U.S. Army Europe marks its 69th birthday

June 7, 2011

By U.S. Army Europe Public Affairs

HEIDELBERG, Germany -- U.S. Army Europe marked its 69th birthday June 8.

USAREUR came to Europe 69 years ago to fight in a multi-national coalition to win World War II, and stayed in Europe to help European allies maintain their freedom during the Cold War.

Since 1989, USAREUR has transformed from a heavy force postured to win a land war on the plains of Europe to an agile, modern, rapidly deployable force; tailored in Europe to train, to deploy, and to support multiple combatant commanders.

"Today, the Army in Europe is America's strategic forward enabler," said Lt. Gen. Mark P. Hertling, USAREUR's commanding general. "Our Soldiers prevent war by training with multi-national allies, we build trust with our allies of America's resolve and commitment to dignity, and we prepare our own forces for an eventuality along the conflict spectrum. We build Strong Soldiers and Strong Teams!"

The command traces its roots back to January 1942 as American Soldiers opened a command post in Belfast, Northern Ireland, in anticipation of combat in World War II. Those first arrivals were the advance party of Headquarters, V Corps, the centerpiece of USAREUR combat forces.

The formal date on which USAREUR celebrates its anniversary today goes back to the War Department establishment of the European Theater of Operations, U.S. Army, on June 8, 1942. ETOUSA's mission was to conduct planning for the retaking of Europe and exercise operational control over U.S. forces.

Visit www.eur.army.mil/history to read more about USAREUR's history.