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1st Special Forces Group (Airborne) SOF Integration

Green Berets of the 1st Special Forces Group (Airborne) train with Soldiers from 2nd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division during Exercise Bayonet Focus 2017 at Yakima training center, WA, June 19, 2017. ( U.S Army photo by Sgt. Brandon Welsh.)

Green Berets have a vast amount of knowledge and experience on and off the battlefield. Because of their mission set they are able to think outside the box and operate in a way that most conventional units cannot. Special Forces, have a broader mission set other than just direct action that include unconventional warfare, special reconnaissance, counter-terrorism, humanitarian assistance, and peacekeeping. They have been through years of rigorous training to be experts in these missions. One could imagine the impact they can have while working side by side with a conventional Army unit. Private 1st Class Brennan Stubb, an infantryman assigned to C Company, 3rd Infantry Regiment, 2nd Battalion, 1st Stryker Brigade Combat Team, said working with Special Forces “make us more prepared, and it changes things up from conventional Army training to get a different perspective.” The 2nd Infantry Divison soldiers received advanced medical training in first aid and self-aid and were shown better techniques to put the injured on litters and the use of a sked (a stretcher that can be drug on the ground) that will help them in future training and deployed environments. It is important for Special Forces to train their conventional counterparts in the unconventional techniques that they go by so they can better understand each other on the battlefield, according to Stubb.

Members of the 1st Special Forces Group (A) cunducted a Key Leader Engagement during training exercise Bayonet focus 2017 at Yakima training center, WA, June 17, 2017. The KLE was conducted to enhance training with 1 SFG(A) and 7th infantry divsion. ( U.S Army photo Sgt. Codie Mendenhall.)

The conventional units show their support to Special Forces by providing them with support from the ground and air. During this training exercise Green Berets were supported by soldiers in Strykers from 2-2 SBCT as they drove around in their all-terrain vehicles conducting their operations throughout YTC. Having the ability to go out to YTC and conduct operations together has a huge advantage for both units. While speaking with Scott a team leader with 1st SFG (A) said, “It’s a good training venue for both organizations and because we both use it, it makes sense that we co-utilize the same area.” According to Scott YTC has all the good qualities of going to either Joint Readiness Training Center in Louisiana or National Training Center in California without the long travel that also resembles the type of environment that they might encounter overseas makes the training that they do that much more effective. Both units can accomplish the training they need all while saving time and money as they can convoy out to YTC in their Strykers or be bused out. Working side by side with the soldiers from 2-2 gives them experience that can carry over during a deployment either to the Pacific Region or Southeast Asia. “They have a better idea of how we are organized and what our mission is and specifically in a deployed environment there’s so many lessons learned, command relationships, who’s responsible for what, how to battle track each other and how to communicate very basic things that can have a big impact down range,” said Scott.

Story by Sgt. Brandon Welsh
1st Special Forces Group (Airborne)

13 Responses to “1st Special Forces Group (Airborne) SOF Integration”

  1. Stefan S. says:

    Fond memories of 1SFG!

  2. AbnMedOps says:

    Fond memories of Yaki-dust!

  3. Geoff says:

    Cunducted? Come on Army. You can make fun of the marines with spelling like that!

  4. rob371 says:

    It’s great to do joint FTX’s for units to understand capabilities and how to work in a joint environment. With that being said all I can think about is how in the KLE picture the dude from 7ID can’t look at ODA Joe because his sleeves are rolled in a field environment.

    • AbnMedOps says:

      Yeah, but look at which dude is wearing soft cap, and which is wearing helmet!

      • Seamus says:

        The guy with the soft cap is an Observer Controller (OC) we had them everywhere out there as it was prep for our NTC rotation. The patch he is wearing is 7th ID, our DIV HQ, they oversaw much of the OCs and some of the attachments to the operation (i.e. ODA) or at least that is how I understand it. Good training all in all. Happy to be back from Yaki-stan in time for Independence Day.

    • straps says:

      ..and the cargo pocket of his Patagonia coolguy pants appears to be unbuttoned. Other side is prolly the same way.

      The GPF guys will be ruined–absolutely ruined by seeing that.

    • Jon, OPT says:

      That SF uniform is not affected or regulated by 670-1, it’s non-standard.

      That GPF gut though, does fall directly under 600-9.

      Just saying, don’t mind me, just a retired MSG dropping reality JDAMs…

      My opinion on content, more of this needs to happen, good to see these guys working together.

  5. Internet Heads Exploding says:

    Serpa holster?


  6. RainbowWarrior says:

    The battle field has changed and conventional units will find them self under SOF command in the future. Good training.

    • Seamus says:

      We were NOT under SOF command. ODA worked WITH us, NOT over us. Our command element was 2nd BDE 2ID. The ODA was attached for the purpose of the operation. SOF does not, will not, nor do they desire to command conventional units, let alone a full Brigade Combat Team. You don’t know what you are talking about. Commanding Conventional Units has absolutely ZERO to do with SOF mission sets.

  7. corsair says:

    When was 7ID re-activated?

    • Seamus says:

      It is our Divisional Command HQ. Weird I know. Basically 7th ID is the DIV HQ for two IN BDEs, 1st and 2nd BDE of the 2nd Infantry Division. Wikipedia has the patch chart breakdown for JBLM if you are interested. Weird I know, not at all like most other posts I have been to.