THAAD soldiers, system returns to U.S. following European deployment

Aug. 9, 2019

Printable Press Release   (Related News Release)
STUTTGART, Germany —

Soldiers assigned to the 69th Air Defense Artillery Brigade, 32nd Army Air and Missile Defense Command, a U.S. Army Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) task force, will begin redeployment to Fort Hood, Texas, Friday from Romania where they have been supporting NATO Ballistic Missile Defense since April.

While deployed, the THAAD integrated into the existing NATO BMD architecture for a period of scheduled maintenance and updates on the Aegis Ashore Missile Defense System. This preplanned and temporary THAAD deployment demonstrated U.S. commitment to the defense of our allies and provided deterrence against potential adversaries outside the European theater.

Upon the completion of the maintenance and updates on the Aegis Ashore system, the U.S. assumed operational control of the THAAD system from NATO’s Allied Air Command.

THAAD is a land-based element of the Ballistic Missile Defense System. It is a globally transportable, rapidly deployable capability to intercept and destroy ballistic missiles inside or outside the atmosphere during their final, or terminal, phase of flight. This ability to intercept enemy missiles at high altitudes mitigates effects before they can reach the ground.

The scheduled update to Aegis Ashore Romania was part of regular updates taking place on all U.S. Aegis systems. The update did not add any offensive capabilities to the Aegis Ashore Missile Defense System.

Aegis Ashore Romania is an important part of the European Phased Adaptive Approach, which is designed to protect European NATO allies and U.S. deployed forces in the region against the growing threat posed by the proliferation of ballistic missiles outside the Euro-Atlantic area. This site provides a defensive capability to deter future conflicts, and to defend ourselves, and our NATO allies, should deterrence fail.

U.S. European Command is one of two U.S. forward-deployed geographic combatant commands whose area of focus spans across Europe, portions of Asia and the Middle East, and the Arctic and Atlantic oceans. The command is comprised of more than 60,000 military and civilian personnel, and is responsible for U.S. defense operations and relations with NATO and 51 countries. For more information about U.S. European Command, visit

  • U.S. European Command