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Return of Forces to Germany


History   1969-1993

Exercise Reforger (Return of Forces to Germany) was an annual exercise conducted, during the Cold War by NATO. The exercise was intended to ensure that NATO had the ability to quickly deploy forces to West Germany in the event of a conflict with the Warsaw Pact.

    The Reforger exercise itself was first conceived in 1967. The Johnson administration announced plans to withdraw approximately two divisions from Europe during 1968. As a demonstration of its continuing commitment to the defense of NATO and to illustrate its capability of rapid reinforcement, a large scale force deployment was planned that would deploy a division or more to West Germany in a regular annual exercise. The first such exercise was conducted beginning on 6 January 1969. These exercises continued annually past the end of the Cold War, except for the year 1989, until 1993. Reforger 1988 was billed as the largest European ground maneuver since the end of World War II as 125,000 troops were deployed.

    Reforger was not merely a show of force—in the event of a conflict, it would be the actual plan to strengthen the NATO presence in Europe. In that instance, it would have been referred to as Operation Reforger. Important components in Reforger included the Military Airlift Command, the Military Sealift Command, and the Civil Reserve Air Fleet.

    The US Army also increased its rapid-reinforcement capability by prepositioning huge stocks of equipment and supplies in Europe at POMCUS (Prepositioning Of Material Configured in Unit Sets) sites. The maintenance of this equipment has provided extensive on-the-job training to reserve component support units.

    The first exercise began in January 1969 with 17,000 Soldiers, the last ended in May 1993 with 7,000. The largest exercise was in 1988 which included 124,800 Soldiers.

Reforger Names


Reforger I  Carbide Ice

Reforger II  Certain Thrust

Reforger III Certain Forge

Reforger IV Certain Shield

Reforger V  Certain Charge

Reforger 74 Certain Plegde

Reforger 75 Certain Trek

Reforger 76 Gordian Shield

Reforger 76   Lares Team

Reforger 77 Carbon Edge

Reforger 78 Certain Shield

Reforger 79 Certain Sentinel

Reforger 80 Certain Rampart

Reforger 81 Certain Encounter

Reforger 82 Carbine Fortress

Reforger 83 Confident Enterprise

Reforger 84 Certain Fury

Reforger 85 Central Guardian

Reforger 86 Certain Sentinel

Reforger 87 Certain Strike

Reforger 88 Certain Challenge

Reforger 89 None

Reforger 90 Centurion Shield

Reforger 91 CPX Certain Shield

Reforger 92 CPX Certain Caravan

Reforger 93 CPX Chariot Fury

***Pending Update***

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