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Combat aviation brigade created in Iraq

By ALLISON BATDORFF | STARS AND STRIPES Published: October 8, 2007

BALAD, Iraq — A new Army combat aviation brigade is being created on the fly in Iraq.

About 700 soldiers in 12th Combat Aviation Brigade, based in Katterbach, Germany, will create a temporary aviation brigade for the 4th Infantry Division when it arrives in Baghdad in December.

This means the new brigade needs to be up and running in two months.

The 12th CAB has been in Iraq at Logistics Support Area Anaconda for a few months, which makes it easier, Col. Timothy Edens, the brigade’s commanding officer, said Friday.

“I think they’ll be able to pick up the mission quicker than starting over again with a new group,” Edens said.

The Headquarters and Headquarters Company, Task Force Storm, and 412th Aviation Support, 4-3 Air Cavalry will move to Camp Taji, while an Army aviation unit from Alaska will cover the home front in Iraq.

“This is typical — the Army does this for a living,” Edens said. “We adjust the battlefield for the current conditions.”

“Surge” troops are getting ready to leave, and the Army wants to do more with less without extending troops or pushing up deployments, Edens said.

“Right now, all indications of violence are down,” Edens said.

The new brigade will be temporary, lasting only eight months until 4th ID’s own aviation brigade is ready to deploy again.

And some of the nuts and bolts — like the name of the new brigade — are still up in the air.


Spc. Isaac Mendoza of the 12th Combat Aviation Brigade readies for flight.
ALLISON BATDORFF / S&S

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