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Hungarian Soldier Receives US Military Decoration

Szöveg: Lt. Csaba Búz |  2017. április 25. 9:00

The Deputy Commander of the HDF 5th Bocskai István Infantry Brigade has recently received the Army Commendation Medal.

Lt.-Gen. Frederic Benjamin Hodges (Headquarters, United States Army Europe – USAREUR, Commanding General) personally presented the medal to Col. Dr. Péter Lippai.

The Army Commendation Medal is awarded to soldiers who distinguish themselves while serving with the US Army, or to senior officers of armed forces of friendly nations who distinguish themselves by extraordinary achievement while cooperating with the United States Army.

The approval of the award was made by Col. Michael Foster, a former commander of the US 173rd Infantry Brigade Combat Team (Airborne). Col. Lippai first met the soldiers of the 173rd Brigade three years ago, when he served as commander of the HDF 25/88 Light Infantry Battalion, and after a yearslong gap, cooperation has recently been renewed between the two units.

Alongside the US troops, the HDF 25/88 Light Mixed (light infantry) Battalion has already participated in several joint tasks and events, among them Exercise Warlord Rock 2015, which – apart from the soldiers of the 25/88 Battalion –involved nominated personnel from the Hungarian Defence Forces 24th Bornemissza Gergely Reconnaissance Battalion, the HDF 5th Bocskai István Infantry Brigade and the HDF 34th Bercsényi László Special Operations Forces Battalion. The tasks of the exercise were executed at a number of venues, including Aviano Air Base (Italy), the HDF Pápa Air Base and the Várpalota Military Training Area. The objective of the combined exercise was to prepare the combat, combat support (CS) and combat service support (CSS) forces in allied cooperation for the tasks of planning, organizing and conducting airborne operations.


The Hungarian troops were able to benefit a lot from the combined training events, because they had opportunities to participate in airborne operations of such a scale that Hungary could not carry out on its own under domestic conditions. Operating as a subordinate unit of the Infantry Brigade Combat Team (Airborne), the commanders and their men learned lessons in parachuting and practiced the organization and conduct of airborne operations day and night.


“Whenever a commander receives an award, it is actually meant for the whole unit led by him, not for his person only. No commanders can be successful unless they get ready for their tasks and receive support from their subordinates. And soldiers can only be successful if they are well led", Col. Lippai underlined in speaking about the award.

As deputy commander of the Bocskai Brigade, Col. Péter Lippai met the soldiers of the 173rd Infantry Brigade Combat Team (Airborne) last year too, when the 39th Infantry Battalion umpired by him participated in a command post exercise in Hohenfels, Germany, in subordination to the US Brigade.


Photos by the author and archive