Army Contingency Response Force

Friday April 18, 2014

What is it?

Each of the six Army Service Component Commands has created a contingency response force to react quickly to incidents within its area of responsibility and provide support ranging from humanitarian assistance to combat capabilities.

What has the Army done?

Most ASCCs devoted company-sized elements that can be augmented as needed to the mission, tasking them to provide responsive, scalable, tailorable packages ready to deploy in as little as 18 hours to conduct full-spectrum operations for contingencies as varied as humanitarian assistance, site security, noncombatant evacuation, diplomatic facility security and combat operations.

In February Italy-based paratroopers from U.S. Army Europe’s Contingency Response Force – the 173rd Infantry Brigade Combat Team (Airborne) – responded within hours to deliver generators to Slovenia, and in partnership with the Slovenian 1st Brigade restored electricity to thousands of citizens left without power after a severe ice storm.

Many of the CRFs can draw on other forces as well, including joint service capabilities, to augment their response capacity. Army Central forces can be scaled up to brigade level and call upon a combat aviation brigade for support. Africa Command has the East Africa Response Force, a battalion-sized task force that includes Navy and Air Force personnel; an approximately battalion-sized Marine air-ground task force; and other forces at its disposal. Contingencies in Africa are also supported by U.S. Army Europe’s CRF.

What continued efforts does the Army have planned for the future?

Army contingency response forces and other emerging efforts, such as the building of regionally aligned forces and continually increasing multi-service, multinational cooperation, are helping to define the future of global security efforts by building U.S. and multinational formations that can be called on to quickly join forces to counter a wide array of threats.

Why is this important to the Army?

Building contingency force packages helps keep the Army ready to efficiently and effectively fulfill the myriad missions it performs. Meeting those challenges takes agile, responsive, tailored forces prepared to operate in diverse, complex environments to meet combatant commanders’ requirements, engage effectively with colleague services and multinational partners, and provide support to a wide range of agencies and civil authorities to promote and protect U.S. and global security.

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