- 411th Civil Affairs Battalion (United States)
Infobox Military Unit
unit_name= 411th Civil Affairs Battalion
caption= 411th CA BN coat of arms
United States Army Reserve
role= The BN provides civil-military operations support to maneuver units to minimize civilian interference in military operations, coordinates reconstruction operations, provides cultural expertise and humanitarian aide, and executes functional specialties including public works, public administration, public education, public safety, public health, noncombatant operations, dislocated civilian operations, and civil information management.
command_structure= 304th Civil Affairs Brigade
current_commander= Lt. Col. Bruce Gillette
garrison= Winkler USAR Center, Danbury CT
motto= "Perge Modo, Restitimus"
World War II Vietnam WarOperation Just Cause (Panama) Operation Promote Liberty (Panama) Operation Desert Shield (SW Asia) Operation Desert Storm (Iraq) Operation Provide Comfort (Kurdistan) Operation Uphold Democracy (Haiti) Operation Sea Signal (Cuba) Operation Joint Endeavor (Bosnia) Operation Joint Guard (Bosnia) Operation Joint Forge (Bosnia) Operation Joint Guardian (Kosovo) Operation Noble Eagle (CONUS) Operation Iraqi Freedom (Iraq) I Operation Iraqi Freedom (Iraq) III
identification_symbol_label=Distinctive Unit Insignia
411th Civil Affairs Battalion (411th CA BN) is a
civil affairs(CA) unit of the United States Army. It is based at Danbury, Connecticut. The unit includes Alpha, Bravo, Charlie, Delta and Headquarters Companies, all located in Danbury. On Operation Iraqi Freedom III, the unit spent nearly two billion dollars on reconstruction projects, and collected donations of over 20,000 tons of school supplies for distribution to the Iraqi populace, for which the battalion received the Meritorious Unit Citation.
The history of what is now the 411th Civil Affairs Battalion begins in
1945with the establishment of the 399th Civil Affairs Group, which served in the Pacific Theatre. It was later transferred to the Army Reserveand located in Danbury, Connecticut. The 411th Military Government Company was established in 1949and located in West Hartford, Connecticut. In 1959the unit was re-designated as the 411th Civil Affairs Company and transferred to Hartford, Connecticut. In 1978, with the drawdown of CA forces after the Vietnam War, the 399th was deactivated and its personnel assigned to the newly created Detachment 1 of the 411th CA Company, still located in Danbury. In 1991, the 411th was reconstituted as a battalion and consolidated in Danbury the following year.
The 411th has answered the call on many occasions beginning in
1989when individuals volunteered for service in Operations Just Cause and Promote Liberty in Panama. In December 1990teams were mobilized and deployed to Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm in support of the storied 3rd Armored Division, which was part of the VII Corps effort to liberate Kuwait. Several 411th operators also participated in Operation Provide Comfortto support humanitarian operations in Kurdistan(northern Iraq and neighboring Turkey). Operation Uphold Democracyin Haitiduring 1994saw individuals supporting Special Forcesin humanitarian operations. The following year, 34 soldiers from the 411th deployed to Cubain support of humanitarian efforts for Cuban refugees as part of a Presidential Selected Reserve Call Up. Operation Sea Signalforetold the growing demand for civil affairs operators worldwide.
1995to January 1997, the 411th provided teams for peace implementation in Bosnia and Herzegovinacalled Operation Joint Endeavor. This was followed up by peacekeeping operations from 1997 through 1999in Bosnia and Herzegovina (Operations Joint Guard and Joint Forge). This support for peacekeeping operations set the trend for future CA support of international efforts to aid war-torn countries, exemplified by the 411th’s participation in Operation Joint Guardianin Kosovo from 1999 through 2000.
Immediately following the
September 11, 2001attack on New York City, members of the battalion volunteered to assist in recovery efforts at ‘Ground Zero’ in lower Manhattan. This small volunteer effort marked the beginning of the 411th CA’s contributions to the Global War on Terrorism as part of Operations Noble Eagle and Enduring Freedom.
Operation Iraqi Freedomin February 2003, the 411th CAB provided two direct support detachments in support of numerous units including the 1st Marine Expeditionary Force, 3rd Infantry Division, 82nd and 101st Airborne Divisions, 2nd and 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiments, 1st Armored Division and the Coalition Provisional Authority. Both detachments moved into Iraq on 5 April 2003 in support of combat operations, remaining until March 2004.
Camp Arifjan, Kuwait, personnel from Alpha Detachment worked closely with BG Kern (352nd CACOM commander) and his staff in developing the final OIF Civil Affairs plan. At An Najaf, the Detachment was quickly reconstituted and immediately deployed teams in support of ongoing 2nd ACR field missions in villages surrounding the city. This included establishing a mobile Civil-Military Operations Center.
