EUCOM News Release: ABCT Arrival

USEUCOM General: “America’s commitment to Europe is Rock Solid”

 

BREMERHAVEN, Germany – U.S. European Command Deputy Commander Lt. Gen. Tim Ray welcomed the arrival of 3rd Brigade of the 4th Infantry Division here Jan. 8, 2017 demonstrating U.S. commitment to Europe and as a deterrent in light of Russia’s intervention in Ukraine.

Deployed from Fort Carson, Colo., the 4,000 Soldiers of the Armored Brigade Combat Team join a recently increased land, sea and air presence in the region, said General Ray.

“I can assure you, this [ABCT] does not stand alone—it is integrated and combined with forces and other equipment in space, cyberspace, the air, land and sea, with our Allies and partners,” he said.  “A joint persistent rotational presence of American land, sea and air is in the region as a show of support to our Allies and in response to Russia’s actions in the Ukraine.”

General Ray referred to America’s commitment in Europe as “rock solid.”  He also said, “Let me be very clear, this is one part of our efforts to deter Russian aggression, ensure the territorial integrity of our Allies, and maintain a Europe that is whole, free, prosperous and at peace.”

Operation Atlantic Resolve was designed to reassure NATO allies and partners in the region.  General Ray said the arrival of the ABCT was just one aspect of America’s commitment to the region.

“We are invested…from infrastructure upgrades across the continent to airfields and ranges, we’re also prepositioning supplies and equipment, and exercising with our Allies and partners,” he said. “We will also increase the scope and complexity of many exercises in our portfolio focusing on joint interoperability, missile defense and crisis response operations.”

The arrival of the 3rd ABCT starts back-to-back rotations of U.S. troops and equipment in the region.

After the equipment arrives at the port, it will move by rail, commercial line haul and military convoy to Poland where it will be dispersed across seven locations in Eastern Europe for training and exercises with European allies.

“We will unload and move nearly 2,400 pieces of equipment from Bremerhaven to training sites throughout Europe,” said U.S. Army Maj. Gen. Duane Gamble, 21st Theater Sustainment Command commander.  “That equipment includes tanks, armored fighting vehicles, artillery, trucks, and containers– everything needed to equip and maintain the brigade. Most of it will move by rail, which will require 37 trains and 1,040 rail cars.”

General Ray closed with remarks to the media by stating: “[The ABCT] provides one flexible and responsive option for deterrence.  Make no mistake, the United States stands solidly with our European Allies.”

Lt. Gen. Tim Ray, U.S. European Command comments: (As Prepared)

  • On behalf of the U.S. European Command Commander, General Curtis Scaparrotti, I would like to thank you for coming out here to see the United States’ commitment to Operation Atlantic Resolve and our commitment to Europe.
  • I’d also like to thank our German Ally and all those that had a role in the logistics network as we move our military equipment from Bremerhaven to Poland. The infrastructure in Western Europe is one of the keys to the Alliance’s success in ensuring deterrence.
  • Although General Scaparrotti was unable to attend, please know that the European Command is committed to ensuring regional responsiveness and security with the very capable equipment you see here today. I can assure you, this equipment does not stand alone—it is integrated and combined with forces and other equipment in space, cyberspace, the air and sea, with our allies and partners.
  • With this equipment stands a joint persistent rotational presence of American land, sea and air presence in the region, especially in Central and Eastern Europe as a show of support to our Allies and in response to Russia’s actions in the Ukraine.
  • The deployment of this 4,000-person-battle-ready Armored Brigade Combat Team is just one aspect of the United States’ pledge to demonstrate our rock-solid commitment to Europe.
  • Let me be very clear, this is one part of our efforts to deter Russian aggression, ensure the territorial integrity of our Allies and maintain a Europe that is whole, free, prosperous, and at peace.
  • We are invested. From infrastructure upgrades across the continent to airfields and ranges, we’re also prepositioning supplies and equipment, and exercising with our Allies and partners.  We will also increase the scope and complexity of many exercises in our portfolio focusing on joint interoperability, missile defense and crisis response operations.
  • Since the end of the Cold War, United States forces were postured in Europe for assurance focusing on crisis management, training and enhancing our military to military relationships. We had time to bring our forces to readiness and respond to crisis; that may not be the case today. European security is a global interest and is absolutely essential to American security.
  • These rotational forces and the equipment you see here today provide one flexible and responsive option for deterrence. Make no mistake, the United States stands solidly with our European Allies.
  • S. European Command is in transition. The strategic environment is changing rapidly across Europe; from Russia’s military operations the Ukraine to the migrant flow from Syria and now to radicalism as evidenced by the December Berlin attack; our almost 70,000 service members in Europe are focused on these dynamic changes.
  • Europe has a modern, robust infrastructure which is vital to ensuring a collective defense of Europe. These efforts show commitment, capacity and the capability of our Allies.  I cannot think of another person more ready, and motivated to ensuring this deployment happens.  I will now turn this over to General McGuire for his remarks…

 

NOTE: Operational Atlantic Resolve is a bilateral security commitment; reporters should not assume it’s a part of NATO and their efforts.

 

U.S. European Command is one of the United States’ two forward-deployed Geographical Combatant Commands whose area of focus covers almost one-fifth of the planet, including all of Europe, large portions of Asia, parts of the Middle East and the Arctic and Atlantic Oceans.  The command is responsible for military relations with NATO and 51 countries with a total population of close to a billion people.  The command has nearly 70,000 deployed and permanent party joint service members and almost 100,000 military family members living in Europe.