December 5, 1995 in Nation/World

Clinton Begins Deploying Troops; Reservists Called Up

Art Pine And Tyler Marshall Los Angeles Times
 

The Clinton administration on Monday began deploying an advance party for the 20,000-member U.S. ground force headed for Bosnia-Herzegovina and started calling up as many as 3,800 reservists for duty in Bosnia and at support bases in Hungary and Germany.

U.S. Defense Secretary William J. Perry announced the initial troop movement at a news conference. As he did so, some of the advance force of 1,465 U.S. military personnel began arriving in Bosnia and Croatia to help prepare for the main body of troops, which is expected to enter Bosnia on Dec. 15 or 16.

The 20,000 U.S. soldiers will serve with some 40,000 troops from elsewhere - mostly Britain, France, other North Atlantic Treaty Organization countries and former Warsaw Pact nations - in a potentially dangerous mission to enforce the peace accord worked out in Dayton, Ohio, last month by the three warring Balkan factions.

Psychological operations specialists will be assigned to help persuade civilians to cooperate with the peacekeeping forces, performing such tasks as distributing leaflets. They are expected to be on duty for about 270 days, the maximum allowed without Congress’ approval.

Perry said that the U.S. soldiers would be going there “to enforce a peace, not to fight a war.” He conceded that the deployment would be risky, but he warned that “the risks to the United States of the war restarting are even greater.”

Pentagon officials said that not all the reserve units put on notice Monday may be called up. Monday’s action was simply to notify the reservists that they might be called to active duty so they can begin intensive training in cold-weather and land-mine operations.

The Defense Department also made public a list of 23 active-duty military units that may be sent to Bosnia, mostly for engineering, psychological operations and minedisposal work.

The NATO peacekeeping force will have a mission that is simple in concept: protecting allied forces in Bosnia, separating the warring armies, establishing demilitarized zones between them and maintaining security.

Perry and other administration officials have expressed hope that dangers to the peacekeeping forces will be minimal because representatives of the three warring factions have endorsed the Dayton peace accord and have pledged to cooperate with NATO troops.

However, officials conceded that the operation will not be risk-free. U.S. and other NATO troops may have to confront terrorists and rogue paramilitary groups, as well as an estimated 6 million land mines - many of which are uncharted - and winter weather.

The 1,465 U.S. troops that arrived in Bosnia on Monday were part of a 2,600-man NATO team sent to set up headquarters facilities and communications and build up transportation hubs.

About half the 2,600 troops, including 735 of the Americans sent there Monday, will go to Bosnia, while the remainder will travel to neighboring Croatia, which will serve as a supply line for the peacekeepers. About 3,000 U.S. troops will serve in staging areas in Hungary.

The 60,000-man NATO-led peacekeeping force will be deployed over three separate districts:

U.S. forces will run the peacekeeping operation in northeast Bosnia, in the area around the city of Tuzla. The British will have charge of northwest Bosnia, near Banja Luka. And the French will command the forces in southern Bosnia, including the capital city of Sarajevo.

The United States also will have some 5,000 military personnel in neighboring Croatia, principally as logistics troops, and about 7,000 in Hungary and Italy, operating staging areas and manning the warplanes that will fly close air-support missions over Bosnia.

MEMO: This sidebar appeared with the story: TROOPS DEPLOYMENTS U.S. deployments for the Bosnia peace enforcement operation, as described Monday by Defense Secretary William Perry: 20,000 combat troops in Bosnia. 5,000 troops for support in Croatia. 7,000 troops for support in Italy and Hungary, including 2,000 to set up a logistics system and 1,000 as an engineering brigade in Hungary. 3,800 reservists, including more than 1,000 members of the Army National Guard and Army Reserve, notified to start preparing for duty in the Bosnia operation.

