US Army has deployed, for the first time in history, M1A2 Abrams main battle tanks to Georgia. The vehicles will be involved in a training exercise that is to get the NATO Response Force component ready for operations.
US Armed Forces, along with the British Army, will be involved in an exercise known under the name of Noble Partner, conducted together with the Georgian Armed Forces. US Army press release defined the exercise as “critical”, in the light of the fact that Georgia is going to be a part of the forces rotating within the 2016 NATO Response Force element.
The operation will also make it possible for the Georgians to bolster their own defensive capabilities. The exercise in question involves 1300 troops in total, it is scheduled to take place between 11th and 26th May this year. Noble Partner operation will also involve three C-130 Hercules aircraft, belonging to the US National Guard.
Georgia is going to select a company-sized unit of light infantry which is expected to be assigned to the NATO Response Force element for the year 2016. It shall be noted that, when it comes to the partner nations, the elements involved in the NATO Response Force initiative are not being included in the VJTF component. These forces are placed within the support-focused NATO Response Forces Pool.
The US main battle tanks come from the armoured brigade activity set, stationed in Germany. The official release emphasizes the fact that it is the first time in history that the M1A2 tanks have been deployed to Georgia.