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Archive for the ‘Forces Focus’ Category

First Team Participates in Project Convergence 2022

Saturday, November 19th, 2022

FORT IRWIN, Calif. — The 1st Cavalry Division recently participated in Project Convergence 2022 from Sep. 29 to Nov. 9 at Fort Irwin. Project Convergence is an Army-led experiment offering opportunities to access future warfighting strategies, including how the all-service and multinational force can work together to detect and defeat threats.

The First Team’s primary mission during the experiment consisted of forming attack positions each morning while moving to a landing departure zone in the M113 Tracked Armored Personnel Carrier, M1A2 SEP v3 Abrams Tank, M2A3 Bradley Fighting Vehicle, and the Joint Light Tactical Vehicle while fighting the opposing forces. Each day new technology was added to the mission to test its success and practicality when used in a lifelike scenario.

Electronic assets allowed the unit to conduct reconnaissance and bring out the enemy without endangering Troopers, preserve combat power of larger platforms, scan the battlefield in a minimal amount of time and allowed the commander to make decisions with less risk.

The assets also provided rapid communications with allied partners across the spectrum of operations, reducing the time needed for decision making and allowing for more rapid target engagement by the 1st Cav artillery.

The 1st Cav is transforming by integrating these new technologies across the formation to enhance their ability to compete globally, deter adversaries and win on all-domain battlefields.

“I firmly believe that everything we do here is something that we’ll see throughout the Army over the next 60 years,” said Lt. Col. Brennan Speakes, 1st Squadron, 7th Cavalry Regiment commanding officer. “This is the equivalent of the Army moving from the horse drawn cavalry to the armored formations we know today.”

Army Futures Command established Project Convergence in 2020 as an opportunity for collaboration, experimentation and a way of informing how we fight, how we organize, the talent we need and what we fight with.

“1-7 Cav is going to be the best trained squadron in the Army by next summer,” said Maj. Gen. John B. Richardson IV, 1st Cavalry Division commanding general. “You are building an incredible reputation right now across the Army.”

Project Convergence is designed to aggressively advance and integrate the Army’s contributions to the joint and multinational force and ensure that the Army, as part of that force, can rapidly and continuously converge effects across all domains including air, land, sea, space and cyberspace, to overmatch our adversaries, increase operational tempo and generate decision advantage over our adversaries.

Convergence — the namesake of the project — refers to integrating efforts across all echelons, from the tactical to the strategic level, to deliver optimal lethal and non-lethal effects across all domains.

“Project Convergence 2022 is good for not only the training value for the squadron, but to learn the use and capabilities of this new technology,” said Sgt. Kyler Tackett, a Bradley gunner with 1st Squadron, 7th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Cavalry Division. “Hopefully PC22 will help with the further development of these vehicles, and to help solve problems for the future of the Army.”

Through Project Convergence, the Army is demonstrating new technologies continuously throughout the year to ensure we can fight and win as one team by framing objectives within the Joint Warfighting Concept and Joint All-Domain Command and Control network.

These experiment demonstrations and future modernization capabilities inform Army emerging technologies, future concepts and future formations.

“Hopefully we leave our mark as a contributor to future technologies that are going to help the Army fight our future wars,” said Cpt. Rannie Lintag, a human resources officer with 1st Squadron, 7th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Cavalry Division.

Looking to Project Convergence 2023 and beyond, the Army will continue to expand its alliances and demonstrate the impact modernization will have in various theaters of our geographic combatant commands.

“I couldn’t be prouder of the team that’s out here,” said Speakes. “This team is making things happen, and I’ve seen a stark improvement in not only their capabilities, but also their leadership potential.”

By SGT Brayton Daniel

6th Special Operations Squadron is Reassigned, Provides New Support

Wednesday, November 2nd, 2022

CANNON AIR FORCE BASE, N.M. —  

The 6th Special Operations Squadron, previously the 27th Special Operations Group Detachment 1, was officially reassigned here, Oct. 6, 2022.

The 6 SOS is an MC-130J Commando II aircraft flying unit that fulfills the 27th Special Operations Wing’s commitment to the Air Force Special Operations Command’s new deployment model.

“We stood up Det. 1 in an effort to get to the AFSOC we need,” said Lt. Col. Michael Roy, 6th Special Operations Squadron commander. “Now we’ve been reassigned, we’re able to work with the Force Generation and stay fully mission capable.”

