Eygelshoven is Army Materiel Command Headquarters Combat Equipment Group-Europe. Its mission is to support the Army's global power projection strategy by managing prepositioned equipment and materiel in the European theater of operations. CEG-E's responsibilities encompass the receipt, accountability, repair, maintenance, configuration into unit sets, storage, issuance and reconstitution of items ranging from full-sized vehicles to spare parts. In recent years, one of its primary tasks has been to redistribute stocks to other worldwide APS regions.
In August 1998 it was announced that, as part of the Department of the Army's prepositioned stocks (APS) drawdown plan, two installations in Central Europe would be returned to the host nations, and one site will be reduced. The APS sites scheduled for closure were Coevorden, The Netherlands and Zutendaal, Belgium. The site scheduled for reduction is Eygelshoven, The Netherlands. The strategy engaged in the reshaping of the APS in Europe optimizes long-term U.S. interests, while also recognizing possible operational and resource constraints. The United States was cognizant of the unsettling effects of this decision for highly valued local employees at these installations. The realignment was completed in January 2000.
In April 2001, CEG-E received a request from AMC Forward-Southwest Asia's Combat Equipment Group-Qatar for the delivery of a large load of equipment. To fill the request, CEG-E had to withdraw equipment from four of its storage facilities, including the Combat Equipment Battalion-Livorno in Italy. It was then arranged that the MS Green Dale, the ship making the journey from the port of Rotterdam in The Netherlands to the port of Umm Sai'd in Qatar, would make a stop in Italy. Employees at CEG-E's storage facilities prepared the equipment identified for shipment by completing technical inspections, performing required repairs and maintenance, painting vehicles in desert camouflage and, in some cases, disinfecting it to prevent the spread of foot-and-mouth disease. The equipment was then sent via road and rail to port, where crews from CEG-E facilities performed final quality assurance checks and any required repairs, including the replacement of a fuel tank on a truck.
In December 2016 the US started moving tanks to a storage facility in the Netherlands in a bid to “deter" Russia, amid the biggest NATO buildup in Europe since the Cold War. A total of 1,600 vehicles were due to be stored at a six-warehouse complex in the southeastern village of Eygelshoven, near the Belgian and German borders. The Eygelshoven facility was originally opened in 1985 during the Cold War, when it was used by US troops to practice drills in case of a possible Soviet attack.
Abrams Tanks, Bradley Fighting Vehicles and Paladin artillery have already started arriving in what is part of a $3.4 billion Congress-approved scheme to increase NATO military capability in Europe. Storage sites are also planned to be reopened in Poland, Belgium and Germany.
The National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2017, which was approved by Congress on December 8 but had yet to be signed by Barack Obama, approved a $3.4 billion spending plan to boost European defenses. The Baltic states, as well as Poland, have said they have been greatly alarmed by the crisis in Ukraine and fear “Russian aggression" on their territories.
“When visiting the Baltic states, I experienced this for myself. Standing there, near the Russian border, you could feel the tense atmosphere," said General Tom Middendorp, the Dutch chief of defense. “But the Russian military activities are not just a concern for our eastern allies. They are a concern for all of us.... “We are taking proportionate and measured steps to defend our alliance. We want to make sure we are sending a clear signal to Russia that we will not accept any violation of NATO’s territorial integrity."
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