15 Jan 21. British Army trains 500th Somali soldier in infantry skills. Troops from Princess of Wales’s Royal Regiment shared key military skills with Somali National Army soldiers to help them conduct effective security operations.
The British Army has trained its 500th Somali soldier in the essential infantry skills they need to combat armed groups and ensure security and stability in the country. The latest batch of 113 troops marked the end of their training with a ceremony in Baidoa, Somalia on 31 December.
The eight-week Company Collective Training course is designed to prepare officers and soldiers from the Somali National Army (SNA) to conduct security operations in the country’s South West State, countering the threat from Al-Shabaab and other jihadist and criminal organisations. The 26-man British training team from 2nd Battalion, Princess of Wales’s Royal Regiment taught students skills including marksmanship, patrolling, medical aid and counter improvised explosive device (IED) techniques.
On completion of the course, soldiers were provided with uniforms and equipment which, when combined with their training, will allow them to operate much more effectively. The contingent are the fifth Somali company trained by Britain since the course was rolled out in the country in September 2019. The UK has also provided the SNA with military vehicles to support security operations and a new barracks in Baidoa that can accommodate 450 troops.
Minister for the Armed Forces James Heappey said, “This milestone shows Britain’s ongoing commitment to help Somalia provide security and stability for its people, while combating terrorist groups that threaten the UK’s interests at home and abroad. The United Kingdom and our Armed Forces will continue to support Somalia, with plans to double the number of troops trained under this scheme in 2021.”
Ben Fender OBE, British Ambassador to Somalia, said, “The UK remains fully committed to training the Somali National Army in Baidoa. In September, we ran a course for headquarters staff in how to plan and run operations, and this week are graduating another infantry company (of 113 soldiers). We expect to train a new company around every eight weeks next year, and to complete our training of 8 Brigade by the end of 2021”.
The graduation ceremony was attended by Brigadier General Mohammed Sheik Irow, Commander of SNA 60 Sector, and Lt Col Andy Wareing. Following a parade and speeches, the two officers inspected the graduating soldiers and presented individual awards.”
Lt Col Andy Wareing, SNA Training and Advisory Team (STAT) Commander, said, “I congratulate the soldiers from 60 Sector stood here today. They displayed impressive professionalism and commitment during eight weeks of tough training and are well prepared for the challenges that lay ahead. I would also like to thank their Somali and British instructors, whose relentless pursuit of excellence set a fine example to the soldiers. We look forward to the next Company Collective Training course which starts in January 2021.”
The milestone graduation of the 500th soldier from the course underlines the UK’s commitment to Somalia’s longer-term security, with plans to train five more companies comprising around 600 troops in 2021.
Over 1,750 officers and soldiers have attended various military courses at the British-funded training centre in Baidoa.
It follows an announcement in September 2020 that the British Army had trained the first Brigade Headquarters for a generation in Somalia. A total of 19 SNA officers attended the course – adapted to ensure it could take place in accordance with COVID force health protection measures – which covered planning and delivery of stabilisation operations and prepared the officers to work alongside international partners to deliver security for the Somali people.
Lt Ibrahim Madkus Abdurahman of SNA 60 Sector, said, “The Brigade Staff Course gave me the tools to plan operations, and the Company Collective Training course gives our soldiers the skills to conduct those operations.”
The UK Minister for Africa, James Duddridge MP, recently underlined Britain’s continued commitment to Somalia with a new support package worth £21.8 million. The package included £1.6m to counter the threat from roadside bombs, and a further £3.37m for the Somali Security Forces engaged in joint operations with the African Union Mission to Somalia (AMISOM). (Source: https://www.gov.uk/)
14 Jan 21. SIG SAUER Academy Presents Shooter’s Edge: An Online. Fundamental Handgun Training Series. SIG SAUER Academy presents Shooter’s Edge…Learning to Shoot at SIG SAUER Academy a new video series that gives viewers an inside look at the foundational handgun classes offered at the world renown SIG SAUER Academy. The ten-episode series takes viewers into the classroom and onto the range as the instructors walk through the fundamentals of handgun safety, shooting techniques, practice and training exercises, along with instruction in equipment options and handgun selection. The series was shot on location during several of the Academy’s introductory classes.
