FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                           October 26, 1999

29th Division part of Army's unit rotation plan for Bosnia

The Army has announced that the 29th Infantry Division will be included in its plan to rotate Active and Reserve Component units for service in Bosnia as part of the NATO Stabilization Force. The rotation plan is another step in the Army leadership's stated intent to complete full integration of the Active and Reserve Components.

Under the rotation plan, three of the next six SFOR rotations will be commanded by Army National Guard divisions ­ Texas's 49th Armored Division in March 2000, Virginia's 29th Infantry Division in October 2001 and Pennsylvania's 28th Infantry Division in October 2002. The Army set a historical precedent earlier this year when it designated the 49th Armored Division as the headquarters for Active and Reserve Component forces participating in SFOR 7.

All units for SFOR rotations 8 - 12 will be drawn from Active Army/National Guard divisions and a mix of Active/Reserve units. Each rotation will incorporate units from the Army National Guard's 15 enhanced Separate Brigades (eSB). These brigades are higher priority combat units that would be the first called to active duty in the event of mobilization.

The 29th will serve as Task Force Eagle Headquarters for SFOR 10 from October 2001 to April 2002. The battalion task forces will be composed of companies from 29th Infantry Division, 10th Mountain Division at Fort Drum, NY (its active duty teamed division) and 155th Armor Brigade (eSB) (MSARNG).

This planned deployment would be the first time since World War II that the 29th Infantry Division headquarters has been deployed overseas. Company-sized units from the division have deployed to Bosnia in support of the SFOR mission over the last several years.

Under the plan, Active and Reserve Component units from the continental United States will rotate to Bosnia for 6-12 month periods under a single integrated command structure, commanded by either an Active or Reserve Component division headquarters. The rotation plan will increase the Army's readiness by providing better linkages between the Active and Reserve Components, providing predictability for soldiers and units, and mitigating the effects of operational tempo.

The rotation plan builds on the earlier relationships established between Active and Reserve Component divisions and within the two Continental Army Headquarters with the National Guard Bureau and the State Adjutants General. Known as "teaming," this concept formally pairs a Reserve Component division with an Active Army division. Under the SFOR rotation plan, Active and Reserve Component divisions will form "AC/RC mission capabilities teams." These teams will share responsibility for carrying out the SFOR mission. Currently, Active Army divisions routinely train with their Reserve Component team partners and will play a key role in the pre-rotation training of its Reserve Component team partner. The ultimate goal is to improve combat readiness by providing training and mentoring for the Reserve Component unit.

Since 1989, the number of Army deployments has grown by over 300%, yet the Army's Active and Reserve Components have shrunk by over 40%. The missions of the post-Cold War environment, coupled with down-sizing, necessitate increased use of the Reserve Components. With approximately 54% of the Army now in the Reserve Components, the Army routinely calls upon the National Guard and Army Reserve to meet mission requirements in support of the National Military Strategy. With the advent of the teaming concept, Active and Reserve Component soldiers and units will be better positioned to meet these challenges.

The 29th Infantry Division will hold a press conference on Wednesday, October 27, 1999, at 3:00 p.m. in the third flood conference room of the Post Headquarters at Fort Belvoir, Va. Brig. Gen. H Steven Blum, commander of the 29th Division, will be present at the press conference.

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This page was last updated October 26, 1999.