By Spc. Warren W. Wright, Jr.
5th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment
HOHENFELS, Germany – A quiet still encompasses the room of a remote building. Only the sound of fresh rain water falling from the roof can be heard through the calm. All of a sudden the loud bang of a door being forced open echoes across the remote dwelling.
Soldiers pour into the building one by one with their weapons drawn as they search for hostile targets. The loud pop of blank rounds being shot off reverberates across the room as Australian soldiers take out their artificial targets.
The Australian soldiers from the 1st Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment spent their Saturday at the range practicing their marksmanship skills prior to arriving at the shoothouse compound of the Joint Multi-National Readiness Center near Hohenfels, Germany to train for military operations in urban terrain. A large percentage of today’s operations occur in urban areas and involve employing counter insurgency tactics.
Australia’s training did not go unnoticed during their vigorous day. Members of the 3rd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division, including Col. David E. Funk, the commander, and Command Sgt. Maj. Alan D. Bjerke, the command sergeant major, arrived in their signature Stryker combat vehicles during the Australian’s training.
During the training, Australian soldiers from 9 Platoon, Charlie Company, 1st Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment received a 3rd Stryker Brigade coin from Bjerke in recognition of their outstanding performance in clearing the training building of hostile targets and for using exceptional tactics during the training operation, said Australian army Pvt. Dean Brimmer, Charlie Company, 1st Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment.
As a member of the American, British, Canadian, Australian and New Zealand Armies Program, the 1st Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment will be working alongside the ABCA armies during Cooperative Spirit 2008. This training mission centers on building counter-insurgency tactics and working on systems that are capable of effectively operating alongside friendly nations.
The 1st Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment is one of the units participating in the multi-national training mission at JMRC in an effort to take full advantage of the experiences of other nations as well as share their experiences with the armies of friendly nations. While at JMRC they will be doing their part to ensure all ABCA armies have the ability to train and operate effectively together in the execution of assigned missions and tasks, an idea known as interoperability.
Since World War II the armies of America, Britain, and Canada have been working together to achieve a cohesion necessary for operations around the world. Now, along with Australia and New Zealand, these countries are working side by side to ensure that the operations shared by the friendly nations have the effective integration of forces necessary to ensure victory.
The multi-national event is a great way to learn how other nations operate and will give soldiers an opportunity to work with allied nations before going into combat together, said Australian army Pvt. Brimmer.
“It’s a great experience for all involved.”
By Spc. Warren W. Wright, Jr.