ZAGAN, Poland -- The first M1A2 Abrams Tanks owned by 3rd Armor Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division touched ground in Swietozow, Poland, on January 10, 2017.
Soldiers assigned to 1st Battalion, 66th Armored Regiment, and 1st Battalion, 68th Armored Battalion, 3rd Arm. Bde. Cmbt. Tm., 4th Inf. Div., are deploying to Poland to undergo training prior to continuing a 9-month rotation as part of Atlantic Resolve. 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.
"I think what's dynamic about our mission is our speed of assembly," said Lt. Col. Stephen Capehart, commander, 1st Battalion, 68th Armored Regiment. "Within less than 30 days, we prepared our equipment, put it on vessels; we had our Soldiers get time with their families, got them ready to go, and now we're in Poland."
The unit is conducting the reception, staging and onward integration of its forces in Poland before moving them to Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, Hungary, Romania and Poland.
"I think it shows our commitment to the alliance," Capehart said. "It shows how we can deter any threat to the alliance as we move forward."
The arrival of 3rd Arm. Bde. Cmbt. Tm., 4th Inf. Div., marks the start of back-to-back rotations of armored brigades in Europe as part of Atlantic Resolve. The vehicles and equipment, totaling more than 2,700 pieces, will be shipped to Poland for certification before deploying across Europe for use in training with partner nations. This rotation will enhance deterrence capabilities in the region, improve the U.S. ability to respond to potential crises and defend allies and partners in the European community. U.S. forces will focus on strengthening capabilities and sustaining readiness through bilateral and multinational training and exercises.
"The Army and our nation has committed an armored brigade combat team to the European theater of operation," he said. "After us, another armored brigade combat team will come following for a 9-month rotation to show that commitment from our nation to the alliance."