“With over 8 million new gun owners in 2020, we have seen an extraordinary demand for the foundational handgun courses at SIG SAUER Academy,” said Tom Taylor, Chief Marketing Officer and Executive Vice President, Commercial Sales, SIG SAUER, Inc. “The Shooter’s Edge series is a unique opportunity for these new gun owners, those wanting to take a beginner handgun class, or the experienced shooter looking to review basic training techniques straight from SIG SAUER Academy featuring our world-renowned instructors.”
The Shooter’s Edge series premieres today across all SIG SAUER Academy social media channels (YouTube, Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter) and includes the following episodes: Learn to Shoot at SIG SAUER Academy, Basic Rules of Safety, Types of Handguns and Ammunition, Foundational Shooting Techniques, How to Practice and Train Effectively, Choosing the Right Gun, Equipment and It’s Purpose, Holsters, Presentation, and Recovery, Magazines, Loading and Unloading, and What Happens After Learning to Shoot at SIG SAUER Academy. The entire series is available on YouTube, and each week a new episode will be featured for the duration of the series.
Shooter’s Edge is presented by SIG SAUER Academy, a 140-acre firearms training facility catering to everyone from beginners to experts, located in Epping, New Hampshire. To learn more about SIG SAUER Academy or review the in-depth course outline, visit sigsaueracademy.com.
13 Jan 21. US and allies begin exercise Sea Dragon 2021 in Guam. The US and several partner nations have kicked off the multinational Sea Dragon 2021 exercise in Guam. The US and several partner nations have kicked off the multinational Sea Dragon 2021 exercise in Guam.
The annual exercise is a multi-lateral anti-submarine warfare drill aimed at improving interoperability among the participating forces to adequately respond to regional contingencies.
This year, members of the Royal Australian Air Force, Canadian Air Force, Indian Navy, and Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force are participating in the exercise.
The Sea Dragon 2021 will focus on anti-submarine warfare (ASW) training and excellence to include 125 hours of in-flight training.
The scope of the programme will include tracking simulated targets as well as the final problem of finding USS Chicago, a US Navy Los Angeles class nuclear submarine.
Two P-8 Poseidon aircraft from Patrol Squadron 5 (VP-5), the ‘Mad Foxes’, also flew to Andersen Air Force Base in Guam to participate in the exercise.
Officer in Charge (OIC) Patrol Squadron 5 lieutenant commander Kyle Hooker said: “As OIC, I am eager for the opportunity to further develop our partnerships with Japan, India, Canada, and Australia while at Sea Dragon 2021.
“The Covid environment will be challenging for all our participants, but I know we will come together to adapt and overcome while executing our goal of Anti-Submarine Warfare interoperability.”
The US 7th Fleet is the US Navy’s largest forward-deployed fleet and operates around 50-70 ships and submarines, as well as 140 aircraft with approximately 20,000 sailors.
The fleet’s operational area includes more than 124 million square kilometres. (Source: naval-technology.com)
13 Jan 21. Raytheon UK part of team transforming the Royal Navy’s technology, training and learning solutions. Team awarded contract to modernise and transform the Royal Navy’s training over 12 years. Raytheon UK, a unit of Raytheon Technologies (NYSE: RTX), alongside strategic partner Capita, received a contract award to provide the Royal Navy with transformative technology, training and learning solutions over the next 12 years.
The contract, which will be led by Capita, has an initial contract value of £200m to Raytheon UK and will ensure the Royal Navy offers best-in-class training to all its service personnel. It will accelerate the use of new technology, processes and learning solutions, aligning with the Royal Navy’s transformation agenda and positioning it to thrive in the 21st century.
