Fort Lewis Strykers

The 4th Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division at Fort Lewis will deploy to Iraq in April, at least a month earlier than expected, Fort Lewis officials said Thursday.

The new deployment schedule was announced Thursday afternoon by the Department of Defense as a result of President Bush's order to send an additional 21,500 U.S. troops to Iraq.

Officials expect a minimum 12-month deployment, said Maj. James Brown, executive officer for the 4th Brigade.