By Mr. Paul Boyce (FORSCOM)May 9, 2007
The Department of the Army confirmed today, May 9, the Department of Defense announcement sending Soldiers from the 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault) to Afghanistan as part of a normal rotation of forces. The "Screaming Eagles" will deploy in early 2008 to support Operation Enduring Freedom.
The headquarters of the 101st Airborne Division will relieve the 82nd Airborne Division's headquarters in March 2008. An Army division headquarters organized to fight consists of approximately 1000 Soldiers.
Additionally, the 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault) will deploy three brigade-sized units to Operation Enduring Freedom.
The 101st Sustainment Brigade with 2500 Soldiers will deploy with the division headquarters. The "Lifeliners" last rotation overseas was in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom and ended in August 2006 after a 12-month tour.
"The Wings of Destiny" from the 101st Airborne Division will also deploy in early 2008. The 101st Combat Aviation Brigade consists of one AH-64
(Apache) attack helicopter battalion, one OH-58D (Kiowa Warrior) light attack squadron, one UH-60 (Blackhawk) assault battalion, one general support battalion of UH-60s and CH-47s (Chinooks), one medical evacuation company and the division's general support battalion. The aviation brigade has approximately 2800 Soldiers.
The 4th Brigade Combat Team, will deploy in April 2008 and replace the 82nd Airborne's 4th Brigade Combat Team currently in Afghanistan. Re-activated in 2004 as part of the Army's Transformation initiative, the "Currahee"
brigade had not deployed since World War II. Shortly after their re-activation, however, the 4th Brigade Combat Team, consisting of approximately 3200 Soldiers, deployed for 12 months to Iraq and returned to Fort Campbell in October 2006.
As with force rotations to Iraq, the 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault) headquarters and each of these brigade combat teams will remain in theater up to 15 months. Army leadership does not take for granted the incredible sacrifices borne by Family Members during this period of frequent deployments to combat. The Army continues to look closely at all aspects of Family support during this period of unprecedented unit tempo, and every consideration for the Soldier's and Family's exceptional dedication to duty is given during the periods of pre-deployment, deployment and in particular,