WASHINGTON: The Pentagon reversed Trump’s planned withdrawal from Germany and instead increased the Army’s ability to pay. high tech long distance warfare, soldiers announced this morning. The long-awaited announcement comes as 40,000 Russian troops gather along the border with Ukraine.
The Trump administration has planned it pulled 12,000 troops out of Germany to punish Berlin for not meeting NATO’s goal of spending 2 percent of its GDP on defense. In February, The Biden administration immediately put the plan on hold. Now come announcements today of the US Army Europe & Africa (Headquarters for the two continents just merged): The Army will not only maintain three locations in Germany that have been scheduled to withdraw, but will also add “about 500 Soldiers, 35 local national positions, and 750 Family members to US Army Garrison Wiesbaden.”
The 500 soldiers will organize two new units. Both are new types of formations that the Army uses to experiment with new tactics, technologies and organization for high-tech long-range operations. missile, artificial intelligence, and cyber/electronic warfare.
That Multi-Domain Task ForceEurope, founded September 16, will become the Army’s second MDTF. The first was made at Fort Lewis three years ago, Built around existing rocket artillery brigades but augmented extensively with high-tech assets. It has participated many practice in the Pacific and won awards from Army leaders for his “game-changing” abilities.
The Army has long promised to build a second MDTF in Europe and recently the word will eventually create five: two in the Pacific, one in Europe, one in the Arctic, and a fifth for a “global response.”
“The Multi-Domain-European Task Force will consist of field artillery; composite air and missile defense; intelligence, cyberspace, electronic warfare, and outer space; aviation and brigade support elements, ” let go of the word. It is likely that most of these forces are already in Europe, but the new personnel will most likely fill the MDTF headquarters and be highly specialized, highly technical. Intelligence, Information, Cyber / Electronic Warfare & Space (I2CEWS) battalion.
While the MDTF was a combat unit, the other formation was a new type of base: the 1st Army Theater Fire Command, established on 16 October. Why is this necessary? To coordinate long-range missile strikes over a range far beyond traditional HQ command and control capabilities.
Russia and China have fielded precision-guided missile arsenals with ranges of hundreds or even thousands of miles. Now the Army is racing to do the same, develop 300-plus-miles PrSM, that 1,000 miles MRC, and hypersonic LRHW, whose range is classified but may be intercontinental. (PrSM will fire from existing HIMARS launchers, MRC and LRHW from specialized and larger ones). All of these weapons will enter service, in prototype form, in 2023 and become part of the Multi-Domain Task Force arsenal, while Theater Fires Command will organize wide-ranging attacks.
While some in the Air Force and friendly thinktanks argue that the Army’s long-range strike effort need not better duplicate what the bomber did, senior joint officers have supported the Army’s efforts as a useful option. That Pentagon officials let the Army create a new Theater Fire Command is an implicit motion in service plans for long-range warfare.