USEUCOM Releases Command Statement on Force Posture

STUTTGART, Germany – The United States has enduring interests in supporting peace, prosperity, unity, and freedom in Europe and Eurasia as well as in bolstering the strength and vitality of NATO. As demonstrated by recent and ongoing operations, Europe remains our partner of choice in addressing current and emerging security challenges around the globe. The United States will maintain a robust, visible military presence in Europe, which will be capable of deterring and defending against aggression throughout Europe and Eurasia, and meeting our collective defense commitments under NATO’s Article 5. We will continue to enhance the NATO alliance’s readiness and interoperability and promote the strength, adaptability, security, sovereignty and territorial integrity of our allies and partners across Europe and Eurasia.

Consistent with the new NATO Strategic Concept, our force posture in Europe will evolve to meet the full range of 21st century challenges.

  • We will enhance the ability of our forward presence in Europe to address ballistic missile threats with an AN/TPY-2 radar in Turkey and by forward-stationing Aegis-Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD)-capable ships in Rota, Spain, and establishing land-based SM-3 BMD sites in Romania and Poland.
  • We will enhance regional special operations forces’ responsiveness by continued partnership with the NATO Special Operations Forces Headquarters.
  • We will create an aviation detachment in Poland to enhance training opportunities.

We will also work with NATO allies to develop a “smart defense” approach to pool, share, and specialize capabilities.

Adapting the posture of our forces in Europe is essential to meet our collective defense commitments under NATO’s Article 5 and to address the full range of 21st century challenges. Accordingly, in addition to the enhancements identified above, the following force posture changes are planned:

U.S. Air Forces in Europe (USAFE)

  • As a reduction of legacy aircraft, one Air Force A-10 squadron from Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany, has been identified for inactivation in fiscal year 2013.
  • The 603rd Air Control Squadron at Aviano Air Base, Italy, will be inactivated in fiscal year 2013.

U.S. Army, Europe (USAREUR)

  • Following the V Corps headquarters deployment to Operation Enduring Freedom later this year, the Army will reduce the V Corps Headquarters structure, and it will not return to Europe.
  • The 7th Army/USAREUR headquarters has been transformed to include a deployable contingency command post. This command and control capability can deploy within Europe and, when augmented, can provide command and control for joint and coalition forces in small-scale operations.
  • Two brigade combat teams (BCTs) identified for inactivation are the 170th BCT in fiscal year 2013 and the 172nd BCT in fiscal year 2014.
  • As the U.S. Army reduces force structure, the U.S. Army in Europe will see a reduction of approximately 2,500 Soldiers from enabling units over the next five years.
  • To enhance capacity and interoperability with NATO, the United States will allocate a U.S.-based heavy brigade combat team to reinvigorate its commitment to the NATO Response Force. As part of this commitment, we will also seek ways to enhance multi-national training at the world-class Joint Multinational Training Command in Grafenwöhr, Germany, in a post-ISAF environment. We will rotate a battalion-sized task force from the allocated U.S.-based heavy brigade combat team to conduct multinational training exercises on a frequency to be determined later in consultation with our allies.
  • As previously announced, Baumholder remains an enduring U.S. Army, Europe community along with the Grafenwöhr/Vilseck/Hohenfels complex, Ansbach, Kaiserslautern, Wiesbaden, and Stuttgart, Germany; Vicenza, Italy; and Army communities located in the Benelux. Those locations identified as not enduring include Bamberg and Schweinfurt, which will be returned to the host nation no later than fiscal year 2015.

The Department will begin a theater-wide capacity analysis as part of a comprehensive consolidation of its overseas infrastructure in light of these force posture changes. The result could be further infrastructure adjustments. Overall, while the U.S. force posture in Europe will be smaller, it will have the capabilities and capacities necessary to support security and stability in the dynamic security environment of the 21st century. We will work together with our NATO allies, partners, and friends – and with the local communities that have made us feel at home for many years - as, together, we meet the full range of challenges confronting Europe and America.

Indeed we are, and will continue to be, STRONGER TOGETHER.

For more information, contact U.S. European Command Public Affairs at +49-711-680-8503 or mediaops@eucom.mil

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Comments: 15

by Charles Simpson on February 17, 2012 :

It seems to me that closing the Vicenza Italy base where you are totally landlocked and where rapid deployment could be extremely hindered by many things including environmental and manmade, and relocating that BCT to Camp Darby where there are facilities outside the confines of a major city that include a sprawling base, protected storage areas and an army depot with its own railhead inside as well as access to the sea. These facilities are located less than half hour from both the Pisa airport and the Livorno deep water port.

by Jon on February 17, 2012 :

I wished the cuts were bigger and extended to Japan, Korea and elsewhere. Move the capability home and strengthen our economy so we can better afford the military we need.

by Nate on February 17, 2012 :

I am sooooo happy with the inactivation of 170th BCT here in Baumholder, Germany!!!! omg, you all would not believe this brigade. How can HHC make us wear summer PT shirts on this frozen cold?? only this BCT would do that! I am glad i am outta here and par of this inactivation, this feels awesome!!!!! goodbye 170th, welcome (some other unit). BYE!

