Virginia National Guard Deploying To Poland But Not Texas This Time

On Jan. 28, Lt. Governor Winsome Sears (R) posted on X/Twitter an announcement that has received scant media attention: “Today, I had the opportunity to participate in the send off of our @VaNationalGuard for a deployment in Poland.

For those who need a history or geography refresher, Poland is in Eastern Europe between Russia, Germany and war-torn Ukraine. A flat country, it has few natural defenses and thus has often been carved up among its more powerful neighbors. Seeking an easy target, Hitler invaded Poland on Sept. 1, 1939, thus starting WWII. Poland fell under Soviet Communist domination from the end of WWII until the Iron Curtain fell around 1989.

Seeking details about this recent news, The Roanoke Star reached out to Gov. Youngkin’s spokeswoman Macaulay Porter who consulted Mr. A. A. “Cotton” Puryear, Va. Army National Guard Chief of Public Affairs.

According to Puryear’s prompt responses, “Approximately 70 Virginia National Guard Soldiers assigned to Headquarters, 529th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion, 329th Regional Support Group marked the start of its federal active-duty mobilization with a departure ceremony Jan. 28, 2024, in Virginia Beach, Virginia. The mobilization is expected to last 10-12 months. The troops are currently training in Texas before they head to Poland later [in February].”

Puryear described the purpose as: “The 529th troops will serve under the command of U.S. Army’s 3rd Division Sustainment Brigade to provide sustainment command and control and support to forward-stationed U.S. and allied forces in the region. Their mission will be part of a rotation of forces conducting multinational training and operations with allies and regional security partners to increase military interoperability, build contingency response capabilities and deter adversaries in Europe.”

When asked if this deployment was a decision made by Gov. Youngkin or the Biden administration, Puryear explained, “This is a federal active duty deployment, and the 529th received notification to prepare for the mission about 15 months ago. It is part of a regular rotation of troops in the region, and they will replace a unit from the U.S. Army Reserve with similar capabilities.

“Since Sept. 11, 2001, more than 18,500 VNG Soldiers and Airmen have mobilized across the globe as the combat reserve of the U.S. Army and U.S. Air Force and here in the United States for homeland security missions.”

Since this is a federal active duty deployment, the funding is from the Department of Defense, not Virginia.

As explained here, Gov. Youngkin recently joined more than twenty other states in declaring Virginia’s support of Texas to secure its southern border and repel the mass influx of unvetted, illegal aliens which many have defined as an invasion.

Puryear said no Virginia National Guard are going to Texas at this time, but were there last summer. He elaborates: “The Virginia National Guard sent approximately 110 Soldiers and Airmen to support Operation Lone Star in Texas in July and August 2023. The troops staffed observation posts and conducted roving patrols along the border between Texas and Mexico to observe and detect potential illegal border crossings and criminal activities and reported to Texas law enforcement authorities.”

Go deeper:

Read more about the departure ceremony here:

Read more about the mission here:
–Scott Dreyer

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