CONTINGENCY OPERATING SITE MAREZ, Iraq-Troopers of the 4th Brigade Special Troops Battalion, 4th Advise and Assist Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division, assumed command as they took over for Soldiers from 2nd Brigade Troops Battalion, 2nd Advise and Assist Brigade, 3rd Infantry Division during a ceremony, here, Oct. 10.

The Spartan troops will continue the mission of advising, training and assisting the Iraqi Security Forces, and managing base operations on COS Marez.

"A year ago I could not have imagined all that would be expected of us, nor could I have anticipated the sustained excellence exhibited by the battalion's Soldiers and leaders," said the outgoing 2nd BTB commander, Lt. Col. Lee Desjardins. "The professionalism the Spartan Battalion has exhibited has been impressive and I know they will do exceptionally well with the mission ahead."

The 4th AAB is the first Advise and Assist brigade to deploy in support of "Operation New Dawn" to Mosul, Iraq.

"The battalion has trained hard for the past year knowing that we would come to Ninewa Province as part of the Long Knife Brigade," said Lt. Col. Eric Land, commander, 4th BSTB. "We are ready and able to execute the missions in support of our brigade and COS Marez and Diamondback."