“This announcement allows the team to begin efforts to transform the Royal Navy’s training and learning solutions, and to modernise and transform the way training is delivered across the Armed Forces,” said Jeff Lewis, chief executive of Raytheon UK. “Our extensive experience in leading large and complex transformative change programmes around the world will provide the Royal Navy with tailored, digitally enabled training, fit for the future.”
Raytheon UK will play a key role in modernising and transforming the Royal Navy’s training analysis, design, delivery, assurance, and management/support services, helping to make the UK Armed Forces more agile and adaptable than ever to tackle future challenges.
“We are committed to investing in the UK and helping to keep the country secure and our Armed Forces equipped with the best affordable sovereign solutions, creating highly skilled jobs across the UK,” Lewis said. “We look forward to delivering these solutions to the Royal Navy over the coming years.”
Rear Adm. Phil Hally MBE, the Royal Navy’s director of people and training, said, “The award of this 12-year contract marks a major milestone for Navy transformation. It will see the modernisation of the RN training system at scale to deliver the operational capabilities of the future, unlock more opportunities for our people, and get better trained people to the frontline, quicker.”
13 Jan 21. GaardTech awarded British Army contract. The Australian-owned defence firm has been tapped to supply the British Army with live-fire training systems.
GaardTech has secured a contract with the British Army for supply of 32 3D Robotic Enemy Vehicles.
The training systems, set to be built in GaardTech’s Brisbane facility, are expected to be used in live-fire training exercises against large doctrinally correct enemy formations.
According to GaardTech’s founding director, Steen Bigaard, the training systems would represent an enemy battle group conducting both day and night operations cross country and in formation.
“Tanks, APC and anti-aircraft platforms will be provided and every layer of the UK joint force will get a high degree of training value,” Bigaard said.
The British Army is expected to use the targets to test the capability of its Apache Longbow, Challenger 2 MBT, AJAX IFV, 155mm Artillery, and other RAF assets and ISTAR Drones.
“There has never been a live fire training scenario of this scale, primarily because the technology and training mechanism were not developed or invented,” Bigaard added.
“This has been the mission of GaardTech Pty Ltd since I founded it in 2017; to recreate as many aspects of combat as possible to train forces under realistic combat live-fire conditions.” (Source: Defence Connect)
11 Jan 21. New York Division of Criminal Justice Services Approves SIG SAUER Academy Semi-Automatic Pistol Instructor Courses. SIG SAUER Academy, the leading provider of the highest quality firearms instruction and tactical training in the world, is pleased to announce the New York Division of Criminal Justice Services (DCJS) has approved the SIG SAUER Academy Semi-Automatic Pistol Instructor Course for their Armed Guard Instructors. The New York DCJS is a statewide multi-function support agency.
“SIG SAUER Academy provides the finest firearms and tactics training available worldwide, and we are proud to have our curriculum recognized by the New York DCJS. Our team of world class instructors have a broad range of backgrounds with the unique ability to deliver the best training experience to support the agencies programming,” began Tom Taylor, Chief Marketing Officer and Executive Vice President, Commercial Sales.
SIG SAUER Academy Semi-Automatic Pistol Instructor Course offers effective teaching methods in the practical application and use of a pistol. The course covers the teaching of marksmanship fundamentals, coaching techniques, practical application drills, and developing courses of fire. The curriculum provides a solid foundation for a civilian based pistol training program.
“SIG SAUER is honored to have this opportunity to partner with the New York Division of Criminal Justice Services and support their mission to enhance public safety by providing resources and services,” concluded Taylor. To learn more about SIG SAUER Academy and review the in-depth course outlines visit sigsaueracademy.com.
11 Jan 21. Rafael unveils Magic Fly to support indoor fighting. Rafael has unveiled a series of autonomous systems with automatic target-recognition capabilities to find targets inside buildings, reducing the exposure of frontline soldiers. Company sources said the new systems are designed to provide ground forces with detailed intelligence on threats in enclosed spaces where communications are unreliable, vision is limited, and navigation is challenging.
