--This is an updated release. Original was posted Feb. 14, 2015, when the unit first arrived in theater.--
GRAFENWOEHR, Germany - The Mission Command Element (MCE) of the 4th Infantry Division (4ID) Headquarters assumed mission command responsibility of the land forces training of Operation Atlantic Resolve today, following a transfer of mission brief to U.S. Army Europe Headquarters leadership, here.
Operation Atlantic Resolve is focused on strengthening relationships and building interoperability among allies and demonstrating the United States' continued commitment to the NATO alliance.
The roughly 100 Soldiers who make up the MCE now serve as an intermediate headquarters for U.S. Army Europe under the Army's Regionally Aligned Forces concept. The 4ID, based out of Fort Carson, Colo., is the first division-level headquarters to deploy to Europe as part of the RAF concept.
Maj. Gen. Paul LaCamera, 4ID commanding general, has directed Brig. Gen. Randy George, deputy commanding general, to lead the MCE. The MCE is a staff element made up of personnel from across the division, and is tailored to provide command and control for all U.S. ground forces participating in Operation Atlantic Resolve.
"4ID's presence in Europe provides Army Europe a unique set of capabilities and greater flexibility to respond to future contingencies," said George. "Under Operation Atlantic Resolve we are improving our ability to operate alongside our allied and partner nation armies as we work and train together. Through these shared experiences we strengthen the institutional trust among our allied armies, strengthen our interoperability and demonstrate our commitment to the NATO alliance."
Since April, Army Europe has conducted continuous, enhanced multinational training and security cooperation activities with allies and partners in Europe. Currently, OAR's enhanced land force training and security cooperation activities are taking place in Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, and Poland; with plans to expand to include Romania and Bulgaria in the near future.
In addition to deploying the MCE, the 4ID will periodically send Soldiers to Europe to participate in a number of multinational exercises over the coming months, as a part of the RAF mission.