NATO's Exercise Allied Spirit IV is now underway in Bavaria,Germany at the Hohenfels Training Area.The snowy landscape provides a challenging setting for the more than 2400 troops from Canada,Italy,Germany,Latvia,Slovenia,the UK and the US who are participating in the high intensity drills.Combat scenarios being enacted include conventional forces engagement;guerilla warfare;and defending against a chemical weapons attack.They are intended to train brigade and battalion level commands for real world battlefields.*
Leading the major exercise is Italy's Garibaldi Brigade,being the brigade headquarters for Allied Spirit.The Michigan Army National Guard is lead advisor in the higher command echelon.Other US troops participating are the US Army's 2nd Cavalry Regiment and 173rd Airborne Brigade.Besides the Michigan National Guard,Army National Guard troops from Louisiana,Ohio,Washington,DC and California are honing their skills at Hohenfels as well.*
It is our hope to not only learn from our allies,but also demonstrate the US overall support of the NATO mission,said Michigan Army National Guard Colonel Clark C. Barret,Commander,NATO Rapid Deployment Corps-Hohenfels (NRDC-H).The NATO allies show they can work together to resolve potential threats,safeguarding the freedom and security of its members through political and military means,which is a fundamental principal of the most successful military alliance in history,COL Barret added.*
Hohenfels confronts the soldiers with extreme cold and snow,varied terrain and obstacles,testing their ability to respond to simulated threats and challenging all levels of command with decision making and overall operational planning,US Army Europe said.