The squadron’s mission focuses on utilizing the Commando II aircraft for a variety of low-level air refueling missions for special operations aircraft. It also supports infiltration, exfiltration and resupply of special operations forces.

As a newly reassigned and relocated squadron, the 6 SOS is ready to grow and become their own established unit.

“It’s extremely humbling,” said Roy. “Being asked to command a newly relocated squadron has been exciting. We have experienced people who know what they’re doing. They’re excited about the future of forming our own heritage and culture at the 27 SOW.”

The relocation of the squadron makes it the last step in fully completing the FORGEN model. As AFSOC turns to the FORGEN model, it seeks to provide Airmen and their families the deployment and training predictability to ensure readiness, continue to develop our force, and maintain resiliency.

“For the past two decades, our mission has required Airmen to endure frequent, often last-minute, deployments,” said U.S. Air Force Col. Terence Taylor, 27th Special Operations Wing commander. “The Force Generation model provides an opportunity to invest equally in Airmen professional development, be more deliberate with training, and improve individual resiliency.”

By Senior Airman Vernon R. Walter III, 27th Special Operations Wing Public Affairs

Two 3rd SFAB Battalions Case Their Colors at Fort Hood

Saturday, October 1st, 2022

FORT HOOD, Texas – The 1st and 5th battalions of 3rd Security Force Assistance Brigade cased their colors before their upcoming deployment to United States Central Command in front of the brigade’s headquarters here, Sept. 19.

The advisors will deploy to USCENTCOM for six months. The Soldiers will advise, support, liaise and assist nations within their area of responsibility, which includes 21 different countries. The goal is to support and assist allies in the region so they can build capacity and maintain stability.

Security advisor teams increase interoperability and achieve strategic goals by providing experienced leaders from the maneuver, combat engineer, signal support, intelligence, medical and logistics career fields.

“The advisors, of Force Package 23-1 are about as ready as it could possibly be,” said Col. Zachary Miller 3rd SFAB commander. “They’ve trained intensively on individual and collective skills that make them ready to partner in any environment. They built teams where everyone looks out for each other and pushes their fellow advisors to be their best.”

In his remarks to the Soldiers and families gathered for the ceremony, Miller spoke about the 3rd SFAB being a new type of formation in today’s Army and how its mission of enabling combatant commanders to accomplish theater security objectives by training, advising, assisting, accompanying, and enabling allied and partnered security forces. Miller explained that the unit provides an essential capability for the Army and fills a critical need in today’s operational environment.

“Our advisors’ presence matters in Iraq because we are enabling the Iraqi security forces to contain and defeat ISIS without external assistance,” Miller said. “We deter Iran … (which has) for more than 40 years, aggressively supported terrorism or terrorist organizations,” Miller said. “Our advisor’s presence matters, because it helps deter Iran and its proxies from continuing activities that destabilize not only that region, but global security and commerce.”

With advisors already deployed and present in theater, this force-package deployment of SFAB teams to the CENTCOM area is significant because it will be the first time this many advisors will deploy to the region, Lt. Col. Patrick Caukin, 1st Bn., 3rd SFAB commander, said.

“This is our first deployment as a dual battalion headquarter package with the 1st Battalion and 5th Battalion going out as a team to CENTCOM,” Caukin said. “You know, the teams that are over there, 3rd Squadron, they’ve really set the tone, and the groundwork for us to come in and continue the advising efforts to broaden the U.S. is mission there.”

Miller finished his speech with a quote from Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III, who said, “Presence buys you influence, which is built on trust. You can’t surge trust.”

By Eric Franklin, Fort Hood Public Affairs

US Army Activates New Counterintelligence Command

Friday, September 30th, 2022

FORT MEADE, Md. — The U.S. Army recently celebrated the activation of the new Army Counterintelligence Command with a ceremony at the command’s headquarters on July 28, 2022.

The command’s activation, directed by Army senior leadership to ensure Army counterintelligence is aligned with protecting Army and Department of Defense modernization efforts, resulted in the inactivation of the 902nd Military Intelligence Group in a ceremony held earlier that day.

Officiated by Maj. Gen. Michele H. Bredenkamp, commanding general, U.S. Army Intelligence and Security Command, the Army Counterintelligence Command, or ACIC, replaced the 902nd MI Group as an INSCOM major subordinate command.

