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Camp Pendleton Marines Await Orders

Audio

Aired 12/3/09

Marines at Camp Pendleton are waiting to find out exactly how many of them will be deploying earlier than expected to Afghanistan.

Marines at Camp Pendleton are waiting to find out exactly how many of them will be deploying earlier than expected to Afghanistan.

The First Marine Expeditionary Brigade at Camp Pendleton has been preparing for some months to deploy to Afghanistan early in the New Year. Until this week the official word was that no Marines were expected to leave before Christmas.

But Lieutenant Colonel Chris Hughes of 1 MEF, the 1st Marine Expeditionary Force, says they’ve been reading the tea leaves and they’re ready for more rapid deployments.

“There’s a churn right now within the Pentagon to generate deployment orders, that will actually go to individual military units around the country. That process is ongoing.” Hughes said. “ We’ve got 45,000 Marines with I MEF, we’ll obviously be affected.”

Hughes says there will be at least 9,000 Marines from Camp Pendleton in Afghanistan by the middle of next year.

The First Marine Expeditionary Brigade includes a command unit, plus aviation and logistics units, as well as ground forces.

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