't want anybody to think this is the forgotten theater," said McHugh. "Do your duty, do your jobs and continue to look out for each other. This is the moment of success and you're the folks that we are relying upon to make it happen."

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