This unprecedented mission and brigade came after the 9/11 air attack on the United States that forced the United States of America to defend itself from Missiles. The 1972 ABM Treaty signed with the Soviet Union prevented the United States from defending itself. The United States in June of 2002 withdrew from the ABM treaty, formed NORTHCOM in October 2002, the Missile Defense Agency in January 2002, and MDAA for advocacy and education for the development and deployment of missile defense systems.
The history of the creation of the 100th Missile Defense Brigade is best put forth by the commanding general during that stand-up, MG John Holly, who was designated by the President of the United States, George W. Bush, to deploy an operational ballistic missile defense system by September 30th, 2004 – 33 months were given from announcement to operation.
Since 2004, the 100th Missile Defense Brigade has been on watch 24/7/365 to defend the American homeland from ballistic missile threats. The Missile Defense Element (MDE), located at Schriever Space Force Base, has responsibility for monitoring ballistic missile defense sensors. The 49th Missile Defense Battalion, the element of the 100th stationed at Ft. Greely, AK, is responsible for the operation and security of the ground-based interceptors (GBI). The Fire Director Center (FDC) at Ft. Greely is responsible for the tactical level execution of the ground-based midcourse defense system and the firing of interceptors at incoming ballistic threats. Members of the 100th operate as Tactical Directors, Battle Analysts, Sensor Operators, Weapons Operators, and Communications Operators. At both Schriever Space Force Base and Ft. Greely, there are two sets of these teams of five, MDE 1 and 2 at Schriever and FDC 1 and 2 in Alaska. MDE 1 and FDC 1 primarily respond to real-world events, while MDE 2 and FDC 2 serve for training on the GMD system
“It’s not the systems, you go back to the beginnings of NORAD, beginnings of NORTHCOM, nobody remembers the systems. It’s the people, It’s the visionaries, It is the people you remember and you move with – you follow. You follow grit, you follow great leadership. This country and this mission has changed and we appreciate those first 20 years.”
- Mr. Riki Ellison at the 2023 NORAD and NORTHCOM Missile Warning and Defender of the Year Ceremony in Colorado Springs, Colorado, on October 13th, 2023
Happy Birthday 100th Missile Defense Brigade!