101st Airborne Division

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101st Airborne Division
Patch of the United States Army 101st Airborne Division (Scorpion W2).png
The shoulder sleeve insignia of the 101st Airborne Division.
Active 1918
Country  United States of America
Branch  United States Army
Type Light infantry
Role Air assault[1]
Combat aviation[2]
Foreign internal defense[3][4][5]
Size Division
Part of XVIII Airborne Corps
Headquarters Fort Campbell, Kentucky, U.S.
Nickname(s) "Screaming Eagles" (special designation)
Motto(s) Rendezvous With Destiny
Color of Beret   Black
Mascot(s) Bald eagle (Old Abe)

World War II

Korean War
Vietnam War
Persian Gulf War
Global War on Terrorism

Website Official Website
Commander MG Andrew P. Poppas
Command Sergeant Major CSM Todd W. Sims
Combat service identification badge
101st Airborne Division CSIB.png
Distinctive unit insignia of Headquarters and Headquarters Battalion
101st Airborne Division DUI.png
Flag of the U.S. Army 101st Airborne Division.svg

The 101st Airborne Division ("Screaming Eagles")[6] is an elite modular specialized light infantry division of the United States Army trained for air assault operations.[1] and has been referred to as "the tip of the spear".[7] The 101st Airborne is able to plan, coordinate, and execute brigade-size air assault operations capable of seizing key terrain in support of operational objectives,[8] and is capable of working in austere environments with limited or degraded infrastructure.[8] These particular operations are conducted by highly mobile teams covering extensive distances and engaging enemy forces behind enemy lines.[9] Its unique battlefield mobility and high level of training have kept the Division in the vanguard of America's land combat forces in recent conflicts.[10] More recently, the 101st Airborne has been performing foreign internal defense and counter-terrorism operations within Iraq and Afghanistan.[3][4][5]

The 101st Airborne Division has a nearly century-long history. During World War II, it was renowned for its role in Operation Overlord (the D-Day landings and airborne landings on 6 June 1944, in Normandy, France), Operation Market Garden, the liberation of the Netherlands and, perhaps most famously, its action during the Battle of the Bulge around the city of Bastogne, Belgium. During the Vietnam War, the 101st Airborne Division fought in several major campaigns and battles including the Battle of Hamburger Hill in May 1969.

In mid-1968 it was reorganized and redesignated as an airmobile division, then in 1974 as an air assault division. These titles reflect the division's shift from airplanes as the primary method of delivering troops into combat, to the use of helicopters. Many current members of the 101st are graduates of the U.S. Army Air Assault School. Air Assault School is known as the ten toughest days in the United States Army and the dropout rate is around 50 percent.[11] Division headquarters is at Fort Campbell, Kentucky. In recent years, the division has served in Iraq and Afghanistan. The division is one of the most highly decorated units in the United States Army and has been featured prominently in military fiction.

The 101st is currently the world's only air assault division, capable, in a single lift, of a 4,000-man combined-arms air assault 150 kilometers into enemy territory.[12] It is supported by more than 280 helicopters.[10]:7 This includes three battalions of Apache attack helicopters.[10]:7 At times, additional air assets are assigned to the 101st Airborne during deployment.[10]:7 The 101st Airborne also comprises intelligence support, maintenance and operations elements, support personnel, and artillery specialists.[10]:7 Assisting the 101st Airborne Division is an extensive array of support elements, equipment, and training resources.[10]:63 The 101st is considered a very versatile, very flexible, and a fast-moving unit.[13] The 101st has the capability to move long distances. The 101st can put soldiers down on top of mountains, ridge lines, and behind the enemy forces and can sling-load in artillery pieces for indirect fire.[13] It is considered a unit of choice and it has the ability to secure bridge sites, airfields, and to assist in the combined arms capability for other units.[13]


Current structure

101st Airborne Division order of battle

101st Airborne Division CSIB.png 101st Airborne Division:

