Deployments Announced: Army to Send Next Advisory Unit to Afghanistan in 2019

The Military Advisor Training Academy conducted Close Air Support training for members of the 2nd Security Force Assistance Brigade at the Selby Combined Arms Collective Training Facility Range at Fort Benning, Georgia, on Feb. 27, 2018. (U.S. Army photo by Markeith Horace)
The Military Advisor Training Academy conducted Close Air Support training for members of the 2nd Security Force Assistance Brigade at the Selby Combined Arms Collective Training Facility Range at Fort Benning, Georgia, on Feb. 27, 2018. (U.S. Army photo by Markeith Horace)

The U.S. Army announced Thursday that the 2nd Security Force Assistance Brigade will relieve the 1st SFAB in Afghanistan next spring and assume the service's advise-and-assist mission to support Afghan security forces.

The announcement is part of several deployment notices the service released Thursday, listing units scheduled to deploy to Afghanistan, Iraq, Europe and Kuwait over the next six months, according to a U.S. Army press release.

The 2nd SFAB, stationed at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, is one of six specialized Army brigades being activated to assume the permanent mission of training, advising and assisting the conventional military forces of friendly nations.

The unit is scheduled to do a training rotation at the National Training Center before it deploys, Brig. Gen. Donn Hill, commander of 2nd SFAB, said in the release.

"The 2nd SFAB is a conventional unit with a special mission ready to answer the nation's call," he said. "We will build upon the success of the 1st SFAB and allies as we partner with Resolute Support forces and Afghan National Security Forces to build long-term stability through credible and ready security forces."

The Army National Guard recently announced it is activating the Army's sixth SFAB, with battalions based in six states. The service's five active-duty SFABs are based in Georgia, North Carolina, Colorado, Washington and Texas.

In addition to the 2nd SFAB's deployment, three other units are scheduled to deploy to Afghanistan next year.

The 1st Armored Division Combat Aviation Brigade, stationed at Fort Bliss, Texas, will replace the 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault) Combat Aviation Brigade as part of a regular rotation of forces in support of Operation Freedom's Sentinel.

"The 'Iron Eagles' look forward to working with our Afghan and regional partners, said Col. Jay Hopkins, commander of 1st Armored Division CAB. "We are a trained combat aviation brigade, which is prepared to conduct a full range of operations in support of Operation Freedom's Sentinel."

The 1st Cavalry Division Headquarters, out of Fort Hood, Texas, will also deploy to Afghanistan to replace the 40th Infantry Division Headquarters, California Army National Guard, as part of a rotation to support Freedom's Sentinel.

"The troopers of the 1st Cavalry Division headquarters are well trained and prepared to return to the OFS mission in Afghanistan," said Maj. Gen. Paul Calvert, commander of 1st Cavalry Division. "Our professional leaders and troopers will train, advise, and assist our Afghan Security Force partners as they continue to build upon and enhance their capability to provide for the security of the Afghan people."

The 1st Infantry Division Sustainment Brigade, based at Fort Riley, Kansas, is scheduled to replace the 101st Airborne Division Sustainment Brigade stationed at Fort Campbell, Kentucky, to support Freedom's Sentinel.

Before the end of the year, the 101st Airborne's 1st Brigade Combat Team will deploy to Iraq to replace 3rd Cavalry Regiment as part a rotation to support Operation Inherent Resolve.

"Our soldiers are well trained and ready for this important mission," said Col. Derek Thomson, 1st BCT commander. I am proud of all their hard work and commitment, and grateful for the support we've received from our families and the Fort Campbell community."

The Army also announced two deployments to Europe scheduled for the coming winter.

The 1st Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division, from Fort Riley, will replace 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, stationed at Fort Hood, as part a rotation to Europe in support of Operation Atlantic Resolve.

"After spending the last several months conducting an intensive and comprehensive training cycle that included a National Training Center rotation, the Devil Brigade is looking forward to deploying to Europe in support of the Atlantic Resolve mission," said Col. Charles Armstrong, commander of the 1st BCT.

In addition, the 1st Infantry Division Combat Aviation Brigade will replace 4th Infantry Division CAB, stationed at Fort Carson, Colorado, in support of Operation Atlantic Resolve.

"The 1st CAB is excited to deploy to Europe to support our allies and regional partners," said Col. Ronald Black, commander of the 1st Infantry Division Combat Aviation Brigade. "The CAB has been busy building readiness at Fort Riley, Kansas, and we stand ready to take on any mission that is required."

The Army also announced it will deploy the 3rd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, stationed at Fort Carson, to Kuwait in the spring to replace the 155th Armored Brigade Combat Team, Mississippi Army National Guard, to support of Operation Spartan Shield.

"We are honored to support U.S. Central Command as well as our Middle East allies in the coming months," said Col. Michael Simmering, commander of the 3rd Armored Brigade Combat Team. "We are equally proud of our Iron Brigade soldiers and all that they have accomplished over the past year as we returned from deployment in Europe, refocused our efforts on other threats to our nation, re-trained and prepared to deploy again."

-- Matthew Cox can be reached at matthew.cox@military.com.

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