By SSG Jennifer Bunn
The 2nd Squadron, 2nd Cavalry Regiment (2/2CR) transferred authority of Battle Group Poland to the 3rd Squadron, 2nd Cavalry Regiment (3/2 CR) during a ceremony on Oct. 20, 2017, at the Bemowo Piskie Training Area near Orzysz, Poland.
In March of 2017, 2/2CR deployed to Poland–along with soldiers from Romania and the United Kingdom–as the first U.S.—led enhanced Forward Presence (eFP) NATO Battle Group whose mission is to assure NATO allies and deter aggression.
“The first rotation spanned 29 weeks, but there was much accomplished,” said Lt. Col. Christopher L’Heureux, commander of the outgoing 2/2 CR Battle Group. “I thank the Polish Armed Forces for supporting this Battle Group. Together we demonstrated the Battle Group’s capability and resolve to accomplish any task and defeat any adversary.”
Romanian, British and U.S. soldiers conducted 15 national and multinational training exercises during the first rotation, including Saber Strike 17 and Dragon 17. The exercises showcased freedom of movement, speed of assembly and the capacity to conduct combat operations. They also executed over 74 community engagements across the region and hosted 18 senior national delegations to build civil and military relationships.
“The team developed leaders that gained deep knowledge of interoperability through direct practice,” said Lt. Col. L’Heureux. “Throughout, the soldiers of this battle group acted with unity of purpose to deter and if necessary fight and defend NATO in Poland.”
During the transfer of authority ceremony, Deputy Defense Minister Tomasz Szatkowski thanked Lt. Col. L’Heureux and his predecessor Lt. Col. Steven Gventer along with all the soldiers within Battle Group Poland for their service. He also welcomed incoming Battle Group commander Lt. Col. Scott Cheney and the incoming 3/2 CR soldiers.
“Your presence here and contribution to eFP shows that solidarity between allies is not empty words but is directly connected to Article 5 of the NATO Treaty,” Szatkowski said. “We are grateful for the United States for being the eFP framework country. We also thank the troops from Britain and Romania, and now, warmly welcome the first rotation of Croatian troops that will join us for the second rotation.”
During their six month deployment, 3/2 CR will continue to train within the NATO Battle Group and take part in U.S. Army Europe multinational, tactical training exercises in the region.