YONGSAN GARRISON, South Korea – Soldiers from the 20th Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear, Explosives Command conducted a change of mission and prepared for redeployment Aug. 28 following their participation in the Ulchi Freedom Guardian exercise held in South Korea.
Ulchi Freedom Guardian is designed to keep U.S. and South Korean forces ready to deter aggression on the Korean Peninsula and maintain stability in the Asia-Pacific region.
Defensive in nature, the annual exercise involved 3,000 personnel from military bases in the U.S. and across the Pacific.
The 20th CBRNE Command, based out of Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland, deployed its tactical command post and more than 100 soldiers to the Korean Peninsula for Ulchi Freedom Guardian.
The command also deployed the tactical command post of the 48th CBRNE Brigade, based out of Fort Hood, Texas, along with the commander and staff of the 71st Ordnance (Explosive Ordnance Disposal) Group from Fort Carson, Colorado.
Soldiers and civilians from 20th CBRNE Command train to counter weapons of mass destruction, eliminate CBRN and explosive ordnance threats, and defeat improvised explosive devices. Serving on 19 military posts in 16 states, members of the 20th CBRNE Command train and operate with joint, interagency and allied partners around the globe.
"This exercise demonstrates the strength of the ROK-U.S. alliance and the flexibility of the 20th CBRNE Command to deploy and execute CBRNE related missions anytime and anywhere," said 20th CBRNE Commanding General Army Brig. Gen. JB Burton, the former deputy commanding general for maneuver of the South Korea-based 2nd Infantry Division.
Burton returned to Korea for the exercise. He said the 20th CBRNE Command has built a strong relationship with the Republic of Korea’s Army Chemical, Biological and Radiological Defense Command.
Burton added that his 20th CBRNE soldiers trained together with the ROK Army during Exercise Atropian Phoenix at the National Training Center at Fort Irwin, California.
"It is an honor to serve with our great Republic of Korea allies and our fellow joint service members who defend liberty daily on freedom's frontier. Katchi Kapshida! (Korean for 'We go together')," said Burton, who hails from Tullahoma, Tennessee.