“Bulgaria and Romania are the two countries we’ve got on tap to deploy to,” Colonel Foster said of the expansion of Operation Atlantic Resolve. “At the end of the summer I think what we’ll see is a brigade minus, so you’ll have a brigade headquarter that’s deployed forward, and you’ll have a couple task-organized battalions underneath them.”
Foster explained that the US would have “division level overarching command and control” involved in the expanded NATO operation. “We will have mixed formations,” Foster said, noting that airborne companies, striker companies, Bradley vehicle companies can be interchanged as needed.
In addition to sending forces to Romania and Bulgaria, the US will potentially expand its presence to Hungary, Georgia, and at some point the Czech Republic, Foster said.
NATO’s Operation Atlantic Resolve was agreed to by the Alliance in June 2014 in response to what it alleges is a Russian aggression. The mission is intended to reassure NATO allies in eastern Europe of the Alliance’s collective security commitment to all member states, according to NATO publications.
The US 173rd Airborne Brigade team has been deployed in the Baltic States and Poland throughout the first year’s phase of Operation Atlantic Resolve, according to the US Department of Defense.