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New Annual Rifle Qualification To Make Marines More Lethal

Tuesday, March 2nd, 2021

The Marine Corps began the train-the-trainer course of the new Annual Rifle Qualification, which will fully replace the previous Table 1 and Table 2 qualification course of fire Oct. 1, 2021.

The ARQ was designed to give a more realistic and “train like you fight” environment by emphasizing lethality and positional shooting. Improvements to the Marine Corps rifle training and qualification program have been under development since 2016.

The ARQ will further develop combat scenario shooting skills resulting in a more proficient fighting force. The service-wide entry-level rifle training will remain unaffected for recruits at both Marine Corps Recruit Depots and for officers at The Basic School in order to develop strong fundamentals, confidence and weapon comfortability.

“Dating back to the early 1900’s with only minor changes from its original form, the current annual rifle training qualification has been unchanged,” said CWO4 Anthony L. Viggiani, Marine Gunner, Training and Education Command. “This has been the same qualification that every Marine shoots throughout their entire career, until now. The ARQ enhances proficiency, confidence, and lethality in a dynamic environment using multiple targets, limited exposure targets, moving targets and shooting on the move.”

Marine Corps-wide implementation will take place no later than the beginning of fiscal year 2022, with active-duty forces transitioning by October 1, and Marine Forces Reserve transition in FY22. During the second and third quarters of fiscal year 2021, Weapons Training Battalion at Marine Corps Base Quantico, Virginia, will provide training and assistance on the conduct of ARQ to formal marksmanship training units in order to facilitate the transition to service-wide ARQ implementation.

The ARQ includes a three-day course of fire. Day one includes a “holds day,” with the drill portion conducted first. Days two and three are pre-qualification and qualification, respectively, where the destroy portion is conducted first with engagements starting far to near in order to foster an offensive combat mindset.

The more operational training requires Marines to conduct the course of fire in helmet and body armor but allows the opportunity to use bipods, rest the weapon on their magazine, or rest their weapon on their assault pack as long as time constraints are met. Scoring is measured by lethal effects with destroying targets in the allotted time.

“This enables the individual Marine the opportunity to engage their weapon system from multiple firing positions and find the most efficient way to utilize alternate shooting positions throughout the course of fire,” said Viggiani. “Our operating environment has changed over the years, so we had to make changes to our qualifications on marksmanship.”

Other significant updates include the incorporation of a singular target throughout the course of fire, with exception of a moving target at the 100-yard line, with a requirement to score by hitting “lethality zones” and the introduction of support barricades at the 100 and 200 yards, allowing Marines to shoot from the standing, kneeling, or supported position with stationary and moving targets. This transition from a competition style course of fire to assessing lethal effects on a target is a significant change for the ARQ.

Similar to the Physical Fitness and Combat Fitness Tests, Marines must achieve a minimum standard in each portion of the course of fire to qualify in the overall assessment.

The implementation of the ARQ directly impacts the mission statement, “We must adapt our training in a manner consistent with the threat and anticipated operational challenges,” as stated in the Commandant’s Planning Guidance.

Story by Petty Officer 2nd Class Rachael A Treon, MCB Quantico Communication Directorate

US Marines Receive Improved Optic to Identify Threats from Longer Distances

Monday, March 1st, 2021

MARINE CORPS BASE QUANTICO, Va.—Marines recently received an innovative new optic that better prepares them to engage adversaries from longer distances.

In January, Marine Corps Systems Command’s Program Manager for Infantry Weapons began fielding the Squad Common Optic—a magnified day optic comprising an illuminated and nonilluminated aim-point designed to improve target acquisition and probability-of-hit with infantry assault rifles.

The SCO can be attached to the M4 and M4A1 Carbine as well as the M27 Infantry Automatic Rifle. It will supplement the attrition and replacement of the Rifle Combat Optic and the Squad Day Optic for each of those weapons for close-combat Marines.

“The Squad Common Optic provides an improved day optic to infantry and infantry-like communities, including reconnaissance units” said Tom Dever, project officer for Combat Optics at MCSC. “It’s a system that improves situational awareness and decreases engagement times, greatly benefiting Marines.”

SCO an improvement over RCO

The SCO enables Marines to identify targets from farther distances than the existing RCO system.

Roger Boughton, MCSC’s lead engineer for the SCO program, said the RCO has a fixed magnification, whereas the SCO provides a variable power. This means Marines can use the SCO to identify targets at both close and far distances, providing twice the visual range of the RCO.

