Poland’s President Andrzej Duda marked the conclusion of the Dragon-19 military exercise, on Tuesday, promoting two Polish officers to the rank of generals so that they may perform important duties within the NATO framework.
The first of the officers promoted to the rank of brigade general, Dariusz Lewandowski is the commander of the 21st Highland Rifle Brigade that has been undergoing training in the Land Units’ Training Centre in Orzysz.
During the Dragon-19 military training, the Brigade was certified and included into the NATO’s Very High Readiness Joint Task Force (VJTF), which is a "Spearhead Force" able to deploy at short notice to answer threats against NATO sovereignty.
Piotr Błazeusz is the second officer promoted to the rank of general. He was also designated deputy Chief of Staff for Planning at the NATO Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE).
“Very serious tasks, indeed, await you gentlemen generals,” said Poland’s President, adding that the promoted officers are greatly experienced and fit to carry the tasks out with flying colours.
The promotions and certification of the 21st Highland Rifle Brigade are a significant step ahead of the next year when Poland will maintain command over the SHAPE. The Brigade will become the bedrock for the SHAPE’s command.
As many as 18,000 soldiers representing 12 NATO states took part in the Dragon-19 military exercise at Poland’s training areas. 15,000 of them were Polish Army soldiers. Poland’s Territorial Defense Force (WOT) also took part in the drill.