Croatian artillery joins Battle Group Poland

The Polish-based Battle Group Poland consists of the framework nation provided by the United States’ 3rd Squadron, 2nd Cavalry Regiment, with the Balaklava Troop of British Light Dragoons as additional reconnaissance, and two batteries of air defense artillery, a capability not organic to the squadron, provided by Romania and Croatia.

Croatian artillery joins Battle Group Poland
Croatian artillery soldiers assigned to Volcano Battery finish loading rockets into their Vulkan M-92, Mobile Multiple Rocket Launcher, and wait for further instruction while the battery participates in night iteration of 3rd Squadron, 2nd Cavalry Regiment, squadron live fire exercise at a range near the Bemowo Piskie Training Area, Poland, March 25, 2018 (U.S. Army photo by Spc. Andrew McNeil/ 22nd Mobile Public Affairs Detachment)

As of October 2017, Croatian Volcano Battery is the newest allied force to join Battle Group Poland. The Croatian Volcano Battery adds its capabilities in support of 3rd Squadron, 2nd Cavalry Regiment-Wolfpack. These capabilities include a battery-size contingent and four Vulkan M-92s. The Vulkan M-92 is a mobile multiple rocket launcher that fires 122-mm rockets, capable of engaging targets up to 12 miles. This added force multiplier enhances freedom of movement for 3rd Squadron, 2nd Cavalry Regiment live fire exercise.

The Croatian army participates to two of the four NATO Enhanced Forward Presence Battle Groups in the Baltic Region, a particularly sensitive area considering the tension rise with Russia.

All previous and future exercises rely on communication within the battle group as a battle group. Importantly, the common operating picture and testing of these systems are true measures of success for this four-day exercise. “The recent fire and maneuver training exercise is the culmination to a progressive training plan,” said U.S. Army Lt. Col. Scott Cheney, 3rd Squadron, 2nd Cavalry Regiment and Battle Group Poland commander. “Our goal is to ensure our allies understand Combined Arms Maneuver.”

The U.S.-led battle squadron deployed to North East Poland since October with the mission to defend NATO's eastern boarder along with three other battle groups positioned in Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia. “By training together frequently, we are able to find efficiencies and leverage the unique capabilities each nation brings to ensure we maximize our combat power,” said U.S. Army Maj. Ryan Duffy, 3rd Squadron, 2nd Cavalry Regiment and Battle Group Poland operations officer. “This exercise prepares us and refines our ability to perform our deterrence mission together and ensures our ability to "Fight Tonight."

This is the last multinational training exercise for this rotational deployment that serves to test and improve interoperability. Croatian Volcano Battery is set to redeploy in April. Their deployment with the battle group served as a launch for the first fires coordination exercise outside Croatia. Their performance in deployment operational training and live fire exercises serve to enhance deterrence and defense capabilities of this multinational organization.

Battle Group Poland helps in supporting Atlantic Resolve and in demonstrating the U.S. commitment to the security of NATO and NATO allies. This unique, multinational battle group comprised of U.S., U.K., Croatian and Romanian Soldiers serve with the Polish 15th Mechanized Brigade as a deterrence force in northeast Poland in support of NATO’s Enhanced Forward Presence.