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NEWS | Jan. 31, 2023

Riga port operations solidify U.S. Army access to Baltic Sea region

By Eleanor Prohaska 21st Theater Sustainment Command

The ARC DEFENDER delivered armored vehicles and equipment belonging to the 2nd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 1st Calvary Division and the 4th Infantry Division’s headquarters element this week at the port in Riga, Latvia. This is the third port operation in support of the 2nd ABCT’s Atlantic Resolve rotation this month, with earlier port operations in Vlissingen, Netherlands and Aarhus, Denmark bringing in more than 2,500 vehicles and equipment items in total.

The 2nd ABCT, stationed at Fort Hood, Texas, replaces the 3rd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division. The 4th ID HQ based in Fort Carson, Colorado, will replace the 1st Infantry Division Headquarters as part of a regular rotation of forces to support the United States’ commitment to Atlantic Resolve.

Soldiers from 21st TSC’s 16th Sustainment Brigade will assist the 7th Mission Support Command’s 151st Movement Control Team, 446th Movement Control Battalion, in coordination with the 838th Transportation Battalion, 598th Transportation Brigade (Surface Deployment and Distribution Command), host nation support and commercial organizations, to discharge and stage equipment and vehicles, including paladin self-propelled howitzers, armored ammunition carriers, joint logistics tactical vehicles and other wheeled and tracked vehicles for onward movement to eastern Europe.

The 7th MSC is the only U.S. Army Reserve command in Europe. Port operations in Riga demonstrate and enhance the interoperability between U.S. Army active duty and reserve components and NATO Allies, critical to seamless and effective battlefield and combat operations.

“Working with the host nation as well as the Latvian military has been extremely helpful, as they are very invested in helping us complete our mission,” said 151st MCT movements control officer, 1st Lt. Fernando Garcia. “We have a very detailed plan and are executing with minimal deficiencies to mitigate delays.”

Since April 2014, U.S. Army Europe and Africa has led the Department of Defense’s Atlantic Resolve land efforts by bringing units based in the U.S. to Europe on a rotational basis. Deployed units are ready, combat-capable forces able to conduct extensive bilateral, joint, and multilateral training throughout its deployments to more than a dozen countries in Europe. Moreover, Atlantic Resolve enables the U.S. to enhance deterrence, increase readiness and support NATO.