34th Red Bull Infantry Division
The Rosemount-based 34th Red Bull Infantry Division provides training and readiness oversight for ten National Guard brigades with a total of more than 23,000 Soldiers across Minnesota and eight other states.
In Minnesota, the 34ID includes the 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, 34th Expeditionary Combat Aviation Brigade, 84th Troop Command and the 347th Regional Support Group.
Outside Minnesota, the 34th Infantry Division provides training and operational guidance to the 1-112th Security & Support Battalion, ND National Guard; 1-183rd Aviation Battalion, Idaho National Guard; 1-189th Aviation Battalion, Mont. National Guard; 115th Fires Brigade, Wyo. National Guard; 116th Heavy Brigade Combat Team, Idaho National Guard; 141st Maneuver Enhancement Brigade, ND National Guard; 157th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade, Wis. National Guard; 196th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade, SD National Guard; 2nd Brigade Combat Team, Iowa National Guard; and the 32nd Infantry Brigade Combat Team, Wis. National Guard.
The Division also conducts interagency coordination within Minnesota for Defense Support to Civil Authorities.
Building on the Division's previously successful training exercises, in the summer of 2018, the 34th Infantry Division will conduct a Division Warfighter exercise at Camp Atterbury, Indiana. This capstone exercise will validate the division's ability to conduct operations in a high-intensity, decisive action environment.
As the Red Bulls prepare to enter a new century of service to the nation, the 34th Infantry Division will once again prepare the Division Headquarters for deployment overseas. This will require additional training days and an increased operations tempo in the year leading up to the deployment.
2017 marked the centennial anniversary of the 34th Red Bull Infantry Division which was formed in 1917 just after the U.S. entered World War I. Soldiers from the 34ID participated in both world wars and have served in countries across the globe since 2001 in support of the Global War on Terrorism. One hundred years after the Soldiers of the "Sandstorm Division" mustered at Camp Cody, New Mexico, the Red Bulls received word in 2017 of an upcoming deployment. In the fall of 2018 the Division Headquarters will deploy in support of Operation Spartan Shield.
The 34ID took part in two major exercises in 2017. Austere Challenge was a U.S. European Command-led, computer-assisted, command post exercise designed to train multi-combatant command coordination in fictitious scenarios. The last time the 34ID participated in Austere Challenge was 2011. The division also participated in the Talisman Saber exercise, working alongside U.S. Pacific Command and Australian Defense forces to provide command and control of simulated units conducting combat operations.
Exercises such as these ensure the Red Bulls maintain a high standard of proficiency and sustained readiness and build relationships that lay the foundation for successful future operations.
n January 2017 Maj. Gen. Jon Jensen took command of the Division. In November, Jensen was selected by Governor Mark Dayton to become Adjutant General of the Minnesota National Guard. The Division finished the year with a new commander, Maj. Gen. Benjamin Corell, an Iowa Guardsman, who will lead the Division as the headquarters prepares to deploy to Kuwait and Jordan this fall.
The Red Bull Insignia
The symbol of the 34th Infantry Division features a steer skull imposed on the shape of an olla, a Mexican cooking pot. The insignia is a nod to the harsh training conditions at Camp Cody, New Mexico in 1917 while the Red Bulls were preparing to deploy for Europe. The motto of the 34th Infantry Division is "Attack! Attack! Attack!" The war cry characterizes the nature of the Division's combat operations in World War Two.
History of the 34th Red Bull Infantry Division
When the division was formed at Camp Cody, New Mexico in 1917 it was composed of soldiers primarily from the mid-western states of Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, North Dakota, and South Dakota. Ranks were quickly filled by draftees from across the country in preparation for WW1. The 34th Infantry Division of today has expanded to include units from Idaho, Montana, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.
The 34th Sandstorm Infantry Division trained for more than a year in the New Mexican desert in preparation for the Great War in Europe. Infantry and artillery units deployed to France and served honorably. Minnesota’s 151st Field Artillery and Iowa’s 168th Infantry Regiment earned six battle streamers while serving under the 42nd Rainbow Division.
The Sandstorm Division became known as the Red Bull Division during WW2. The 34th was the first US division in Europe and the first to fire artillery against the Germans. The US Army Rangers were formed from largely from Red Bulls at this time and their commander, Capt. William Darby, was a Red Bull. The 34th learned how to fight in the African Campaign and pushed the Germans up the Italian boot in the longest combat tour in the war.
The continuous 100-year lineage of the 34th Infantry Division includes the Cold War period when the men of the 34th Division traded their Red Bull patch for the Viking patch of the 47th Infantry Division. Former Red Bull units were joined by other mid-western units and served at Camp Rucker Alabama as a training division during the Korean War.
These Viking units became Red Bull units once again in 1991. Since 9/11, the 34th Infantry Division has served in most major conflicts including numerous combat deployments and humanitarian missions to Afghanistan, Bosnia/Herzegovina, Egypt, Honduras, and Iraq. The Red Bull 1st Brigade Combat Team served a 22-month tour, the longest National Guard tour in Iraq. Units of the 34th Infantry Division have also served their hometown communities for 100 years in cases of fire, flood, search, and rescue.