US orders 82nd Airborne brigade to Kuwait

Defense Secretary Robert Gates has signed orders that will send the 82nd Airborne Division's 2nd Brigade to Kuwait, shortly after the new year, senior defense officials said Tuesday. The decision to send the unit was first reported earlier this month. The soldiers are expected to be deployed into Iraq early next year, and the move could be part of a short-term surge of troops to the battlefront to quell the current violence. The 82nd Airborne unit - which would include as many as 3,300 soldiers, will replace the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit, which had served as the reserve force based in Kuwait, but has been deployed into Iraq.