US will deploy ~1500 soldiers to Afghanistan from Alaska

WASHINGTON — The Department of the Army announced that approximately 1,500 soldiers from 4th Brigade Combat Team (Airborne), 25th Infantry Division (4/25) will deploy to Afghanistan later this year as part of a regular rotation of forces in support of Operation Freedom’s Sentinel.

“As the only U.S. Army Airborne brigade in the Pacific, our Spartan Brigade paratroopers are exceptionally capable, well-trained and a well-led organization,” said Maj. Gen. Bryan Owens, the commanding general of U.S. Army Alaska. “These soldiers train rigorously in a wide range of climates and environments. I am fully confident in their ability to excel and overcome any challenges they will face during this deployment.”

The Army also announced its intent to retain 4/25, stationed in Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, as a full brigade combat team and not convert it to an airborne task force. The plan to retain 4/25 is based on emerging mission requirements and the fiscal year 2017 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) call for a Regular Army end strength of 476,000 soldiers.

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