Approximately 8,000 troops from two different U.S. Army armored units are gearing up to deploy around the world soon, the military announced on Friday.
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About 4,000 soldiers from the 2nd Armored Brigade Combat Team (2nd ABCT), 1st Infantry Division at Fort Riley, Kansas are set to deploy to Europe in support of Operation Atlantic Resolve. Under Operation Atlantic Resolve, the U.S. has sent troops to Europe to bolster the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) posture.
Operation Atlantic Resolve began in April of 2014 after Russian forces annexed the Crimean Peninsula and fighting began between Ukrainian government forces and pro-Russian separatists in Ukraine’s eastern Donbas region.
The 2nd ABCT is rotating into Europe to replace the 3rd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division from Fort Carson, Colo.
U.S. Army Armored Brigade Combat Teams use M1 Abrams Tanks, M2 Bradley infantry fighting vehicles (IFVs) and armored personnel carriers.
“I’m incredibly proud of the Dagger Brigade, and our Soldiers are excited to train and build interoperability with our NATO allies and partners,” said Col. Bryan M. Harris, who commands the 2nd ABCT, 1st Infantry Division. “The 1st Infantry Division has a tremendous history in Europe, and the Dagger Brigade is ready to continue that legacy.”
The U.S. has stepped up its presence in Europe in response to Russia’s broader invasion of Ukraine in February. As of June, there were more than 100,000 U.S. troops present across parts of Europe.
Around 4,000 additional troops from 2nd Stryker Brigade Combat Team (2nd SBCT), 2nd Infantry Division are also preparing to deploy from Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash. to South Korea. The troops from the 2nd SBCT, 2nd Infantry Division will replace 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, 1st Armored Division from Fort Bliss, Texas.
Stryker Brigade Combat Teams use eight-wheeled Stryker armored vehicles.
“The Lancer Brigade is proud to be selected as the first Stryker Brigade Combat Team to deploy to the Republic of Korea as a Korea Rotational Force,” said Col. Chad M. Roehrman, who commands the 2nd SBCT. “By design, we are equipped to rapidly deploy around the globe to fight and win in key or restrictive terrain – hills, mountains, valleys and urban environments alongside our partner nations. Following the decision to change [Korea Rotational Forces] from armored brigades to Stryker brigades, we are fully prepared to assume the mission from 1st ABCT, 1st Armored Division, in support of the ironclad commitment to the alliance.”
The Army did not specify the exact deployment dates for these two Brigade Combat Teams. The Mercury reported the troops deploying to Europe from Fort Riley will deploy in a series of flights in the next 90 days but said exact dates were withheld for security reasons.