Allied Land Command
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|NATO Allied Land Command|
|Active||November 30, 2012-Present|
|Part of||Allied Command Operations, Casteau, Mons, Belgium|
|Headquarters||General Vecihi Akin Garrison, Sirinyer, Izmir, Turkey|
|Motto||For the Soldier|
|Lt. Gen. Ben Hodges, US Army|
Allied Land Command (LANDCOM) is NATO's most senior land forces command. It is tasked to support of land forces readiness, competency and standardization, including evaluation and certification; providing a land force planning capability; and, when directed by the Supreme Allied Commander Europe (SACEUR), provides the core of the headquarters responsible for the conduct of land operations. Based at Izmir, Turkey, the 350-person headquarters will assume the responsibilities of Allied Force Command Heidelberg in Germany and Force Command Madrid in Spain, which are being deactivated as part of NATO’s transformation.
NATO has had a headquarters at Izmir for decades. Initially the organization there was Allied Land Forces Southeastern Europe, under a United States Army lieutenant general. After the end of the Cold War for a period this became Joint Command Southeast. JC Southeast was superseded by Allied Air Component Command Izmir. From August 11, 2004, the headquarters of NATO's Allied Air Component Command in the south, formerly known as AIRSOUTH, was located in İzmir, Turkey. AAC Izmir was activated at General Vecihi Akin Garrison (GVAG), Sirinyer, Izmir, that year. Significant support to U.S. personnel there is provided by Izmir Air Station. The NATO CC-Air HQ İzmir was responsible to the Allied Joint Force Command Naples based in Naples, Italy. As of June 2012[update], the Commander of the NATO Allied Air Component Command İzmir is Lt. General Ralph Jodice. The NATO Command Structure reorganization made public in mid-2011 reduced the number of land force headquarters from two (Heidelberg and Madrid) to one. The resulting round of inter-allied lobbying over which country would host the remaining headquarters ended with Turkey being given the land command.
LANDCOM was created through the North Atlantic Council to ensure the interoperability of NATO land forces, and placed directly under the Supreme Allied Commander Europe to be the leading voice on land issues within the Alliance. Lt Gen Frederick Hodges, the new commander, told Stars and Stripes that a '..major focus for his headquarters will be to ensure that the tactical lessons learned during a decade of fighting in Afghanistan aren’t lost.'
NATO land forces are an integral partner in six of the eight Joint Operations envisioned in the alliance's strategy and are trained and ready to deliver joint effects as a supported or supporting component or as the controlling headquarters of a joint operation. Land forces must be capable of operating as a key component of a comprehensive approach to a wide range of missions, working with civilian governmental and non-governmental organizations. To achieve the intended effect, LANDCOM will leverage each member nation’s land force capabilities and core competencies and the collective experiences of its officers, NCOs, soldiers and institutions to strengthen the networks, relationships, and effectiveness of all alliance land forces and those of partner nations.
As the link between the NATO Command Structure and the land forces of the NATO Force Structure, LANDCOM provides a framework for training, readiness, interoperability, and standardization. LANDCOM supports the training and readiness efforts of the alliance by recommending priorities, identifying resources for training, and when appropriate, serving as higher headquarters for training exercises. Within Allied Command Operations, LANDCOM is the lead in doctrinal and conceptual discussions and developments relevant to land forces capabilities and will institutionalize the various components and aspects of land operations into integrated communities (such as intelligence, logistics), increasing expertise and interoperability within the NATO force structure. LANDCOM maintains situational awareness and develops understanding across NATO’s area of interest through an operations center and connectivity with the Allied Command Operations' Comprehensive Crisis and Operations Management Center (CCOMC) and other NATO command and control nodes, to enable continuous planning and assessments of existing and potential contingency and operations plans.
The command is the only land-centric headquarters directly under SACEUR's command and control, and is prepared to deploy as the core of the headquarters responsible for any contingency requiring land-centric theatre command and control or for which other nationally-based headquarters might not be available or declared, in accordance with NATO objectives.
- Emine Kart, Izmir base likely to became NATO's Land Component Command, 6 June 2011.