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Feature Stories

NEWS | Jan. 23, 2021

1185th Sentinels Stand Ready to Support Iron Union 14

By Story by Capt. Elizabeth Rogers 1st Theater Sustainment Command

SHUAIBA PORT, Kuwait – For the Army to support hundreds of missions across the globe, they rely on specialized distribution battalions such as the 1185th Deployment and Distribution Support Battalion (DDSB) located at the Port of Shuaiba, Kuwait.

The 1185th DDSB’s role is simple: to receive equipment and provide the transportation means necessary to ship everything out of port through the Arabian Sea. Coordinating the logistics for each mission is not necessarily an easy task. The unit is responsible for overseeing contracts, monitoring all safety measures, and arranging the transportation for all rolling stock and equipment to their assigned locations.

In support of Task Force Spartan’s Iron Union 14 exercise, the 1185th DDSB recently transferred equipment, including Bradley and Abrams tanks, for transportation to the exercise location. The cargo was staged and inspected prior to being loaded on the ship to ensure all safety measures and transportation requirements were met.
Together with help from the port’s strategic partners and contractors, the equipment will be loaded on to the cargo ship with the expectation of a quick arrival to the port in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

The mission of the 1158th DDSB is logistics support to U.S. Central Command by providing mission command for Surface Deployment and Distribution Command while moving, deploying and sustaining armed forces within the area of operations.

“One of the main tasks of the 1158th DDSB is building and fostering relationships with mission partners including CTS- our contractors, vessel agents, Kuwait Port Authority and adjacent units,” said Capt. Deion Stalling, the Terminal Management Team officer in charge for the 1158th DDSB. “The relationship with KPA must be preserved in order to maintain a priority for moving equipment.”

Port operations would not be successful without the coordination of these important partners and relationships.

“We have a philosophy we call whiskey-foxtrot-tango, which is Work, Foster Relationships and Train. We are always going to do the work first and foster the relationship, because without those the mission cannot succeed,” said Stalling.

Iron Union 14 is a recurring, bilateral exercise between Task Force Spartan and the United Arab Emirates Land Forces, designed to strengthen military-to-military relationships through a bilateral approach to future complex national security challenges. Iron Union expands partner capacity and supports CENTCOM and the U.S. Army Central theater security cooperation objectives.

The equipment and rolling stock will go through the same process in the UAE once the Iron Union 14 exercise has concluded. The 1185th DDSB will coordinate with adjacent units in the UAE to receive the stock back at the Port of Shuaiba.