17 February 2012

The End of the Cold War Garrisons

The DoD has finally made public the long-expected closures of the last of the big mech units in Germany.

It’s official: The Germany-based 170th Infantry Brigade will be inactivated later this year, followed by the 172nd Separate Infantry Brigade next year as part of a broad restructuring of the military force structure in Europe that also calls for the inactivation of two U.S. Air Forces in Europe squadrons and the eventual elimination of the Army’s V Corps from Wiesbaden, Germany, according to Pentagon officials.

As part of the restructuring, the Army garrisons in Schweinfurt and Bamberg will close no later than 2015, U.S. European Command announced. The 81st Fighter Squadron, an A-10 unit consisting of 525 airmen from Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany, and the 603rd Air Control Squadron at Aviano Air Base, Italy, consisting of 336 airmen, will be inactivated by 2013.

“The [Defense] Department will begin a theaterwide capacity analysis as part of a comprehensive consolidation of its overseas infrastructure in light of these force posture changes,” EUCOM stated in a news release. “The result could be further infrastructure adjustments.”

Last month, the Defense Department announced it would be eliminating two heavy brigades in Europe, but that announcement stopped short of naming the specific units. Still, with only two such brigades in Europe, it was no secret that the 170th, based in Baumholder, and 172nd, out of Grafenwöhr and Schweinfurt, were pegged for elimination.

By: Brant

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