On April 22, 2003, the Detachment established the first
civil-military operations center(CMOC) in Baghdad, located immediately behind the UN compound. The Detachment coordinated the development of detailed procedures to address issues raised by the local Iraqi population, including establishing lines of communication with the remaining Iraqi government representatives and local Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) in the area in order to address issues of the local populace. Between its opening on 22 April 2003 and its handover to Iraqi personnel in September, the 'UN CMOC' had over 5,800 visitors and handled over 3,900 reports. Reported issues included reports on UXOs, looting, missing persons, requests for assistance, security, and a whole gamut of other topics.
Based upon assessments conducted by its Civil Affairs Teams, Alpha Detachment developed detailed determinations of work required and secured the funding for over 150 public works projects to address deficiencies in the local infrastructure. Over $1 million in Commander's discretionary funds were allocated to pay for these projects. The Detachment generated over 125 humanitarian projects to address the needs of the local populace, including the delivery of 30 tons of food, over 100,000 humanitarian rations, over 5 million litres of water, 8 tons of medical supplies and 8 tons of school supplies.
A/411th CAB took the lead in establishing Baghdad’s first
Internal Displaced Personsrelocation area (then known as Hillsdale). The Detachment coordinated the 1st ID’s IDP program, including the development of the plans to address IDPs located in various Ministry buildings. This included overseeing the construction of 56 housing units for the relocation of over 50 families to Hillsdale from the ministries.
On 19 August 2003, the Detachment was engaged during the terrorist attack on the United Nations compound in Baghdad. Suffering damage to its building and having six soldiers wounded, it immediately reacted to the attack and deployed its personnel to repel a potential second attack as well as to provide aid to the wounded. A/411th personnel were first to arrive at the scene and were instrumental in establishing order out of chaos early at the scene of the attack. Command of the entire operation was the responsibility of A/411th until the later arrival of follow-on units. Many soldiers of the detachment risked their own lives in repeated attempts to save others trapped in the rubble. The actions of detachment personnel were personally recognized by President
George W. Bush, GEN Richard Myers(Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff), LTG James Helmly(Chief, Army Reserve) and Kofi Annan(Secretary General, United Nations).
The Bravo Detachment of the 411th Civil Affairs Battalion holds the distinction of being the first Civil Affairs detachment to enter Iraq as a complete unit. While traveling north with the 3rd ID and the 82nd Division, B/411 conducted CA operations in ten major Iraqi cities including Najaf, Hilla and Karbala. The unit was also part of the first U.S. forces to enter Falujah and Ramadi before settling into Baghdad. B/411 completed over 1,000 projects in southern, western and central Iraq worth in excess of $32 million. The unit was also instrumental in removing over 2,000 war hulks, cleaning city streets of trash and sewage while employing thousands of laborers and distributing hundreds of thousands of dollars to civic employees.
The two detachments redeployed after 13 months, returning in March 2004. The 411th CA also provided 11 trained civil affairs operators for OIF rotation two. In August 2004, the 411th Civil Affairs Battalion made history again by becoming the first unit to deploy twice in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. They were the first unit to enter the country when the war began, and the first unit to return for a second trip.
As a member of Task Force 353 within Special Operations Command Central (Airborne), the 411th Civil Affairs Battalion began arriving in August with their main body arriving in mid September. The battalion accoutered six tactical Civil Affairs Companies for the 1st Infantry Division and 42nd Infantry Division. The unit provided cultural expertise, and was charged with developing the first program of instruction for Iraqi Army Civil Affairs.
The 411th coordinated Operation I CAN, which collected donations of over 20,000 tons of school supplies for direct distribution by maneuver battalions and the Iraqi Army to the children of Iraq. The 411th staffed and ran four out of six ministries at the Regional Reconstruction Operations Center, and scheduled $1,823,371,242 in reconstruction projects. The RROC was recognized by the National RROC as the best in theater and the Pentagon singled it out as the Army’s model for Reconstruction Operations Centers. The battalion also operated three Provincial Civil Military Operations Centers, a Civil Military Coordination Center, the Division Projects Coordination Cell, oversaw the division’s Civil Military Information Center for detainee operations, and provided staffing to the division G5 and G3-G5 Planning Cell.
Over 725 major humanitarian projects were successfully processed totaling in excess of $81,000,000. The 411th CA Battalion personnel developed an effective project which tracked the progress of the programs from inception to completion; and were instrumental in the
Commander’s Emergency Relief Program’s ( CERP) obligation rate improvement from 28% in October 2004 to 65% in April 2005. On OIF III The battalion organized nineteen Civil Affairs direct support tactical teams to provide CMO support at the maneuver Battalion level throughout an area encompassing nine major cities and thousands of smaller towns and villages throughout the four provinces in AO Liberty, a total of 28,300 square miles, overseeing over one and half billion dollars in scheduled reconstruction projects. Tactical Companies of the 411th Civil Affairs Battalion supported numerous kinetic operations such as Operations Attleboro, Baton Rouge, City Park, Forsyth Park, Southern Storm, Niagara Falls, King’s Mountain, Peacemaker, Ad Duluyah Sunrise, Powder River and others.
The Unit recently received the
Meritorious Unit Citation.
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