  • US Army 101st ABN Div Trimming.svg Division Headquarters and Headquarters Battalion ("Gladiators")
    • A Company ("Slayers") MRF
    • B Company ("Black Dragons")
    • C Company ("Spartans")
    • Headquarters and Support Company ("Sentries")
    • 101st Airborne Division Band ("Pride of the Eagle")

1st Infantry Brigade Combat Team ("Bastogne")(♣)

  • US Army 1st INF BCT-101st ABN Div Trimming.svg Brigade Headquarters and Headquarters Company
  • US Army 1st BN-327th Inf Reg Trimming.svg 1st Battalion, 327th Infantry Regiment ("Bulldogs")
  • US Army 2nd BN-327th Inf Reg Trimming.svg 2nd Battalion, 327th Infantry Regiment ("No Slack")
  • US Army 1st BN-506th INF Reg Oval.png 1st Battalion, 506th Infantry Regiment ("Red Currahee")
  • US Army 1st Sq-32nd Cav Reg.png 1st Squadron, 32nd Cavalry Regiment ("Bandits")
  • US Army 326th Bde Eng Bn Trimming.svg 326th Brigade Engineer Battalion ("Sapper Eagles")
  • US Army 426th Bde Support BN Trimming.png 426th Brigade Support Battalion ("Taskmasters")

2nd Infantry Brigade Combat Team ("Strike")(♥)

3rd Infantry Brigade Combat Team ("Rakkasan")(Torii.svg)

  • US Army 3rd INF BCT-101st ABN Div Trimming.svg Brigade Headquarters and Headquarters Company
  • US Army 1st BN-187th Inf Reg Trimming.svg 1st Battalion, 187th Infantry Regiment ("Leader Rakkasans")
  • US Army 3rd BN-187th Inf Reg Trimming.svg 3rd Battalion, 187th Infantry Regiment ("Iron Rakkasans")
  • US Army 2nd BN-506th INF Reg Oval.png 2nd Battalion, 506th Infantry Regiment ("White Currahee")
  • US Army 1st Sq-33rd Cav Reg Oval.png 1st Squadron, 33rd Cavalry Regiment ("War Rakkasans")
  • US Army 21th Engineer BN Oval.png 21st Engineer Battalion ("Rak Solid")
  • US Army 626th Bde Support BN Oval.png 626th Brigade Support Battalion ("Assurgam")

101st Airborne Division Artillery ("Guns of Glory")(•)

Note: The 2-32nd, 1-320th, and 3-320th now fall under division artillery as of the stand down of the 4th Brigade Combat Team and are no longer controlled by their respective brigades.

101st Combat Aviation Brigade ("Wings of Destiny")(♦)

  • US Army 101st Aviation Bde Trimming.svg Headquarters and Headquarters Company ("Hell Cats")
  • US Army 17th Cavalry Regiment Trimming.svg 2nd Squadron, 17th Cavalry Regiment ("Out Front")
  • US Army 101st Aviation Bde Trimming.svg 1st Battalion, 101st Aviation Regiment ("Expect No Mercy")
  • US Army 101st Aviation Bde Trimming.svg 5th Battalion, 101st Aviation Regiment ("Eagle Assault")
  • US Army 101st Aviation Bde Trimming.svg 6th Battalion, 101st Aviation Regiment (General Support) ("Shadow of the Eagle")
  • US Army 101st Aviation Bde Trimming.svg 96th Aviation Support Battalion ("Troubleshooters")
Note: Concurrent with the inactivation of the 159th Combat Aviation Brigade in 2015, the 101st Combat Aviation Brigade was re-designated as the Combat Aviation Brigade, 101st Airborne Division, bringing it in line with other divisional CAB designations. Also, the inactivation of the 159th CAB also led to the 101st Airborne Division taking on the same configuration as the 10th Mountain Division, a light infantry division.

