The most visible phase of NATO’s exercise begins on June 3, 2019, with the deployment of nearly 2,500 German, Dutch and Norwegian troops and some 1,000 vehicles to the field training area in Zagan, Poland.
The exercise will increase and demonstrate the readiness and mobility of a critical element of the NATO Response Force.
The first phase of the exercise began May 24, when NATO alerted its Very High Readiness Joint Task Force, or VJTF.
Within 48 hours, the VJTF’s “Spearhead” battalion was ready to deploy. Three days later the complete VJTF brigade was on standby.
As part of the VTJF, a Spearhead Battalion is comprised of a German, a Dutch and a Norwegian company under German command, which completed final preparations and received the order to deploy.
“Noble Jump is a defensive exercise,” said U.S. Admiral James Foggo, who commands Allied Joint Force Command (JFC) Naples and the NATO Response Force 2019. “It will prove our very high readiness ground troops are ready and rapidly deployable, wherever and whenever needed. Readiness and mobility are key to NATO’s deterrence posture.”
The 1st German-Netherlands Corps, commanded by German Lt. Gen. Alfons Mais, leads the VJTF.
Together, JFC Naples and 1 German/Netherlands Corps led NATO’s Exercise Trident Juncture, the Alliance’s largest exercise since the Cold War, which brought 50,000 troops together in and around Norway during October and November 2018.
The NATO Response Force (NRF) is a multinational force made up of land, air, maritime and special operations components. It is technologically advanced and rapidly deployable. The NRF provides collective defense and a rapid military response in times of crisis. In addition, it can perform peace-support operations, provide protection to critical infrastructure, and support disaster relief. NATO created the NRF in 2002. Overall command belongs to the Supreme Allied Commander Europe, Gen. Tod D. Wolters.
The VJTF troops are part of the NATO Response Force.
Following the Wales Summit in 2014, Allies decided to enhance the NRF by creating an up to 8000-troop strong Spearhead Force within it.
NATO formed the Very High Readiness Joint Task Force to respond to the changing security environment to the east and south of the Alliance’s borders.