LANDCOM achieves Full Operational Capability

Dec 11, 2014
IZMIR, Turkey - NATO’s Allied Land Command has achieved Full Operating Capability (FOC).   Lt. Gen. John W. Nicholson, Jr., LANDCOM Commander made the announcement at a press conference during exercise Trident Lance 2014.  The exercise has been ongoing at the Joint Multinational Training Center, Grafenwoehr, Germany since 30 November and will wrap up on 13 December.
In a first of its kind exercise since the 1990; three corps-level sized military units,  augmented by various international military support units & agencies, performed their core functions in a land-based operation, certifying LANDCOM’s ability to conduct command and control of multinational forces should the Alliance need to conduct a Major Joint Operation.
"The message of this exercise is to all Europe, specifically our 28 NATO Allies.  It talks to the readiness of NATO to meet challenges at speed with capable forces,” said Supreme Allied Commander Europe, Gen. Phillip M. Breedlove. "As you have seen over the past few months, Russia’s aggressive actions in Ukraine have triggered the alliance to begin a series of assurance and adaptation measures to ensure our Allies and adapt our military organizations to the new security environment in Europe. We are evolving in order to be more responsive to the challenges, not just from Russia but from across our Alliance.”

All in All almost 4000 Soldiers participated in Exercise Trident Lance 2014 which had its headquarters in Grafenwoehr, Germany - Photo courtesy of SGT First Class Stefan Hass, SHAPE Public Affairs Office

Lt. Gen. Nicholson explained this exercise tested LANDCOM’s ability to successfully execute complex ground to air operations and rapidly deploy those forces to threatened areas of the Alliance, if a threat arises.
Multiple prior training exercises went into the two-year-process resulting in LANDCOM being the first deployable component command in the transformed NATO Force Structure.
"So many men and women across the entire Alliance, 23 nations in this headquarters and augmentees for 21 nations, have worked very hard to support the exercise. So, I want to thank all of them of behalf of the Alliance,” said Lt. Gen. Nicholson. "At LANDCOM we recognize the challenges associated with this, we’ve learned a tremendous amount from this exercise. But we are also confident that coming out of this exercise we are very capable, that we as an Alliance are capable, of conducting large scale land operations.”
With the completion of Trident Lance, NATO is looking to the future to build on its strengths and focus on a more prepared NATO.
"There will be more strategic exercises ahead [specifically] Trident Juncture 2015, with more than 25,000 troops in Spain, Italy, and Portugal, will have high visibility,” said Supreme Allied Commander Gen. Jean-Paulomeros.  "But in the same time, we are able to carry on a very dynamic posture through exercise and training in support of the action measures.”
Story by Sgt. Jeff Shackelford, (US) 343 Mobile Public Affairs Detachment


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