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    4ID transfers authority of Atlantic Resolve Mission Command Element to 1ID

    U.S. Army Europe: Transfer Of Authority ceremony

    Photo By Staff Sgt. Dustin Biven | Brig. Gen. Richard R. Coffman, the incoming Mission Command Element commander, gives a...... read more read more



    Story by Master Sgt. Nathan Hoskins 

    1st Infantry Division

    POZNAN, Poland – The 4th Infantry Division transferred authority of the Atlantic Resolve Mission Command Element to the 1st Infantry Division in a ceremony here Feb. 28, 2018.

    Lt. Gen. Christopher G. Cavoli presided over the ceremony, which saw Brig. Gen. William L. Thigpen, the outgoing MCE commander and deputy commanding general of the 4th Inf. Div., Fort Carson, Colorado, pass the mission to Brig. Gen. Richard R. Coffman, incoming MCE commander and deputy commanding general of the 1st Inf. Div., Fort Riley, Kansas.

    Three years ago, in response to increased regional tensions, the 4th Inf. Div. formed the first Atlantic Resolve MCE, serving as the intermediate headquarters between U.S. Army Europe and U.S. Regionally Aligned Forces deployed throughout the eight eastern European Atlantic Resolve countries of Bulgaria, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Romania and Slovakia.

    Because the 4th Inf. Div. were the first to take on this mission, they had to author and create the entire process every step of the way, to include developing relationships, which shaped the face of the U.S. Army in Europe, said Cavoli.

    “You (Thigpen) represent today the efforts of the 4th Infantry Division over the last (three) years to bring peace through deterrence, which comes only through strength – the strength of the 4th Infantry Division,” said Cavoli. “We give great credit to you and to the great commanders of the 4th Infantry Division who led you in that direction.”

    Thigpen’s tour as the senior leader was the endcap on 4th Inf. Div.’s three-year stretch as the MCE.

    “The 4th Infantry Division has led this Mission Command Element, coordinating combined training and increasing readiness throughout Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Slovakia, Hungary, Romania and Bulgaria in order to accomplish our core mission of assuring our allies and partners while deterring aggression,” said Thigpen during his remarks at the ceremony.

    Though 4th Inf. Div. oversaw multiple training exercises and numerous RAF brigades, Thigpen emphasized the relationships formed over the years, echoing Cavoli’s sentiments.

    “Of all of MCE’s accomplishments, the most significant are the intangible,” said Thigpen. “We have developed relationships of trust and cooperation, forged unity of effort and purpose, and furthered our shared missions of assurance and deterrence. This would not be possible without the tremendous support of all of the Atlantic Resolve nations.”

    Initially established at the Grafenwoehr Training Area, Germany, the MCE moved to Baumholder, Germany, then to its current location in Poznan, Poland, where it provides command and control for more than 6,000 U.S. service members conducting bilateral training, operations and multinational exercises with allied host nation forces.

    The 1st Inf. Div., a combined arms division based at Fort Riley, Kansas, has deployed about 100 personnel to Poznan, Poland, to take over the Atlantic Resolve MCE mission from 4th Inf. Div.

    “We welcome today, the only unit that could possibly replace the 4th Infantry Division,” said Cavoli. “The Big Red One saw its baptism in combat on the battlefields of France in the Great War, continued its glorious service during [World War II], and then, for decades during the Cold War, was the bulwark of American resolve in Western Europe.”

    Cavoli indicated historical precedence proved that the 1st Inf. Div. was in the right place in Eastern Europe.

    “The Cold War ended with the victory of the people of Europe,” he said. “The people of Europe were liberated from decades of misrule, and received the opportunity to start life anew, as part of a Europe whole, free, and at peace. And that continues to be our mission today. And the 1st Infantry Division, just like its history would suggest, is here to fulfil that mission again.

    During the ceremony, Coffman lauded 4th Inf. Div.’s work over the past three years and the level at which they conducted it.

    “[Brig. Gen. Thigpen], you are handing over a unique and important mission that has been executed expertly over the past three years,” said Coffman. “Your great Division is truly steadfast and loyal to our nation our allies and partners. We intend to build upon your level of excellence during our tenure here.”

    With the standard set, Coffman further assured the Atlantic Resolve partners with his intent.

    “Let me be clear – nothing has changed during this transition,” said Coffman. “The United States will defend its allies, the principled international order, and the positive future that order affords us all.”

    The 1st Inf. Div. is slated to lead the MCE into 2020.



    Date Taken: 02.28.2018
    Date Posted: 02.28.2018 13:04
    Story ID: 267562
    Location: POZNAN, PL 
    Hometown: FORT CARSON, CO, US
    Hometown: FORT RILEY, KS, US
    Hometown: JUNCTION CITY, KS, US
    Hometown: MANHATTAN, KS, US

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