“Having an optic that can reach out to longer distances will ultimately make the Marine a more lethal first-shot shooter,” said Boughton. “This means they can use less rounds to overwhelm an enemy.”

Maj. Kyle Padilla, MCSC’s optics team lead and an infantry officer, said the SCO is agnostic to the round and weapon system, which provides additional flexibility for Marines. This allows for movement to a different host weapon and accommodates the employment of the M855, M855A1 or future ammunition.

“It’s all about making an accurate decision,” said Padilla. “The SCO gives squad leaders or individual riflemen more time to make a decision to eliminate that threat if necessary.”

The system is also easy to assemble. The SCO includes a mount that prevents Marines from needing to carry tools to remove or exchange the optic, lightening the load for Marines.

“If you want to mount it onto the rail of the weapon, you don’t need a wrench to tighten anything,” said Boughton. “You just need your hands.”

‘A step in the right direction’

The SCO program moved rapidly from program designation to fielding in just 16 months. After awarding a contract, PM IW conducted various user assessments, including a simulated 10,000-round fire exercise, during production verification testing to confirm performance and resolve issues.

During these evaluations, Marines raved about the benefits of the SCO and its improvement over the existing system.

“Being able to shoot farther, identify targets at greater ranges and be more accurate will make them more lethal,” said CWO4 David Tomlinson, MCSC’s infantry weapons officer. “Marines have expressed excitement over this capability.”

CWO4 Gerald Eggers, the infantry weapons officer at The Basic School, participated in the system’s fielding in January, aboard Marine Corps Base Quantico, Virginia. He commended the scope’s variable power magnification as well as its ability to be employed with different ammunition and weapons.

“Marines with M27s will greatly benefit with this scope,” said Eggers. “I certainly believe the SCO fielding is a step in the right direction.”

Dever said the fielding of the SCO puts an improved capability into Marines’ hands more quickly and enables them to carry out their missions more efficiently and effectively.

“The rapid acquisition and fielding of improved capabilities is vital to equipping the Marine Corps to operate inside actively contested maritime spaces in support of fleet operations,” said Dever.

The program office anticipates the weapon reaching Full Operational Capability in fiscal year 2022.

Story by Matt Gonzales, Marine Corps Systems Command

Study Identifies Potential Link Between Soldiers Exposed to Blasts, Alzheimer’s

Sunday, February 28th, 2021

RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C. — Research shows that Soldiers exposed to shockwaves from military explosives are at a higher risk for developing Alzheimer’s disease — even those that don’t have traumatic brain injuries from those blasts. A new Army-funded study identifies how those blasts affect the brain.

Researchers at the University of North Carolina at Pembroke in collaboration with the U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command, now known as DEVCOM, the Army Research Laboratory, and the National Institutes of Health found that the mystery behind blast-induced neurological complications when traumatic damage is undetected may be rooted in distinct alterations to the tiny connections between neurons in the hippocampus, the part of the brain particularly involved in memory encoding and social behavior.

The research published in Brain Pathology, the medical journal of the International Society of Neuropathology, was funded by the lab’s Army Research Office.

“Blasts can lead to debilitating neurological and psychological damage but the underlying injury mechanisms are not well understood,” said Dr. Frederick Gregory, program manager, ARO. “Understanding the molecular pathophysiology of blast-induced brain injury and potential impacts on long-term brain health is extremely important to understand in order to protect the lifelong health and well-being of our service members.”

The research team tested slices of rat hippocampus by exposing the healthy tissue to controlled military blast waves. In the experimental brain explants (tissue slices maintained alive in culture dishes), the rapid blast waves produced by the detonated military explosives led to selective reductions in components of brain connections needed for memory, and the distinct electrical activity from those neuronal connections was sharply diminished.

The research showed that the blast-induced effects were evident among healthy neurons with subtle synaptic pathology, which may be an early indicator of Alzheimer’s-type pathogenesis occurring independent of overt brain damage.

“This finding may explain those many blast-exposed individuals returning from war zones with no detectable brain injury, but who still suffer from persistent neurological symptoms, including depression, headaches, irritability and memory problems,” said Dr. Ben Bahr, the William C. Friday distinguished professor of Molecular Biology and Biochemistry at UNC-Pembroke.

The researchers believe that the increased risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease is likely rooted in the disruption of neuronal communication instigated by blast exposures.

