U.S. Abrams Main Battle Tanks and Bradley Fighting Vehicles are back in the Baltics as the 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division begin their second rotation in support of Operation Atlantic Resolve.
As the regionally allocated force for U.S. Army Europe, the soldiers of 1st Brigade are scheduled to take over the Army’s OAR mission in Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia and Poland from soldiers of the 173rd Airborne Brigade Oct. 26.
“The deployment of our combined arms battalion, which includes armor crewman and mechanized infantry, is an example of our nation’s continued commitment to the collective security of our NATO allies,” said Lt. Col. Johnny Evans, the 3rd Battalion, 69th Armor Regiment commander.
Since April 2014, Army Europe has led the U.S. military’s land forces efforts by conducting continuous, enhanced multinational training and security cooperation activities with allies and partners in eastern Europe.
“The soldiers of the ‘Speed and Power’ battalion are excited to train with our allies and look forward to showcasing our unit’s combat capabilities,” said Evans.
The tanks and Bradleys are a part of the European Activity Set of equipment. The EAS is a brigade-sized group of vehicles pre-positioned in Germany to outfit U.S. Army units when they rotate into theater for training. The EAS fleet includes vehicle systems and equipment that would outfit a U.S. Army Armored Brigade Combat Team, such as tanks, infantry fighting vehicles, artillery pieces, engineer equipment, and a standard array of tracked and wheeled support systems.
“The ability to fall in on a pre-positioned fleet reduces the considerable logistical requirements of transporting an organization’s equipment from the U.S.,” said Evans.
As the regionally allocated force for Europe, 1st Brigade is responsible for serving as the European Rotational Force and the NATO Response Force. U.S. Army Europe continues to lead the Army in integration of RAF by leveraging multiple rotational units.