The ceremonies highlighted an important moment in Army and INSCOM history, honoring the lineage of the 902nd MI Group and the massive undertaking to transform Army Counterintelligence, and celebrating the significance of the new command.

During the assumption of command ceremony, Bredenkamp passed the colors to Brig. Gen. Rhett R. Cox, charging him with the responsibility as the ACIC’s first commanding general.

Cox began his 29-year career at the Virginia Military Institute where he commissioned in the U.S. Army Military Intelligence Corps. Cox led blended teams of service members and civilians at the tactical, operational and strategic levels during assignments to South Korea, 10th Mountain Division, the 513th MI Brigade, the 704th MI Brigade, Fort Huachuca, the Pentagon, the Defense Intelligence Agency and NATO Allied Land Command in Izmir, Turkey.

During his remarks, Cox spoke of the Army special agents who carry the ACIC shield every day.

“To the members of the former 902nd MI Group, your legacy will not be forgotten. We will continue to build this command on the foundation you have built,” Cox said. “Today’s military environment is defined by rapid technological change and intense strategic competition from our adversaries. We must do our part to ensure we are competing, imposing costs and shake our enemy’s belief that they can operate uncontested.”

Since the Army’s decision to initiate counterintelligence reform and stand up the ACIC, the command has established critical partnerships, increased operational capacity, and postured the organization to further protect the Army’s strategic advantage. The ACIC’s core mission is to conduct worldwide counterintelligence activities to detect, identify, neutralize and exploit foreign intelligence, international terrorists, insider threats and other foreign adversaries in order to protect the U.S. Army and DoD strategic advantage.

The ACIC is a trusted Army asset capable of defeating current and emerging threats across all domains, supporting U.S. Army overmatch in any operating environment. The ACIC’s motto is: “Protect the Force, Exploit the Enemy, Vigilant Always, Army Strong!”

Last commanded by Col. Maria C. Borbon, who participated in its inactivation ceremony, the 902nd MI Group, then known as the Counterintelligence Corps, was first activated on Nov. 23, 1944.

On June 30, 1974, the unit was reassigned to the U.S. Army Intelligence Agency and given a new mission of providing counterintelligence coverage to the eastern part of the United States. In 1977, the unit was part of the largest restructuring of Army Intelligence since the end of World War II. Assigned to the newly established U.S. Army Intelligence and Security Command, the 902nd was charged with bringing counterintelligence and communications security functions together in a unified mission, becoming the Army’s principal shield against the threat posed by foreign intelligence services and simultaneously protecting forces in the U.S. before deployments.

The 902nd MI Group responded to the Global War on Terrorism by further providing tactical support to the warfighter. In support of deployed forces, the unit tailored a tactical counterintelligence deployment package that gave both theater commanders and their supporting military intelligence brigades a dedicated counterintelligence capability.

The ACIC will continue the long and distinguished history of dedicated service by the thousands of counterintelligence Soldiers and civilians who have protected our Army for the past 48 years. The command is dispersed across over 73 locations in the United States and overseas and ACIC will continue to adapt and posture itself to contest our nation’s adversaries.

By Deborah J. Varga

Multi-Domain Task Force Activated for Indo-Pacific Duty

Tuesday, September 27th, 2022

Fort Shafter, Hawaii—United States Army Pacific commander, Gen. Charles A. Flynn, constantly reminds people wherever he goes that the Indo-Pacific region is the most consequential theater for the United States this century. The Army was listening, and today activated its third multi-domain task force, the second such formation to be aligned to the Pacific.

On Historic Palm Circle here, the 3rd Multi-Domain Task Force unfurled its colors in front of assembled leaders and Soldiers, and took its place among the other units that make up U.S. Army Pacific, a command region that stretches over half the world’s surface.

“While they may not have a distinguished and storied history yet, this unit is quite special and unique,” said Flynn. “The multi-domain task force is a perfect example of how the Army creates warfighting advantages for the Joint Force.”

Multi-Domain Task Forces are the signature formations for the Army’s transformation, and are theater-specific units that employ long-range precision effects, including cyber, electronic warfare, intelligence, and long-range fires. The concept of the MDTF brings together existing lethal and non-lethal capabilities by integrating and synchronizing them across multi-domains (air, land, water, space, cyber) in order to overcome a specific target.

