The active Army’s next three security force assistance brigades will be based out west, the service announced on May 18.
The 3rd, 4th and 5th SFABs will be based at Fort Hood, Texas, Fort Carson, Colorado, and Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington, respectively, according to a release.
“We do have what we believe is an objective process that looks at a number of criteria to make an assessment about a particular post or basing decision,” Army Secretary Mark Esper told the Senate Appropriations Committee on May 15.
That Military Value Analysis, Esper told the committee, helps the Army make basing decisions by looking at space, facilities and quality of life on posts.
And for the SFABs, Army leadership prioritized installations that are also home to divisions, with a two-star general on site to provide guidance and facilitate training.
Along those same lines, Army Forces Command will stand up a one-star command for SFAB training and readiness oversight.
Speculation over where the Army would base its final active SFABs came to a head in the weeks before the May 18 decision, with lawmakers in New York, New Mexico and others making a public push for basing at posts in their home states.
Ahead of the announcement, local media near Fort Hood reported in late April that recruiters were on post specifically looking for soldiers to join future SFABs.
There are now 15 cities the Army will choose from to host its new modernization command, the service told Congress, where lawmakers are lobbying to attract it.
The brigades, which formalize the Army’s decades-long mission to train and advise foreign partners, are made up entirely of volunteer post-command officers and NCOs, who complete a selection process that includes Ranger battalion physical fitness standards.
They then attend a six-week training at the Military Adviser Training Academy at Fort Benning Georgia.
So far, the service has the 1st SFAB, based at Fort Benning, mid-deployment to Afghanistan, as the 2nd SFAB stands up at Fort Bragg, North Carolina.
The 3rd and 4th SFABs are scheduled to begin standing up later this year.
The Army also plans to stand up a sixth and final SFAB assigned to the National Guard.