Commander, Task Force Shore Battle Space and Navy Region EURAFCENT Detachment Bahrain Holds Change of Charge

By Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Jordan Crouch | August 30, 2020

MANAMA, Bahrain --

Commander, Task Force Shore Battle Space (TF-SBS) and Navy Region Europe, Africa, Central (EURAFCENT) Detachment Bahrain held a change of charge ceremony onboard Naval Support Activity (NSA) Bahrain, Aug. 26.

Capt. Keith Woodley relieved Capt. Gadala Kratzer as commander of TF-SBS and officer in charge (OIC) of Navy Region EURAFCENT Detachment Bahrain.

Capt. Greg Smith, commanding officer of NSA Bahrain, presided over the ceremony and highlighted the many accomplishments of Kratzer and the command’s staff.

“The Shore Battle Space mission is very important and enables us to provide a landside presence here, that empowers us to work with our regional partners and allies so that the U.S. Navy can continue doing our mission at sea,” said Smith.

During his tenure, Kratzer lead a staff of 12 personnel and directed more than 1,100 security forces from five commands comprised of U.S. Navy, Marine Corps and Air Force personnel across Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates.

TF-SBS coordinated region-wide joint and bilateral security and force protection operations and exercises in Bahrain and UAE with U.S. naval security and harbor patrol units, Army air defense artillery units, regional and coalition partner forces and U.S. embassies.

Kratzer thanked his team for their hard work before turning command over to Woodley.

“None of this is possible without the support of my team,” said Kratzer. “I have been blessed since I’ve been a part of this task force. It’s a team effort.”

Upon taking command Woodley spoke about the capability of his new team.

“This is a great staff and I’m looking forward to working with each and every one of them,” said Woodley.

TF-SBS and Navy Region EURAFCENT Detachment Bahrain coordinates all facility and security support for shore installations in the U.S. 5th Fleet area of operations (AOO).

The U.S. 5th Fleet AOO encompasses about 2.5 million square miles of water area and includes the Arabian Gulf, Gulf of Oman, Red Sea and parts of the Indian Ocean. The expanse is comprised of 20 countries and includes three critical choke points at the Strait of Hormuz, the Suez Canal and the Strait of Bab al Mandeb at the southern tip of Yemen.