“Early detection of this measurable deterioration could improve diagnoses and treatment of recurring neuropsychiatric impediments, and reduce the risk of developing dementia and Alzheimer’s disease later in life,” Bahr said.

UNC-Pembroke is a minority-serving institution.

By U.S. Army DEVCOM Army Research Laboratory Public Affairs

SCUBAPRO Sunday – Carlson’s Raiders

Sunday, February 28th, 2021

It’s not hard to say that anyone who wanted to be in military Special Forces when they were a kid has watched the movie Gung Ho! So, in honor of Evans F Carlson’s Birthday on the 26th. He was one of the best leaders in military history and helped build today’s Special Forces foundation. He spends over two years in China with the guerrilla, learning unique tactics that he would bring to the U.S. to help fight the Japanese in WW2. We need more leads like this in the world.  

Evans F Carlson enlisted in the U.S. Army at the age of 16 and began his military career in 1912. He served in the Philippines, Hawaii, and Mexico, and less than a year after leaving active duty, he reenlisted in time for the Mexican punitive expedition. During his military service, he was wounded in action in France and was awarded a Purple Heart. He was promoted to Captain in May of 1917 and was made a lieutenant in December of 1917. After the war, he entered the Marine Corps as a private and gained the rank of second lieutenant the following year.

Meanwhile, in Nicaragua, he was awarded the first of three Navy Crosses. In 1940, he became an observer in China during the years leading up to World War II and was impressed with the guerrilla warfare being waged against Japanese troops. While he was in Japan, he became convinced that Japan would attack the United States.

He advised General Douglas MacArthur of an impending invasion in the Philippines and the need for guerrilla units in case the Japanese army attacked. However, MacArthur ignored his recommendation.

Carlson returned to the United States and joined the United States Army again. Carlson and Merritt Edson advocated the use of guerrilla warfare as part of the Allied Pacific War effort. After Edson was assigned the 1st Raider Battalion, Carlson received command of the 2nd Raider Battalion.

Approximately 7,000 applied for enlistment in the 2nd Raider Battalion, but many people that applied were rejected. He asked each candidate about the political significance of the war. He later said he favored men with initiative, adaptability and held democratic views. James Roosevelt, the son of Franklin D. Roosevelt, became Carlson’s assistant.

The Raiders learned the tactics employed by the Red Army against the Japanese. This practice involved learning how to kill people silently and quickly. To more effectively imitate the guerrillas of China, Carlson eliminated the privileges of officers. The same level of nutrition, wearing the same clothing, and carrying the same equipment were all factors.

Carlson’s field research into the Red Army convinced him that trust in the men in battle improved their performance and the belief in a better pollical system. So, he would provide information on how undemocratic governments are under Nazi Germany and Japan. Also, he encouraged the men to discuss their vision of a functioning society after the war.

In August of 1943, Carlson and 222 marines left Pearl Harbor and landed on Makin Atoll. After two days of battle, Carlson’s men destroyed the radio station, burned the radio station’s equipment, and captured documents. Thirty marines were among the first to die during the Battle of Tarawa. As a result of this raid, the Japanese fortified the Gilbert Islands.

On 4 November 1943, the Raiders landed on Guadalcanal. During the next 30 days, Carlson’s man killed over 500 enemy soldiers and only lost 17. Carlson had been wounded and was forced to return to the United States for medical treatment.

Carlson’s superiors expressed concern about his unorthodox tactics and ideas. They were also concerned about his relatively close relationship with Agnes Smedley. This radical journalist was involved in campaigning for USA support of communist forces in China to help them defeat the Japanese Army in Asia.

In May of 1943, Carlson was promoted to be the Raider Regiment’s executive officer and was stripped of the direct command of his battalion during the Guadalcanal campaign. Carlson was also upset with his superiors by becoming involved in a controversial project of publishing pamphlets on the contribution of the Afro-Americans in the war. Carlson eventually returned to action in November 1943 at the battle of Tarawa. On Saipan, he received severe wounds when trying to rescue a radio operator who the Japanese had shot.

