VICENZA, Italy (Jan. 5, 2016) -- U.S. Army Europe's 173rd Airborne Brigade, alongside more than 2,200 participants from six NATO countries, will participate in Exercise Allied Spirit IV at the Army's Hohenfels Training Area in southeastern Germany, Jan. 10 - Feb. 5.

The exercise is unique in its ability to provide a hands-on laboratory for NATO training and communication. In the NATO-combined exercise, Italy's Garibaldi Brigade will command the brigade headquarters for the first time.

Allied Spirit IV will build on the lessons learned from previous exercises and help participating units better refine their tactics, techniques and procedures when operating and communicating in a multinational environment. With a different NATO nation serving as the lead brigade during each rotation, Allied Spirit expands the capabilities of NATO forces in Europe.

The 173rd will demonstrate its ability to integrate fires, logistics and engineering abilities within multinational forces. The 173rd Airborne Brigade's Support Battalion, 54th Brigade Engineer Battalion, and 4th Battalion, 319th Airborne Field Artillery Regiment will utilize Allied Spirit to validate each of their perspective battalion's battle drills and mission command with its allies.

The 173rd Airborne Brigade is the U.S. Army's Contingency Response Force in Europe, providing rapid forces to the United States European, Africa and Germany. The Brigade routinely trains alongside NATO allies and partners to build interoperability and strengthen the alliance.