The US Army’s eight twin-engine, medium-lift UH-60 Black Hawk utility helicopters and more than 70 pieces of equipment have arrived at the Port of Thessaloniki, in Greece.
The arrival marks the first full aviation regional force allocated to the Operation Atlantic Resolve (OAR) and the US Army Europe.
The helicopters and equipment have been delivered to Greece as part of the 10th Combat Aviation Brigade’s (CAB) nine-month rotational deployment in support of the OAR, which was formed to reassure European allies in the wake of Russia’s invasion in Ukraine.
US Army Europe commander lieutenant general Ben Hodges said: “This is the most successful alliance in the history of the world.
“The port of Thessaloniki is a gateway into Europe, and Atlantic armies could not prosper without our allies.”
The Black Hawk troops will not only train with the US allies and partners but will also function in times of crisis, if required.
Greece US Ambassador Geoffrey Pyatt said: “This is a great opportunity for interactions between Greek and American soldiers in order to develop capacity, share lessons, and hone expertise.”
US military units are currently collaborating with NATO allies and partners in Bulgaria, Germany, Poland, the Baltic states and Romania for rotational deployments focusing on training, exercises and maintenance.
The forward presence of US troops in Europe is expected to reinforce allies, deter adversaries, and ensure the army's presence in case deterrence fails.
Hodges added: “Deterrence is about the agility of the US Army.
“These helicopters came from Fort Drum, New York, and just hours after the aircraft are coming off of the ship they are going to fly away from here and in about three days they are going to conduct an air assault operation in Romania.”
Throughout February and early March, the 10th CAB has been arriving at three seaports and three airports.
Image: UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters and other equipment from the 10th CAB, based at Fort Drum, New York, US, arrived at the Port of Thessaloniki, Greece. Photo: courtesy of Army photo by Spc. Kelsey Little.