by Tony Lash on February 17, 2012 :

Uhhh...................who's the enemy there now?

by gregorycannon on February 17, 2012 :

these people should all transfer to the border with Mexico,where they might serve some useful purpose. Arent we the country that sneers at France for always being ready to re-fight the last war over again?

by bob ervin on February 18, 2012 :

Amen to gregory cannon. These moves should have been done 25 years ago

by Jon on February 17, 2012 :

I wished the cuts were bigger and extended to Japan, Korea and elsewhere. Move the capability home and strengthen our economy so we can better afford the military we need.

by Jack Haesly on February 20, 2012 :

This is such an outrage. What business does the United States have with nine hundred military bases around the world. Meanwhile America's infrastructure is crumbing from neglect and our healthcare care system, especially for the young and the aged, becoming a shambles. Questionable and possibly illegal wars have virtually bankrupted our country and yet we continue to support an American military that is ten times the size of any other country. We have a reported six thousand nuclear warheads in our arsenal, yet we demonize Iran for developing a nuclear electrical power presence, while at the same time Israel is armed to the teeth, probably nuclear, and is constantly aggressive toward Palestinians. What is with that? I often wonder what Americans would think if Germany, China, France, Russia or any other major country had tens of thousands of battle ready troops and hundreds of their bases permanently here in the United States? In my opinion, America should get out of all those countries, and not by 2017 or some other projected date. America cannot continue to be the policeman for the world. Instead, we should be good neighbors to other countries and let NATO police the world if that is necessary. After all, wasn't that the reason for their formation and existence in the first place?

by Tom on February 20, 2012 :

This is not about strategy; it is about money. How much can we save was the main question when this was discussed. The reason we keep forces in Europe after the Berlin Wall fell was because our military has always been a stablizing factor in Europe. We were able to rescue the Balkans because we had 2 divisions(-) still staioned in Germany. If there is another crisis in Europe we can't do a damn thing about it, and before you say we shouldn't remember how we are tied to Europe's economy. How many times have stocks gone up and down during the Greek economic crisis. Like it or not we are joined with them. To take our ground force structure to such low levels is playing with fire. I know our fealess leaders in Washington D.C are covinced the Pacific is the only worry, and they believe you can win a war with only air and sea power. The Bristish had the same doctrine in the years leading up to World War 2, and it almost got them eliminated. We should have kept 1 Division,varied with Mech, Armor, Stryker, and Light Forces at our "enduring" bases in Germany to provide stability, train with partner nations, and be able to be on scene immediately in that theatre if needed. The next thing we'll see is Russia asserting herslf as the dominate military force in Eurpoe. Way to go Obama; we won the Cold War so you could lose it.

by Daius on February 19, 2012 :

I think there should be a couple of small army bases but this seems the best they can do

by Marit Erland Sutliffe on February 17, 2012 :

Not soon enough! Why do we need such a huge presence in Europe anyway? Still scared of the nasty Russians? It is time to let the Europeans defend themselves and pay for the fun...I am sick of paying for it. This is from a tired US taxpayer.

by Ric Stoliker on February 17, 2012 :

Rather then using our military to create new Muslim mini-states in Europe like Bosnia,Kosovo and Macedonia...NATO should be deployed to assist Greece in the recovery of Ionia Eastern Thrace and Northern Cyprus...then Greece can be self-sufficent. Romania's claim to Moldavia is more important then maintining a vestigial presence in Germany.The restoration of the ethnic boundaries of Western and Central Europe should take presidence over the ill-advised campaigns to Balkanize Southern Europe.

by Joe Michael on February 17, 2012 :

Its time the rest of NATO take charge to defend themselves as the cold war was over years ago. Our money can be better used in the country and soldiers protecting our country within Never forget what or 32 nd President said Our military will be too big and missused be careful of military contractors and paid off politicians.

by TJ on February 24, 2012 :

The Europeans have been leveraging the American military for years. They have not needed a signifigant military capability becouse we provided it for them. While we built a world class military they built world class welfare state. It's high time they step forward and bear the burden. Much of our military has an emotional attachememnt to Europe, not a rational one. It's time to severly reduce the deployed/stationed force around the world and project them from home if need be.

by jk on March 2, 2012 :

People always disdain Europe for its fecklessness and weak military while making deals with Russia for its oil and gas while badmouthing Uncle Sam, all true, but who can blame Europe for free riding off of America's billions spent for defense when America insists on providing it! Like many things in life, if you continually provide a "crutch" than there is no incentive for the other person (or nation) to improve themselves. The EU is richer than America yet people insist that we provide defense for it and spend billions more on a missile defense shield from Iran and yet the Europeans do not perceive Iran as a threat? I thought the US military was made for the defense of the US? There is nothing in the Constitution stating that we spend tax money to protect Europe. European presence does not help with rapid deployability due to the red tape and costs of doing business in Europe anymore than sending a plane full of troops from Ft Bragg, Pendleton, or deploying an aircraft carrier and maintaining pre-positioned floating stock for the heavy equipment.

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