Carlson eventually returned to action at Tarawa in November 1943. During the Battle of Saipan, he was injured while rescuing a radio operator who the Japanese had shot. Being injured caused him to have to retire from the United States Marines after the war.

warfarehistorynetwork.com/2015/07/27/evans-carlson-forms-carlsons-raiders

Here is the movie:

Directed Energy Combined Test Force Oversees Testing of Anti-Drone Weapon

Sunday, February 28th, 2021

KIRTLAND AIR FORCE BASE, N.M. (AFNS) —

Throughout 2020, the 704th Test Group’s Operating Location-AA, part of the Directed Energy Combined Test Force, or DE CTF, focused much of its effort on the testing of weapons designed to prevent adversarial drone observation and assault.

The latest system tested, the High Energy Laser Weapon System 2, also known as HELWS2 or H2, is a counter-Unmanned Aerial System (c-UAS) directed energy weapon (DEW).

H2 was tested as part of a directed energy experiment that began in the spring of 2020 and was managed by the Strategic Development Planning & Experimentation, or SDPE, office. This experiment has involved taking commercial off-the-shelf systems and deploying them to several combatant commands, or COCOMs, for training, testing and evaluation for a one-year period.

“This experiment has many notable U.S. Air Force firsts, including the complete training of and operation of the system by Security Forces Airmen, the first directed energy c-UAS capability, and the first integration with a base,” said Lt. Col. Jared Rupp, DE CTF director. “Additionally, these locations were selected as to significantly enhance c-UAS capability through the use of these DEWs, helping to prevent enemy airborne intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR), and attacks.”

Raytheon Intelligence & Space developed the H2 with lessons learned from the deployment of its first HELWS, referred to as H1 and deployed in early 2020. The H2 system features a number of improvements including ruggedized enhancements to ensure transportability and survivability in a wide range of operational environments, a new beam director for more accurate targeting, and a robust power system for additional magazine depth.

The DE CTF is a combination of Air Force Research Laboratory DE Directorate (AFRL/RD), 704th Test Group Operation Location-AA and Air Force Operational Test & Evaluation Center (AFOTEC) personnel co-located at Kirtland Air Force Base. The 704th Test Group is an operating unit of Arnold Engineering Development Complex, headquartered at Arnold Air Force Base, Tennessee.

The DE CTF is uniquely postured to accelerate fledgling systems to the warfighters through its three members by leveraging decades of directed energy lab experience and resources; developmental test planning, execution and reporting; and operational insight and relevancy.

Since it was formed in 2018, the DE CTF has been engaged in multiple experiments and will lead the directed energy c-UAS prototype testing and other program of record efforts in the near future.

The first phase of H2 testing, which took place at the end of July 2020, was a limited weeklong test to ensure basic functionality and lethality and to determine whether the system was ready to enter the second phase of testing.

This second phase involved deployment to a COCOM base and included H2 setup, operator training and an initial performance assessment. The system and team, consisting of members from AFRL/RD, 704th Test Group, AFOTEC, SDPE and Raytheon, were overseas for this phase at the beginning of September 2020.

“The first phase proved that H2 was capable of integrating with a fielded radar and fielded command and control system, and it completed the kill chain by shooting down UASs at operationally-relevant ranges,” Rupp said. “It was then successfully deployed and integrated overseas.”

Because the HELWS systems represent a new class of weapons, there was not yet official training, concept of operations or tactics, techniques or procedures for the H2. Rupp said those involved in its testing developed guidance for utilization of the weapon.

“This experiment has gained knowledge to build a basis of integrating DEWs through U.S. Air Force operations,” Rupp said. “The DE CTF and SDPE created the training for the first-ever Security Forces operators to operate this highly-technical DEW. We educated base leadership of the capabilities and limitations of these weapons to enable them to make proper decisions, such as engagement authorities. We also assessed the performance of the system after overseas transport and setup and monitored the daily operation of the system to determine what factors impact operations the most and what parts of the system were most vulnerable to reliability problems.”

More work involving the H2 is upcoming for the DE CTF. Another assessment of the system will be conducted around six to 12 months after the initial assessment.

“At the end of the one-year evaluation period, the COCOMs decide whether they will take ownership of the sustainability of the system or whether they want us to take the system back,” Rupp said.

The experimentation campaign initiated this past spring is ongoing. Five DEWs were to be tested throughout the effort – three versions of the HELWS and two different high-power microwave systems. Four systems were tested in 2020, three of which have been deployed.

