US Army 7th Army Training Command, Exercise Allied Spirit VI, US and Dutch soldiers conduct air assault mission, by Gerhard Seuffert, 17 March 2017 [640px]

NATO Special Forces in Allied Spirit VI

U.S. 7th Army Training Command Hosts Multinational Exercise

Special operations forces joined more than 3,000 service members representing 15 NATO and partner nations to participate in exercise Allied Spirit VI at 7th Army Training Command’s Joint Multinational Readiness Center in Hohenfels, Germany, March 8-31, 2017.

US and European Allies Integrating Special Operations and Conventional Forces

Allied Spirit VI is a multinational exercise training service members from Canada, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Finland, France, Hungary, Germany, Italy, Macedonia, Kosovo, Latvia, the Netherlands, Slovenia, the United Kingdom and the U.S. on integrating special operations and conventional forces to increase their effectiveness.

U.S. Army Maj. Robert Temple, special operations force cell planner at JMRC said:

The primary purpose of this exercise is providing a venue for the 1st Latvian Brigade to train in a Joint Task Force environment and increase their interoperability with both U.S. units as well as other multinational forces. Within that [joint task force] environment they have a replicated special operations component command.

Focus on Estonian Special Forces

During the exercise, soldiers from 1st Battalion, 10th Special Forces Group trained on their advise and assist mission while working closely with Estonian forces, who provided mission command of all special operations elements, and Macedonian special operations mission command elements.

A company commander for 1st Battalion, 10th Special Forces Group explained:

We are here supporting our Estonian Special Operations Task Group brethren. They are one of our long-time partners that we’ve worked with and continue to work with in our Partnership Development Program. Additionally, we get to work with the Latvians which are another one of our primary partner nations.

Building Special Operations Interoperability

The program’s mission is to increase the ability of special operations forces to work together seamlessly while bolstering the capabilities of partner nations within U.S. European Command’s area of responsibility. The 1st Battalion company commander added:

In addition to developing the capabilities of vital NATO allies, we get to exercise a number of our staff battle drills, call for fire and clearance of lines, some of the traditional skills that we have not always been required to participate in within the last 10-15 years of fighting.

JMRC’s Unique Position

JMRC is the only Europe-based Combat Training Center that trains leaders, staffs and units from the U.S. as well as our multinational partners, to conduct unified land operations anywhere in the world. A senior leader of the Estonian special operations training group said:

JMRC is a place where all the conditions are set to conduct different tactical operations in rural and built up areas in as realistic environment as possible during peace time and training with multinational forces.

Source: US Department of Defense

Photo: Soldiers from Netherlands and the United States conduct an air assault mission, during Exercise Allied Spirit VI at 7th Army Training Command’s Hohenfels Training Area, Germany, March 17, 2017. Exercise Allied Spirit includes about 2,770 participants from 12 NATO and Partner for Peace nations, and exercises tactical interoperability and tests secure communications within Alliance members and partner nations. (U.S. Army photo by Visual Information Specialist Gerhard Seuffert)

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