THE TIMES KUWAIT REPORT
The opening of five new army warehouses in Camp Arifjan to equip and enhance the US army’s capabilities to protect Kuwait and regional allies reflects the long-term US commitment to Kuwait and the region, said Jim Holtsnider, Chargé d’Affairs at the US Embassy, while addressing media personnel during the inauguration of the warehouses last week.
Pointing out that the five new warehouses built at a value of $27 million reinforced the long-term US commitment and the strong partnership with Kuwait, he added these facilities would be in use for many years to come. The warehouses were established with joint US-Kuwaiti funding to support defence capabilities in Kuwait, and were implemented by US military engineers in cooperation with local contractors. The new warehouses are air-conditioned and accommodate about 500 pieces of military equipment to maintain combat ready equipment in strategic locations around the world.
Noting that some areas in the region still had security challenges, Mr. Holtsnider said these could be addressed by working with partners, including Kuwait, through joint exercises which included exercises on land, sea, and air to maintain the readiness of the forces in the region to face any emergency.
Stressing his country’s commitment to training partners and allies in the region, he added that the “US is also very interested in humanitarian relief efforts with partners such as Kuwait, and the new warehouses allow us and our Kuwaiti partners to store humanitarian supplies to respond to events like the earthquake in Turkey”.
Meanwhile Colonel Waleed Abdullah Al-Zawawi, of the Joint Operations Authority in the Kuwaiti army, said that his participation in the opening of the new warehouses in Camp Arifjan was a good opportunity for the Kuwaiti army to associate with the US army and witness the achievement after the project’s conclusion.
He added that they are all proud to represent the Kuwaiti army during the occasion, especially in the atmosphere of Ramadan, and they always aspire to be the best. bout the possibility of exercises between the two armies in the near future, he referred to the permanent joint coordination of training sessions every year, with a schedule agreed upon by both parties. The training sessions are from September to April every year, and the last one was the liberation training with the participation of the ground forces with the US Army.
When asked about the readiness of the Kuwaiti army to face dangers or challenges in the region, he replied, “The Kuwaiti army was always ready to follow up on all events and is constantly informed of all military events in the region, and is prepared for any challenges, whether at the regional or global level.”
The commander of the US Army Corps of Engineers at Camp Arifjan, Lieutenant Colonel Rick Childers, stressed the importance of precaution against those who threaten the two countries’ friendship and the lasting stability of future generations. He noted “The US Army Corps of Engineers, along with its Kuwaiti partners, built these warehouses to provide the state with the mechanisms so that they are ready when needed by our allies and friends in the region.”
He stressed that the five APS warehouses are more than just storage facilities, “They are a symbol of security and highlight the achievable military integration and bilateral security cooperation between Kuwait and the United States.” He added that it was the product of close collaboration between the Kuwaiti Armed Forces, the Department of Defense, and the US Army of Engineers.
“When you choose US engineering agencies as agents to build your design, you know you’re getting quality. You’re getting sustainable infrastructure designed and built by a team of professionals. You get a loyal and trusted partner committed to delivering winning engineering solutions. Our experts ensure that we plan, design, build, and deliver exceptional results on schedule, safely and on budget,” he stated.
Lt.Col. Childers added, “We rely heavily on our partners and the relationships that we build at all levels to accomplish our mission with our partners in the region’s support group.” These warehouses will ensure that the soldiers will get what they need promptly, and also provide the necessary environmental protection for the equipment needed to carry out more medium and large-scale exercises with regional partners.
Commander of 401st Army Field Support Brigade Col. Thomas Boland explained the importance of the warehouses adding that these sites would provide indoor protective storage from environmental elements to over 500 pieces of army pre-position rolling stock and materiel, increasing the army’s ability to rapidly project combat power and deliver readiness to warfighters globally. These new warehouses are the new benchmark and a clear improvement to storing equipment outside in the desert-like environment,” he said.
“Construction of the 320,000 square feet of usable space began in January 2020 at a price tag of $27 million that our host nation partners graciously provided as part of our DCA. Without the commitment of our reliable and steadfast partners, we would not be here today. The Kuwaitis have graciously supported American forces in this country for over 32 years now,” said the commander.