By Bradley Hicks, Arnold Engineering Development Complex Public Affairs

Army Partners with Air Force’s THOR for Base Defense

Saturday, February 27th, 2021

KIRTLAND AIR FORCE BASE, N.M. (AFNS) —

In an effort to counter the increasing threat posed by enemy drones and other airborne threats, the U.S. Army is making an investment in directed energy prototype technology, with the Tactical High Power Operational Responder, or THOR, system, developed at the Air Force Research Laboratory’s Directed Energy Directorate at Kirtland Air Force Base, playing a key role.

THOR is a prototype directed energy weapon used to disable the electronics in drones, and specifically engineered to counter multiple targets – such as a drone swarm – with rapid results. The technology is housed in a 20-foot-long shipping container that can be stowed in a military cargo plane and assembled by just two people.

Army Lt. Gen. L. Neil Thurgood, the director for Hypersonics, Directed Energy Space and Rapid Acquisition, who oversees the Army Rapid Capabilities and Critical Technologies Office, paid a visit to Kirtland AFB Feb. 11 to watch THOR in action and to meet with its developers.

“The Army’s directed energy capabilities will need to provide a layered defense with multiple ways to defeat incoming threats,” Thurgood said. “High energy lasers kill one target at a time, and high powered microwaves can kill groups or swarms, which is why we are pursuing a combination of both technologies for our Indirect Fire Protection Capability rapid prototyping effort. Our partnership with the Air Force Research Laboratory gave the Army a running start on the high power microwave mission, and we look forward to continuing to advance these capabilities to protect our warfighters.”

Drones represent an emerging threat to U.S. military bases, personnel and infrastructure. Prior to THOR’s deployment overseas, the prototype is undergoing a series of risk reduction and system characterization efforts at Kirtland AFB, as well as hands-on Soldier touchpoints that solicit input from operational users.

“THOR, and other DE systems, provide non-kinetic defeat of multiple targets at once,” Thurgood said, after watching a system demonstration that took place in a remote canyon of the 52,000-acre base. “Keeping our Soldiers safe is our number one priority, and we need to employ effective defensive weapons systems to stay ahead of the changing threats presented by our adversaries.”

The AFRL THOR program took on the challenge to design, build and test an effective counter-UAS system that could engage many targets at once, and at long distances. High power microwaves are one solution to this challenge.

“The system output is powerful radio wave bursts, which offer a greater engagement range than bullets or nets, and its effects are silent and instantaneous,” said Amber Anderson, THOR program manager.

During and after THOR deployment, the RCCTO will continue to partner with the Air Force on the THOR program in support of the U.S. Army’s effort to provide a prototype Indirect Fire Protection Capability-High Power Microwave system to a platoon by fiscal year 2024.

Additionally, the Army will deliver a prototype IFPC-High Energy Laser capability in FY24 that uses a 300 kilowatt-class laser for fixed site defense.

Courtesy Air Force Research Laboratory

FirstSpear Friday Focus: OEM Spotlight Boydd Products

Friday, February 26th, 2021

It’s Friday and we’re kicking off the first FirstSpear OEM Partner Series of 2021. We’ll take a look at an OEM company that FS has partnered with and the equipment they produce. Today we are checking out American equipment company, Boydd Products.


How did Boydd Products get its start?
Boydd Products, Inc. was founded in 2015 by retired Police Sergeant James Boydd to provide law enforcement agencies direct distributor access to quality protective equipment at an affordable price. Boydd Products is a proud distributor for AVON Protection’s line of APR’s (Air Purifying Respirators) and Ceradyne brand ballistic helmets. Boydd Products is also a distributor for 3M Peltor and Paulson Manufacturing. In addition to distribution, Boydd Products has designed and developed its own line of products to include the patented rifle rated Compact Response Shields, Pat-Down Props training kits, and NIJ compliant rifle rated armor plates.

What new products do you have for 2021?
In 2021, Boydd Products has designed and will be releasing three new products to include: the new, patent-pending armored flip panel extension accessory for the rifle rated ballistic Compact Response Shield (CRS21), an innovative new patented straight baton for riot control and patrol use, and the Advanced Riot Shield (ARS) designed specifically for mounted units (motors, bicycle, and equestrian teams), allowing the shield to be stored on the user’s upper back, yet quickly deployable.


