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Tennessee National Guard Deploys on Three Separate Overseas Missions

Nearly 1,200 Soldiers is the Largest Deployment Since 2010
Tuesday, July 31, 2018 | 10:17am

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The Tennessee Army National Guard is headed into three separate overseas deployments within the next year. 

More than 200 Knoxville based 278th Armored Cavalry Regiment Soldiers deployed last week in route to the Ukraine to augment Ukrainian Armed Forces in the continued development of a premier Combat Training Center. The realization of the Yavoriv Combat Training Center is a critical step towards Ukraine’s long-term military reform efforts and will provide realistic training for Battalions and Brigades under a NATO interoperable framework. 

The 278th will lead the Joint Multi-National Training Group-Ukraine, as well as assist in the development of cadre, ranges and training areas, while developing equipment and instrumentation requirements, and a realistic operational training environment.  The 278th Soldiers will work alongside Soldiers from Poland, Canada and several other smaller contributing nations.

Last week, the 278th deployed the first of two task forces in route to Poland in support of NATO’s enhanced forward presence (eFP).  The second task force is scheduled for deployment in March 2019.

The eFP provides a robust multinational presence in Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, and Poland.  It is comprised of multinational forces provided by framework nations (Canada, Germany, United Kingdom, and the United States) and other contributing Allies on a voluntary, sustainable, and rotational basis.  In support of the United States commitment to European security and deterrence, each task force is comprised of over 850 Soldiers based at armories across the state and will form battalion sized battle groups, in country, with additional personnel supplied by multinational Allies during the nine month rotations.

The 278th is the largest unit in Tennessee and one of only five armored brigade combat teams in the National Guard. 

“These units have been training hard for over two years to prepare for these missions,” said Maj. Gen. Max Haston, Tennessee’s Adjutant General.  “The 278th Armored Brigade Combat Team will provide the first “heavy metal”, M1Tanks and Bradley Fighting Vehicles, training near the Russian border since the end of the Cold War in 1989.  The United States is committed to maintaining a presence in this area providing continued support to our European allies.”

In September, more than 125 Soldiers assigned to the 1-230th Assault Helicopter Battalion will begin an 11 month deployment to Kosovo in support of Operation Joint Guardian, the NATO-led international peacekeeping force which is responsible for establishing a secure environment in Kosovo.  The 1-230th provides Air Assault, Air Movement and Aerial Casualty Evacuation.  The 1-230th is headquartered in Nashville, with companies in Jackson, Nashville and Louisville, TN.

“The United States Military has maintained a presence in Kosovo for over 20 years and the last few years these stability forces have been commanded by the National Guard,” Haston said. “Stabilization of this country is a commitment by the US and NATO, and the Tennessee National Guard has deployed numerous units and personnel over the years to assist in preserving the peace.”