As we approach the "home stretch" in our deployment, it is important to note the progress made in Kosovo and to ensure we maintain our focus as we fi nish our deployment strong
and safe.
By the beginning of May, we will complete our transformation to a Multi-National Battle Group structure and begin to prepare for the July arrival of KFOR 13 with the redeployment of nearly 570 U.S. Soldiers to their homes in California, Hawaii, Kansas, North Dakota, and the Virgin Islands. This transformation and redeployment could not have been achieved if the people and Institutions in Kosovo had not been empowered for their future.
The hard work and dedication of each member of MNBG-E has been a major factor in allowing the people in Kosovo to take yet another signifi cant step forward. Everyone who supported our Soldiers' tireless eff orts and commitment to duty - their families and friends, their civilian employers, and the people of their communities - deserves recognition for the progress that has been made here.
Because people in Kosovo and KFOR have embraced new responsibilities, adjustments in NATO troop levels throughout Kosovo have been made possible. KFOR can now take on the role of a smaller, more agile, more flexible and more mobile force should the need for a third responder arise.
The Kosovo Police and Kosovo Border Police, supported by the hard work of community leaders, have greatly increased their capabilities. Already, the Kosovo Border Police have taken over the job of patrolling the border between Kosovo and the Former Yugoslavian Republic of Macedonia. Meanwhile, KFOR has already begun to transfer the safeguarding of historic sites to the Kosovo Police.
Within KFOR, your Soldiers have been stepping up to take increased responsibility for carrying out the mission. For example, MNBG-E's Liaison and Monitoring Teams rely on junior enlisted, sergeants and company grade officers to carry out the essential role of gathering information from local citizens about conditions in Kosovo communities. This empowerment of young Soldiers is not limited to the LMT; I have witnessed this across our force. Your Soldiers have been
doing amazing things.
The achievements of MNBG-E's Soldiers would not have been made without incredible support from back home. It is a true success story that every family member, friend, employer and neighbor can be extremely proud of. The distinctions your Soldiers have earned for themselves and the opportunities that have been brought about by their cooperation with people in Kosovo remain a positive - and honorable - step into the future.
It is vital that we continue to look to your support as we head down the "home stretch" of our deployment. A hallmark of this organization is its ability to improve each day. To complete our transformation, ensure success in our mission, and set the conditions for success in the future, we will need the support of everyone back home so that we can focus on using our remaining time here in Kosovo to work for positive change.
Brig. Gen. Alan S. Dohrmann
Commanding General
Multi-National Battle Group - East, KFOR 12