There are options for private label manufacturing all around the world, how did you find us and why did you ultimately choose FirstSpear OEM manufacturing?
We were already familiar with FirstSpear as we attend many of the same trade shows and conferences. Our experiences with the FirstSpear trade show staff have always been friendly, helpful and positive. Additionally, many of our existing customers utilize FirstSpear products and highly recommended them. For our OEM project we reached out to three different manufacturers to evaluate quality, durability, production capabilities and affordability. In mid-2020, Boydd Products made a trip to FirstSpear in Fenton, Missouri, and took a tour of the facility to see their operation firsthand. Besides producing a superior product, what impressed us the most was FirstSpear’s genuine interest in our product and their commitment to meet the detailed manufacturing needs of the OEM customer. This attention to detail resulted in minimal revisions during prototyping. The prototypes were high quality and produced in a short period of time. The choice was easy.

Why was Made in the USA important to the brand?
First of all, we know that when a product is made in the USA it creates jobs at U.S. factories. These jobs help support communities and provide more opportunities for the American worker. We are proud to contribute to that process. Also, having direct oversight here in the U.S. is a plus when it comes to managing quality control. When it comes to textiles and tactical gear, no one does it better than here in the U.S.


What sets your product apart from others on the market?
There are many great ballistic shield designs available from a variety of top notch manufacturers. Each are designed with a specific purpose. The rifle rated Boydd Compact Response Shield differs in that it is generally more compact (hence its name), lighter weight (7.5 lb. and 10 lb. panels) and modular in design. This fast moving, center mass ballistic shield can be carried and utilized by first responders and warfighters of varying sizes and strengths with less fatigue. When not in use, the shield can be slung and secured high on the user’s back. It can also be transported and quickly deployed from a vehicle, aircraft, watercraft or other confined area. The 6/12 FirstSpear Molle webbing and Velcro allows for attachments such as shield lights, medical kits, ammunition pouches, and weapon support brackets. An additional armored flip panel accessory can be attached to increase the area of coverage if desired (CRS21). The Boydd Compact Response Shield is available in 21” and 26” sizes and can be ordered in a variety of colors (Ranger Green, Black, Coyote, multicam & other custom patterns).

Why did you choose FS technology?
The CRS shield cover is built using FirstSpear’s 6/12 Modular Platform Technology. This technology has already been proven in the field and has been utilized by tactical teams all over the world for years. In addition, this platform provides our customers a newer and lighter weight version of our previous shield cover without sacrificing strength and durability.

For more information, check out www.boyddshield.com.

For more information about FirstSpear and OEMs, contact [email protected].

Soldiers Use Biometrics to Vet Drivers Sustaining Syrian Logistics Ops

Thursday, February 25th, 2021

ERBIL AIR BASE, IRAQ – Military intelligence Soldiers assigned to the Syrian Logistics Cell at Erbil leverage biometric technology to screen drivers for a long haul to outposts in the area of operations.

“Biometrics screenings are important because they not only keep the drivers safe as they enter Syria, but they also help protect military convoys as they complete the Syrian haul line,” said Chief Warrant Officer David Lente, the officer in charge of the SLC’s military intelligence team, or S2. “It’s a way to filter out any drivers who have nefarious goals.”

The Syrian Logistic Cell operates out of Erbil Air Base in the northern section of Iraq, where the Soldiers equip and sustain the warfighters in the AO.

The principle biometrics tool includes scans of the iris and fingerprints and taking the driver’s photo, said Lente. If there is a hit on the driver’s record, then the Soldier performs additional follow-up.

“This is utilized when a deeper dive in the driver’s history of activity is required. It is a more thorough scrub of the driver for any criminal activity,” he said. It has more in-depth information on the drivers and allows the military or civilians checking a driver into a secure installation to view any previous notes left on their file.

Drivers are vetted often and their photos and personal information must be updated regularly. “The biggest task we are working through now is updating all the records of the drivers for 2021 since there are hundreds of drivers who could potentially be used each cycle,” said Lente.

According to Spc. Nicholas Filak, an SLC intelligence specialist, the biometrics program is supplemented with driver interviews used to collect atmospherics concerning the area of operation. “Road conditions, possible hazards, traffic delays, enemy threats, any kind of disruptions along the route could cause the GLOC [ground lines of communication] to be halted or delayed,” Filak said.

Chief Warrant Officer Mark Tegtmeyer, the officer in charge of the SLC Mobility Team, said the drivers are part of a rigorous logistics planning cycle allowing continuity among all key personnel, including the truck drivers.

The SLC team also works closely with other strategic partners on EAB to further gather information, Lente said. This ensures that cross communication is occurring with all agencies involved.

By CPT Elizabeth Rogers