101st Sustainment Brigade ("Life Liners")[14]

Note: The 101st Sustainment Brigade is the redesignation of the former 101st Airborne Division Support Command. Some subordinate units of the 101st Sustainment Brigade were once part of the 101st Support Group (Corps), a separate, non-divisional unit with a different statement of lineage and honors. It was redesignated on 16 September 2004 as the 101st Support Brigade and then as the 101st Sustainment Brigade on 21 April 2005. The 101st Sustainment Brigade wore its own separate brigade patch until it became a divisional unit in 2016.[15]

In popular culture

See also


  1. ^ a b https://special-ops.org/sof/overall/the-101st-airborne-the-only-unit-in-the-world-that-can-do-this/
  2. ^ "101st Combat Aviation Brigade". Fort Campbell. Retrieved 2017-08-12. 
  3. ^ a b c Block, Gordon (2015-11-06). "Army to Deploy 101st Airborne Soldiers to Oversee Iraqi Army Training". Military.com. Retrieved 2016-08-27. 
  4. ^ a b c Dickstein, Corey. "Carter to Army's 101st: You will prepare Iraqis to retake Mosul". Stripes.com. Retrieved 2016-08-27. 
  5. ^ a b c Bull, Gregory (2016-09-06). "Army to Deploy 101st Airborne Soldiers to Afghanistan". Military.com. Retrieved 2017-01-15. 
  6. ^ "Special Unit Designations". United States Army Center of Military History. 21 April 2010. Archived from the original on 31 May 2009. Retrieved 9 July 2010. 
  7. ^ "Defence News » GATES PRAISES 101ST AIRBORNE AS 'TIP OF THE SPEAR'". Defencenews-online.com. 2010-12-08. Retrieved 2017-02-27. 
  8. ^ a b "101st Airborne Division conducts brigade air assault | Article | The United States Army". Army.mil. Retrieved 2017-01-15. 
  9. ^ Russ & Susan Bryant P.63
  10. ^ a b c d e f Bryant, Russ; Bryant, Susan (2007). Screaming Eagles: 101st Airborne Division. MBI Publishing Company. ISBN 9780760331224. 
  11. ^ http://transcripts.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/0109/20/se.42.html
  12. ^ "History – 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault)". Military.com. Military Advantage. 
  13. ^ a b c "'Screaming Eagles' of 101st have valiant history – Feb. 7, 2003". CNN.com. Retrieved 2017-01-15. 
  14. ^ 101st Sustainment Brigade "Lifeliners", campbell.army.mil, last accessed 18 December 2016
  15. ^ TIOH – Heraldry – 101st Sustainment Brigade Archived 10 June 2011 at the Wayback Machine.
  16. ^ "A Bridge Too Far". 
  17. ^ "Alice in Chains - Rooster". 
  18. ^ "I Am an American Soldier". Iamanamericansoldier.com. Retrieved 2016-08-27. 
  19. ^ "Florida Panthers 2016–present – The (unofficial) NHL Uniform Database". Nhluniforms.com. Retrieved 2016-08-27. 

Further reading

  • Screaming Eagles 101st Airborne Division by Russ & Susan Bryant
  • Burns, Richard R. Pathfinder: First In, Last Out. New York: Ballantine Books, 2002. ISBN 0804116024
  • 101st Airborne in Vietnam The 'Screaming Eagles' by Michael Sharpe & Simon Dunstan
  • Blackmon, Jimmy. Pale Horse: Hunting Terrorists and Commanding Heroes with the 101st Airborne Division. New York: 2016.
  • Screaming Eagles The 101st Airborne Division from D-Day to Desert Storm by Christopher J. Anderson
  • Ailsby, Christopher (2000). Hitler's Sky Warriors: German Paratroopers in Action, 1939–1945. Staplehurst, UK: Spellmount Limited. ISBN 1-86227-109-7. 

External links

  • Website of Fort Campbell and the 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault)United States Army website
  • Army.mil/101stAirborne
  • 101st Airborne Division Association
  • STRIKE on The Military Channel's Warrior POV – Screaming Eagles in Afghanistan (YouTube)
Preceded by
1st Infantry Division
Regional Command East
Succeeded by
10th Mountain Division
Preceded by
82nd Airborne Division
Regional Command East
Succeeded by
1st Cavalry Division
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