1st Brigade Combat Team (327th Infantry Regiment),
101st Airborne Division (Air Assault)
1st Brigade, 327th Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division
The 1st Brigade's mission is to deploy within 36 hours worldwide to close with the enemy by means of fire and maneuver to destroy or capture him, or to repel his assault by fire, close combat or counterattack. The unit's emblem has many parts. The shield is blue for infantry. Blue is also the color of the South Carolina state flag, the location of 327th Infantry between World War I and II.
The palmetto tree also alludes to South Carolina. The red bend is taken from the arms of the ancient province of Lorraine, and the fleurs-de-lis indicate the regiment's three World War I campaigns. The nebula delineation, a heraldic simulation for clouds, represents the regiment's service as 327th Glider Infantry in World War II. The two spearheads surmounting the nebula pierced disc indicate the unit's compat glider landings and it's aggressive action in Normandy and in Rhineland. The oak leaves and acorn cannote Bastogne in the Ardennes. The pierced white disc further alludes to the snow and to encircled Bastogne during Battle of the Bulge, for which the organization was awarded the Presidential Unit Citation (Army). The colors red and green refer to the regiment's French and Belgian decorations.The 4th Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault); cased their colors during an inactivation ceremony, 25 April 2014. The 1st Battalion and 2nd Battalion realigned with 1st Brigade and 3rd Brigade.
The major organic unit within the 1st Brigade is the 327th Infantry Regiment, composed of "Above the Rest", and "No Slack" Battalions. The Regiment traces its history to the 164th Infantry Brigade of the 82nd Infantry Division on 17 September 1917 at Fort Gordon, Georgia. That unit, too, has a long history of campaigns and honors. Following transformation to the US Army's modular system in 2004, the 1st Brigade Combat Team subsequently consisted of the 1-327th Infantry, 2-327th Infantry, 1-32nd Cavalry (RSTA), 2-320th Field Artillery, 426th Brigade Support Battalion, and the 1-101st Special Troops Battalion (formerly the 326th Engineer Bn.). The STB included elements of the 311th Military Intelligence Battalion, the 501st Signal Battalion, an organic Military Police platoon, and the former 326th Engineers. The 1st BCT remained unique in that it was also the headquarters for the 327th Infantry Regiment.
The "Bastogne" Brigade was involved in three conflicts and one peacekeeping mission: World War I, Vietnam, Southwest Asia, and Haiti. During World War II, it participated in the following campaigns: Normandy (with Arrowhead), Ardennes-Alsace, Rhineland (with Arrowhead), and Central Europe. The "Bastogne" Brigade, consisting of 1st and 2nd battalion, 327th Infantry Regiment and 2nd Battalion, 502nd Infantry Regiment deployed to Vietnam from July 1965 to December 1971. The Brigade participated in numerous campaigns to include the Defense: Counteroffensive Phases I-IV; Tet Counteroffensive; Tet 69 Counteroffensive; Summer-Fall 1969; Winter-Spring 1970; Cease-Fire, and Consolidated Phases I and II.
The Brigade redeployed back to Fort Campbell in January 1972 and subsequently became an Air Assault Infantry Brigade. The call came once again on 29 August 1990. The "Bastogne" Brigade was ordered to deploy to Saudi Arabia to defend against Iraqi aggression. This culminated with the Brigade spearheading the largest Air Assault in history into Forward Operating Base Cobra in Iraq. Kuwait was liberated, and again the "Bastogne" Brigade was victorious. From October 1995 to March 1996, the "Bastogne" Brigade provided the nucleus for JTF Bastogne, a combined, joint task force, that served in Port Au Prince, Haiti as part of the United Nations Peacekeeping mission. JTF Bastogne provided a country-wide quick reaction force and ensured security during their presidential election and inauguration.
On 1 March 2003, the Bastogne Brigade deployed to Kuwait in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. The soldiers of the 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault) claimed their piece of the ground in Kuwait in early March 2003 by raising their brigade banner, and began learning how to operate in the arid climate. As soon as the 1st Brigade, 101st Airborne Division left the cold of Fort Campbell, Kentucky, and claimed residence at Camp Pennsylvania, they began battling the heat. It took until March 2 for all of the units to depart Fort Campbell. Elements of the brigade began rolling into the camp March 3, setting up in the area previously occupied by the 3rd Infantry Division from Fort Stewart, Georgia. Due to the influx of troops coming into Kuwait, transportation was not immediately available to bring them to their camp and many of them had to endure a long stay at Camp Wolf, the small reception facility just off the airstrip.
Almost one month later the brigade began its assault on the city of An Najaf, securing that city and other key Shiite cities for the conduct of the first Shia Naj in more than 30 years. Bastogne's Soldiers destroyed hundreds of Saddam's Fedayeen fighters, ultimately liberating the 840,000 residents of the city. While fighting to protect the lives of the residents, they were also protecting the supply lines of the 3rd Infantry Division. Synchronizing the efforts of conventional, special operations and Iraqi forces, as well as using the full range of precision combat power, the Brigade dispelled the myth that American troops were unprepared for combat in urban terrain. The Bastogne Brigade then continued north conducting combat, SASO (stability and support operations), and air assault operations in the Tigris River Valley in Nieveh Province just south of Mosul. While stationed at FOB Q-West, near Qayyarah, the Bastogne Brigade conducted operations against Ba'ath part loyalists, insurgents and terrorist groups, and carried out a massive reconstruction effort to rebuild a broken Iraq.
On 17 September 2004, 87 years to-the-day after the birth of the 327th Infantry Regiment, the 1st Brigade reorganized into a Unit of Action under the Army's Modular Transformation. The Brigade reorganized from a three infantry-battalion brigade into a six-battalion Brigade Combat Team, becoming more self-sufficient by incorporating new support units into its ranks.
In September 2005, the newly-formed Bastogne Brigade Combat Team (BCT) deployed to Northern and Eastern Iraq in support of the Global War on Terrorism. The BCT assumed responsibility for the most ethnically diverse area in Northern Iraq, centered on the city of Kirkuk. During Operation Iraqi Freedom 05-07, the 1st BCT developed, trained and validated the 2nd and 3rd Brigades, 4th Iraqi Army Division, resulting in both brigades assuming responsibility for their geographic areas. The BCT also established, developed and trained the 1st Strategic Infrastructure Brigade to take responsibility and control the critical national infrastructure in the province. The 1st BCT conducted numerous combat operations targeting insurgents and terrorists, including four multi-Brigade level operations, resulting in a more stable and secure environment in Northern Iraq. The 1st BCT left Iraq in September 2006 with Iraqi forces firmly in the lead in its area of operation and the Iraqi Government able to provide basic services to the citizens of Iraq. As of 2008, 1st BCT remained stationed in Iraq.
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