U.S. forces in Europe are kicking off the new year with a major multinational exercise with an eye toward Russia.
Combined Resolve XV involves close to 5,000 troops from ten ally and partner nations and will last for more than a month (February 1 to March 5). It is taking place in the US Army’s training areas in Grafenwoehr and Hohenfels.
Focused on the U.S. 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, Combined Resolve XV aims to evaluate and assess the unit’s readiness and interoperability with the allied and partnered nations.
“This is an exciting time to be on the U.S. Army Europe and Africa team training with our multinational allies and partners,” said Colonel Monte Rone, commander, 1st Cavalry Division (Forward), in a press release.
“Combined Resolve XV is an excellent opportunity to build unit readiness and enhance interoperability with our allies and partners. We look forward to improving critical war fighting skills that will enable the team to fight and win. And yes – Winning Matters! In order to win, we must be highly trained, disciplined and fit. Combined Resolve XV will allow commanders to assess unit performance and refine unit training plans in preparation for Defender 21.”
The countries participating are Bosnia-Herzegovina, Georgia, Italy, Kosovo, Lithuania, North Macedonia, Poland, Romania, Slovenia, and the United States.
The exercise is part of the Pentagon’s Atlantic Resolve initiative. First started in 2014, Atlantic Resolve is a rotational deployment initiative in which US units deploy to Europe for nine-month rotations at a time. At any given time, there are approximately 6,000 US troops in Europe as part of Atlantic Resolve (these troops are in addition to the permanently stationed US forces on the Continent).
There are four types of Atlantic Resolve rotations (armored, aviation, sustainment task force, and division headquarters), and all of them are funded by the European Deterrence Initiative. The units deploy to the UK, Italy, and Central and Eastern Europe.
Rotational units pack a punch. For example, an aviation rotation will involve approximately 10 CH-47 Chinooks, 25 AH-64 Apache, and 55 UH/HH-60 Blackhawk helicopters. An armored rotation will include approximately 20 M109 Paladin howitzers, 60 M1 Abrams tanks, and 120 Bradley Fighting Vehicles.