Rukla, Lithuania, 22 March 2017
They work behind the scenes, making sure that engines keep running and sufficient spare parts and supplies are available – the enhanced Forward Presence Battlegroup Lithuania logistic support company. It all runs flawlessly, as each nation brings different capabilities to the table.
The multinational logistic support company is under the command of Captain Jelle N. from Belgium. His German deputy, Captain Björn K., also leads the German logistics team of the enhanced Forward Presence Battlegroup in Lithuania. Many of these soldiers come from 4 Logistic Support Battalion in the Upper Palatinate region of Germany.
Multinational command centre
Support of the battlegroup’s combat forces runs smoothly. “Everything works perfectly. We help each other. We simply don’t get gaps in logistic support since there is always one nation or another that has the required capability,” explains Captain K.
The logistic support company is assisted by the Logistics Command Centre – which is run by Dutch, Belgian and German soldiers, reflecting the multinational nature of the operation.
Hand in hand
“The planning, management and monitoring of logistic support always depend on the type of training or operation planned. We work hand in hand,” says the head of the command centre, Captain Thomas Z.
Working together on a daily basis, they have no language barrier to contend with. Many Belgian and Dutch soldiers speak German. Otherwise they communicate in English.
There’s a lot to do, and they get on with it
The logistic support company soldiers have accomplished a lot since their arrival. First, they had to set up the required infrastructure. In the past few weeks, they have created parking facilities for the combat vehicles and installed a number of container offices as well as three large tents. The latter are about 13 metres high and have a surface area of some 1000 square metres. One tent is being used for cargo holding, the other two for maintenance.
This week, the soldiers are dealing with another challenge. They have to find enough space to store the vehicles and equipment of the Dutch forces arriving in Rukla. The necessary conditions have already been created. The Norwegian soldiers will also arrive in Lithuania in the near future, thereby completing the enhanced Forward Presence Battlegroup Lithuania.
This is a translation of an article by Heiner Bumüller published on