The first MDTF became operational in 2017 at Joint Base Lewis McChord in Washington State, focusing on the Indo-Pacific. The second MDTF is in Germany aligned with U.S. Army Europe and Africa. This third MDTF will call Fort Shafter home, and becomes the second specialty unit to operate in the Indo-Pacific, or what the Department of Defense has labeled, its “priority theater.”

“Our MDTFs are essential to building joint readiness, strengthens interoperability with our allies and partners, and denying adversaries key terrain,” said Flynn.

The unit’s first commander is Col. David Zinn, an officer with experience in the theater having served in Hawaii and in Korea.

“Our activation in Hawaii reflects the Army’s commitment to this theater as our nation’s priority. We bring increased capacity, and complementary capability to the joint force in the Pacific. Our formation will provide capability to synchronize long-range precision effects, with long-range precision fires, providing increased freedom of action for the Joint Force,” said Zinn.

U.S. Army Pacific has set a goal for the new MDTF to reach full operational capability in fiscal 2023, and are currently evaluating opportunities for the unit to integrate itself with Theater Army exercises such as “Operation Pathways,” and to also work with allies and partners in the region.

Story by Russell K. Shimooka

Photos by PFC Perla Alfaro and PFC Christopher Smith

Space Force – Orbital Warfare Mission

Monday, August 29th, 2022

The mission of Space Delta 9 – Orbital Warfare, headquartered at Schriever Space Force Base, Colorado, is to prepare, present, and project assigned and attached forces for the purpose of conducting protect and defend operations and providing national decision authorities with response options to deter and, when necessary, defeat orbital threats.

Taurus Presents: Shooting International with Brendan Souder

Wednesday, August 24th, 2022

In the web series Shooting International with Brendan Souder presented by Taurus and produced by Panteao Productions, retired Special Forces soldier Brendan Souder travels abroad competing, training and learning about various gun cultures through the lens of embedded operatives, local military and police, competitive shooters as well as the everyday citizens that live in these countries.

Brendan spent his 20-year career in Special Operations between the 75th Ranger Regiment and Special Forces. He is a certified firearms instructor and Grand Master competitive shooter. This series will also showcase elite military units that operate in these territories, showcasing past missions and current challenges of modern-day operations. An example of this in the initial episode.

US, Moroccan Special Forces Team Up For Inaugural Cyber Training

Tuesday, July 19th, 2022

TIFNIT, Morocco – U.S. Army Soldiers with 3rd Special Forces Group (SFG) Tactical Information Support Center, Expeditionary Cyber Team 2, and Royal Moroccan Special Operations Forces (SOF) teamed up to conduct prototype cyber effects training during African Lion 22, June 26, 2022.

African Lion 22, U.S. Africa Command’s largest, premier, joint, annual exercise hosted by Morocco, Ghana, Senegal and Tunisia, June 6 – 30, is a critical opportunity for members of the joint team to build and test their strategic readiness to deploy, fight and win in a complex, multi-domain environment. The cyber training collaboration was the first of its kind and sought to discover how low equity cyber solutions can expand options for key decision makers at the tactical, operational, and strategic levels.

The cyber effects training included hands-on cyber lab demonstrations using commercial tools and comparing them to less accessible high-tech devices. The lead 3rd SFG trainer described the hands-on training as an ‘opportunity to take cyber security to the field and into the mind of each Service Member in a combat situation.’

3rd SFG endeavors to learn, iterate, and eventually offer flexible cyber options at scale while maximizing the indigenous approach through partner forces.

“By actually shifting the focus of training to the modern combat environment, which is now becoming rapidly digital, you create a more potent, lethal force, moving into the future,” stated a member of 3rd SFG.

Building an understanding of multi-domain digital activities would allow U.S. and partner forces to work with more sustainable equipment and better understand digital threats to their missions.

U.S. Africa Command is ready to provide the necessary resources to advance mutual interests and respond to crisis in Africa because of successfully forged and maintained partnerships and demonstrated operational success.

African Lion 22 is a joint all-domain, multi-component, and multinational exercise, employing a full array of mission capabilities with the goal to strengthen interoperability among participants and set the theater for strategic access. More than 7,500 participants from 28 nations and NATO train together with a focus on enhancing readiness for U.S. and partner nation forces.

Story by Charli Turner, U.S. Army Southern European Task Force, Africa

Photo by SFC Katie Theusch, U.S. Army Southern European Task Force, Africa