The 27 U.S.-based active duty units that will be deployed, at least in part: Beale Air Force Base, Calif.: 9th Reconnaissance Wing. Fort Benning, Ga.: 586th Engineer Company (Float Bridge). Fort Bliss, Texas: 41st Explosive Ordnance Disposal Detachment. Fort Bragg, N.C.: Fourth Battalion, 325th Parachute Infantry Regiment; 403rd Transportation Company; 362nd Engineer Company; 319th Military Intelligence Battalion (Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System); 4th Psychological Operations Group; 96th Civil Affairs Battalion; 528th Special Operations Support Battalion; 112th Special Operations Signal Battalion. Fort Campbell, Ky.: 102nd Quartermaster Company; 5th Special Forces Group. Fort Carson, Colo.: 84th Combat Stress Detachment, 10th Special Forces Group. Fort Hood, Texas: 303rd Military Intelligence Battalion. Fort Lee, Va.: 54th Quartermaster Company. Fort Lewis, Wash.: 1st Special Forces Group. Fort Meade, Md.: 55th Signal Company (Combat Camera). Fort Riley, Kan.: 55th Engineer Company (Medium Girder Bridge). Fort Sam Houston, Texas: 546th Explosive Ordnance Disposal Control Team. Fort Sill, Okla.: 61st Explosive Ordnance Disposal Detachment. Hunter Army Airfield, Ga.: 3rd Battalion, 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment. Hurlbert Field, Fla.: 823rd Civil Engineering Squadron (Red Horse). Little Rock Air Force Base, Ark.: 314th Operations Group. Offutt Air Force Base, Neb.: 55th Wing. Pope Air Force Base, N.C.: 23rd Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron.

No Army Reserve and Army National Guard Units from Idaho or Washington state have been notified to begin training for possible deployment.

This sidebar appeared with the story: TROOPS DEPLOYMENTS U.S. deployments for the Bosnia peace enforcement operation, as described Monday by Defense Secretary William Perry: 20,000 combat troops in Bosnia. 5,000 troops for support in Croatia. 7,000 troops for support in Italy and Hungary, including 2,000 to set up a logistics system and 1,000 as an engineering brigade in Hungary. 3,800 reservists, including more than 1,000 members of the Army National Guard and Army Reserve, notified to start preparing for duty in the Bosnia operation.

The 27 U.S.-based active duty units that will be deployed, at least in part: Beale Air Force Base, Calif.: 9th Reconnaissance Wing. Fort Benning, Ga.: 586th Engineer Company (Float Bridge). Fort Bliss, Texas: 41st Explosive Ordnance Disposal Detachment. Fort Bragg, N.C.: Fourth Battalion, 325th Parachute Infantry Regiment; 403rd Transportation Company; 362nd Engineer Company; 319th Military Intelligence Battalion (Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System); 4th Psychological Operations Group; 96th Civil Affairs Battalion; 528th Special Operations Support Battalion; 112th Special Operations Signal Battalion. Fort Campbell, Ky.: 102nd Quartermaster Company; 5th Special Forces Group. Fort Carson, Colo.: 84th Combat Stress Detachment, 10th Special Forces Group. Fort Hood, Texas: 303rd Military Intelligence Battalion. Fort Lee, Va.: 54th Quartermaster Company. Fort Lewis, Wash.: 1st Special Forces Group. Fort Meade, Md.: 55th Signal Company (Combat Camera). Fort Riley, Kan.: 55th Engineer Company (Medium Girder Bridge). Fort Sam Houston, Texas: 546th Explosive Ordnance Disposal Control Team. Fort Sill, Okla.: 61st Explosive Ordnance Disposal Detachment. Hunter Army Airfield, Ga.: 3rd Battalion, 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment. Hurlbert Field, Fla.: 823rd Civil Engineering Squadron (Red Horse). Little Rock Air Force Base, Ark.: 314th Operations Group. Offutt Air Force Base, Neb.: 55th Wing. Pope Air Force Base, N.C.: 23rd Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron.

No Army Reserve and Army National Guard Units from Idaho or Washington state have been notified to begin training for possible deployment.


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