By ROBERT BURNS, AP
BAGHDAD – In a move that could portend a strategy change, the commander of U.S. forces insaid Sunday he has proposed reducing his troop levels and shifting next year to missions focused less on direct combat.
Army Maj. Gen. Benjamin Mixon told The Associated Press that if current trends hold, he would like to begin this troop reduction and change in mission in Nineva province, where he said Iraqi army forces already are operating nearly independently. He has proposed shifting the province to Iraqi government control as early as August.
Nineva’s capital is, the country’s third largest city.