This summer the 2-43 Air Defense Artillery “Warrior” Battalion will pack up their bags and become the first unit from the 11th “Imperial” Air Defense Artillery Brigade to support an annual Air Defense training exercise to take place in Poland. The exercise is an annual event testing the capabilities of a combined NATO air defense force that includes Poland, Slovakia, Latvia, the Netherlands, France, Germany, and Great Britain as well as units from the American Air Defense unit posted in Germany, the 10th Air and Missile Defense Command (AAMDC). The exercise will span two weeks and give all the units involved a chance to participate in a realistic environment that will teach them how to operate across borders of language, nationality and weapons systems.
“Integrating all these weapons systems will be a challenge, especially when every country has their own way of doing things,” said 1LT Zachary Hartzell, the 2-43 Fire Distribution Center (FDC) Officer in Charge. “However training like this is a great opportunity to see what conducting a real-world mission with international partners would be like. Many of these Soldiers have never even stepped outside the United States and now they’ll have to work daily with Europeans to make the mission happen.”
1LT Hartzell and other members of the Warrior team went to Warsaw, Poland in January to attend the mid-planning conference (MPC) for the exercise to iron out the details. Working with representatives from over 12 different countries, to include their comrades from 10th AAMDC, they coordinated various aspects of training, logistics, and communication. The participants gained valuable knowledge about the training exercise as well as about how different working in a foreign country can be from operating at Fort Bliss, Texas. The Warrior Battalion is excited for the challenge and opportunity going to Poland presents them and will represent 11th “Imperial” Brigade, Fort Bliss, and the United Army well to our critical foreign allies and partners.
Story written by: 1LT Shaun C. Bruner, 2-43 ADA BN
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