WROCLAW, Poland - When it comes to strategic planning for a deployment, there are several different factors that need to be considered: open space for training, living quarters for personnel, hygienic facilities, and even the transportation of equipment to and from the site. Everything must be planned out and accounted for in order for the mission to be a successful one.
Leaders assigned to the 3rd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, took all of these factors into consideration as they conducted a pre-deployment site survey in Poland on Nov. 3, 2016.
"This pre-deployment site survey is part of the U.S. commitment to deterrence here in Europe," said Brig. Gen. Kenneth L. Kamper, 4th Inf. Div. Deputy Commanding General who leads the 4ID Mission Command Element for Atlantic Resolve in Baumholder, Germany. "It's the first of consecutive nine month, what we call 'heel-to-toe', rotations of our armored brigade combat teams."
Atlantic Resolve is a U.S. led effort being conducted in Eastern Europe to demonstrate U.S. commitment to the collective security of NATO and dedication to enduring peace and stability in the region. The upcoming "heel-to-toe" deployments, starting with the 3rd ABCT, based out of Fort Carson, Colorado, signals the beginning of a change in U.S. and NATO policy as allied forces start to focus more on deterrence.
"The United States has committed to rotating consecutive ABCTs into Europe nine months at a time," Kamper said. "This is where the 'heel-to-toe' phrase has come from: where there are no gaps between armored brigades in Europe."
Kamper's comments echoed the recent press engagement given by U.S. Secretary of Defense Ash Carter about the upcoming rotations.
"The first rotational brigade will deploy to Europe and will have an initial exercise in Poland," Carter said. "After that, the brigade will send company-sized units to Bulgaria, Romania and the Baltic States where they will remain until NATO battalions arrive."
The rotations throughout Europe will demonstrate the continued U.S. support of its NATO Allies while simultaneously allowing Soldiers to bi-laterally train with their foreign counterparts.
"The Polish, from national leadership down throughout their military, are great partners and are very committed to anything we need to bring our ABCT into western Poland," Kamper said. "There will be many training opportunities over the next couple of months between the Polish and the U.S."
U.S. Army Europe is uniquely positioned in its 51 country area of responsibility to advance American strategic interests in Europe and Eurasia. The relationships we build during more than 1,000 theater security cooperation events in more than 40 countries each year lead directly to support for multinational contingency operations around the world, strengthen regional partnerships and enhance global security.