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US Military Personnel in Gulf Surges to More Than 100,000 - 2003-02-05


U.S. military personnel and equipment are flowing into the Gulf region as the prospect of war with Iraq appears to grow.

Pentagon sources say the number of U.S. military personnel in and around the Gulf has now surged over the 110,000 mark.

The latest additions to the buildup include a contingent of F-117 stealth fighters, the same aircraft used for attacks on Baghdad on the opening night of the 1991 Gulf war, plus another aircraft carrier battle group, the third now in position to strike Iraq.

Pentagon sources say a fourth carrier group has completed pre-deployment training in the Caribbean and is now headed for the Mediterranean where it will join the buildup.

While most of the units consist of regular, active duty forces, the number of reservists being mobilized is also growing. Nearly 17,000 more have been activated since last week, bringing the total to over 110,000.

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