Friday, December 2, 2016

Army Loses One Infantry Brigade to Create New Armored Brigade |

Army Loses One Infantry Brigade to Create New Armored Brigade | U.S. Army has announced it will convert one of its infantry brigades into an armored brigade combat team amid an increasing demand for heavier formations to counter Russian aggression in Europe.

Beginning this summer, the 4,200 soldiers from the 2nd IBCT of the 3rd Infantry Division at Fort Stewart, Georgia, will be converted into an ABCT and equipped with M1 Abrams tanks and Bradley fighting vehicles.

"The conversion of an IBCT to an ABCT better postures the Army to meet the defense strategic guidance by developing force structure capabilities to … retain overmatch in key warfighting functions," said Maj. Gen. Andrew Poppas, Army director of force management, in a recent Army press release.

The announcement comes two months after the service announced that the 3rd Armored Brigade Combat Team of the 4th Infantry Division, based at Fort Carson in Colorado, will deploy to Europe in January, beginning a continuous rotation of U.S.-based armored brigades to the region as part of the European Reassurance Initiative.

The conversion of the 2nd Infantry Brigade Combat Team -- scheduled to begin next summer -- will add more than 200 armored vehicles as it transitions to the Army's 10th active-duty armored BCT and the 15th in the entire force.

Once the conversion is complete, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division, will mirror its sister ABCT at Fort Stewart -- 1st Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division -- which recently returned from deployment to Eastern Europe as part of Operation Atlantic Resolve.