The systems include the Magic Fly-Raven unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), the Magic Fly-Nano UAV, and a ‘robotic dog’ unmanned ground vehicle (UGV), all fitted with day/night electro-optic and proximity sensors.
The systems are linked to a ground control system (GCS) that can be operated by a single soldier and is capable of controlling multiple platforms, providing user-defined “artificial intelligence-based mission planning” for tasks such as exploratory mapping of indoor environments and finding particularly people or objects.
The software automatically scans the feeds from the sensors carried by the unmanned vehicles to identify and classify targets. It uses the available digital military networks to send the data to forces waiting outside, which can include aircraft flying overhead, with enemy personnel and weapons highlighted in different colours.
Shmulik Olanski, vice-president of Rafael’s Land Multi-Domain Operations Directorate, told Janes that an officer in the field can then decide whether to order a strike or send in soldiers. “We don’t always want a jet or a tank to solve the problem. Sometimes we need a surgical approach and that means sending the soldiers in,” he said. “Sometimes we just want to rule out that there is an enemy presence.” (Source: Jane’s)
06 Jan 21. CAE Awarded Subcontract from LM to Build C-130J Simulators for Binational French/German C-130J Squadron. CAE has been awarded a subcontract from Lockheed Martin to support the design, development and manufacture of a suite of C-130J training devices for the binational French and German C-130J training facility to be located at Evreux-Fauville Air Base in Normandy, France.
Under terms of the subcontract, CAE will manufacture a C-130J full-mission simulator capable of reconfiguring between the C-130J-30 airlifter and KC-130J tanker aircraft. CAE will also provide a C-130J fuselage trainer to be used for training loadmasters. The training devices will be delivered in 2023, ahead of the planned opening of the new training facility where French and German aircrews and maintainers will begin training in 2024.
As the prime contractor, Lockheed Martin has overall responsibility for delivery of the training devices, the learning management system, courseware and options for five years of training services.
“This award continues the longstanding relationship between Lockheed Martin and CAE on the design and development of training systems for all variants of the C-130J Super Hercules,” said Dan Gelston, Group President, Defence & Security, CAE. “CAE is honored to support Lockheed Martin in welcoming both France and Germany to the long list of global operators who train their aircrew on CAE-built C-130J simulators and training devices.”
The French and German binational C-130J squadron consists of a combined 10 Super Hercules aircraft, including C-130J-30 airlifters and KC-130J tankers. France and Germany operate the fleet under a unique partnership where the countries share the aircraft, which are used for aerial refueling, air drop and cargo missions.
Lockheed Martin and CAE have designed and developed a range of C-130J training systems for global militaries, including all branches of the United States Air Force, the U.S. Marine Corps, Royal Air Force, Italian Air Force, Indian Air Force, Royal Australian Air Force, Kuwait Air Force and Royal Canadian Air Force. In addition, CAE built the C-130J/LM-100J full-mission simulator used at Lockheed Martin’s own Hercules Training Center (HTC) located in Marietta, Georgia. (Source: ASD Network)
About InVeris Training Solutions
InVeris Training Solutions combines an agile approach with an unmatched expertise in training technology to design and deliver customized, cutting-edge, first-rate training solutions that keep military, law enforcement, private and commercial range clients safe, prepared and ready to serve – Because Seconds Matter™. With a portfolio of technology-enabled training solutions, and a team of more than 400 employees driven to innovate, InVeris Training Solutions is the global leader in integrated live-fire and virtual weapons training solutions. With its legacy companies, FATS® and Caswell, InVeris Training Solutions has fielded over 15,000 live-fire ranges and 5,100 virtual systems globally during its 90-year history. The Company is headquartered in Suwanee, Georgia and partners with clients in the US and around the world from facilities on five continents.