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First Army takes over mobilization nationwide

FORT GILLEM, Ga. (Army News Service, Jan. 18, 2006) - First U.S. Army’s training mission expanded Jan. 16 to include training, readiness oversight and mobilization for U.S. Army Reserve and National Guard units throughout the continental United States and two U.S. territories.

The transition of the expanded geographic mission began in mid-December with the transfer of authority between First Army and Fifth Army for the Western United States occurring Monday.

Part of Army Transformation

The Army’s transformation necessitated restructuring the roles and missions of First Army and Fifth Army, officials said, to support reserve-component modularity and the Army Force Generation process known as ARFORGEN.

U.S. Army Forces Command is establishing First U.S. Army/Training and Readiness Oversight, and Mobilization Command (Provisional) as the multi-component headquarters responsible for the training and readiness oversight of reserve-component forces throughout the ARFORGEN process.

First U.S. Army will also be responsible for the mobilization of all reserve-component conventional forces in the continental United States, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Honoré: No gaps to be accepted

Lt. Gen. Russel L. Honoré, commanding general of First U.S. Army, said that the transition must be accomplished “with no gaps or degradation in training of the Army National Guard and Reserve units at any mobilization station.”

First U.S. Army’s expanded mission supports ongoing transformation efforts as the Army restructures its force into modular units. This restructuring changes the current division-based force into a brigade-based force.

The new modular combat and support units are more self-sufficient, more readily deployable, and easily combined with other Army and Joint forces, officials said. They said the purpose of Army Force Generation is to provide a continuous output of expeditionary, campaign-quality forces capable of full-spectrum operations.

Previously, First Army trained, mobilized and deployed U.S. Army Reserve and National Guard units in the eastern United States, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Fifth Army becomes ARNORTH

First Army also conducted Homeland Defense in support of national objectives as well as providing Department of Defense support of civilian authorities, such as relief efforts after Hurricane Katrina.

Fifth U.S. Army, Fort Sam Houston, Texas, has assumed the DSCA responsibility nationwide and will also be known as U.S. Army North, or ARNORTH, under U.S. Northern Command.

First Army to have East, West HQs

In its new role, First U.S. Army will continue to report directly to FORSCOM, Fort McPherson, Ga., and will have two subordinate multi-component headquarters -- one training division in the western United States and one training division in the East. When established, these two divisions will support Reserve Component training, readiness and mobilization. Additionally, each western state’s senior Army advisor to the Army National Guard; the 75th Training Support Division in Houston, Texas; and the 91st Training Support Division at Camp Parks, Calif.; will be reassigned as part of First U.S. Army.

The western divisions will join with the 78th Training Support Division in Edison, N.J.; the 85th Training Support Division in Arlington Heights, Ill.; and the 87th Training Support Division in Birmingham, Ala., already assigned to First Army.

(Editor’s note: Information provided by First U.S. Army Public Affairs.)

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