18 Jan 23. NY ANG and Brazil hold planning conference for Southern Vanguard 24. The bilateral event is scheduled to be conducted in the autumn of 2023. Master Sgt. Rob Mitchell and a Brazilian army infantry officer discuss training scenarios. Credit: Maj. Tifani Summers/New York National Guard.
The New York Army National Guard (NY ANG) and the Brazilian military have held an initial planning conference for exercise Southern Vanguard 24.
The conference was held in Brazil to lay the groundwork for the bilateral event. The joint exercise will be conducted in the autumn of this year.
Southern Vanguard is sponsored by the US Southern Command and is conducted by the US Army South.
It aims to improve readiness between New York and Brazilian forces to operate in a joint environment.
New York National Guard state planner, US Army major Melanie Padilla said: “Exercise Southern Vanguard is an enduring exercise to advance the Brazil-US strategic partnership and increase US-Brazil human, procedural, and technical interoperability.
“All while enabling regional crisis response capability and capacity.”
During the conference, the participants worked on the exercise’s objectives, training settings, and logistical needs.
According to Padilla, NY guardsmen will mainly focus on offering medical support, US and Brazil staff integration, fires planning, integration, and more.
Approximately 80 NY guardsmen will take part in the event. Personnel will be deployed from the Army National Guard Medical Command, the 138th Public Affairs Detachment, the 1st Battalion, the 466th Medical Company-Area Support, 258th Field Artillery, the 133rd Composite Support Company, and the 53rd Digital Liaison Detachment.
North Military Command G3 Brazilian army major Rafael Penteado said: “It’s essential to plan together and discuss the issues between the two armies.
“We can face each other and determine what works for both armies. For me, it’s a very great opportunity to get a shared experience with a friendly country and develop my view of the US Army and its processes”.
18 Jan 23. Egypt’s AOI confirms agreement to produce South Korean jet trainers. Egypt’s state-owned Arab Organization for Industrialization (AOI) has confirmed it has signed an agreement with Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI) to locally manufacture advanced training aircraft.
In a statement released on 16 January, the AOI said its chairman, Mokhtar Abdel-Latif, had met a South Korean delegation that included members of parliament and senior officials from KAI and Hanwha Aerospace. They discussed the implementation of the AOI’s agreement with KAI to “localise the manufacturing technology for an advanced training aircraft to meet the needs of the armed forces and export it to African and Arab countries”, it said.
The aircraft will be built at the AOI Aircraft Factory in Helwan, which previously licence-produced Chinese K-8E trainers for the Egyptian Air Force. It was reported that Egypt was producing more than 94% of the aircraft when the 120th and final K-8E was delivered in May 2010.
17 Jan 23. UK, Norway and Denmark conduct training exercise Flotex.
The exercise involved participation of RN’s Astute-class submarine Artful and Duke-class frigate Northumberland. Naval forces from the UK, Norway and Denmark have conducted a joint annual maritime exercise to assess and enhance the capabilities of future submarine commanders.
The fortnight-long exercise, called Flotex, aims to prepare the forces to undertake missions to protect Nato’s northern flank.
It involves participation of the UK Royal Navy’s (RN) Astute-class nuclear-powered submarine HMS Artful and Duke-class or Type 23 frigate HMS Northumberland.
The two vessels have joined the Royal Norwegian Navy (Sjøforsvaret) forces as well as naval vessels, F-35 stealth fighter jets and long-range maritime patrol aircraft from the Royal Danish Navy.
According to the RN, HMS Artful has been hosting several training drills for the future submarine commanding officers to prepare them for conducting live-action phase of the ‘Submarine Command Course or Perisher’.
Perisher course lead instructor commander McAllister said: “Flotex provided a warfare scenario that was complex enough to meet my training aims in an area of ever-changing conditions which confused picture compilation, with fjords which made for demanding dived navigation, all of which combined to challenge my students to their limit.”
The latest iteration of Flotex allowed the trainees to perform various submarine hunting drills, led by HMS Northumberland frigate.
Conducted in the near-sub-zero waters of the Norwegian Sea and Arctic Sea, the training activities allowed the trainee commanders to operate in challenging scenarios.
The operations were also supported by the Merlin helicopters that allowed the personnel to locate hostile submarines.
RN HMS Northumberland commanding officer commander Will Edwards-Bannon said: “The challenging conditions – both above and below the waves – have been the perfect environment for my crew to hone their skills and assure our ability to defend Nato’s Northern Flank.” (Source: naval-technology.com)
16 Jan 23. Bahrain, US begin annual naval exercise Neon Defender.
The exercise will focus on maritime operations, tactical combat, installation defense, expeditionary operations, and more.
Military personnel from Bahrain and the US have commenced a ten-day annual naval exercise, called Neon Defender, in and off the coast of Bahrain.
Neon Defender is a bilateral training exercise to boost collaboration and interoperability among the Bahrain Defence Force, Ministry of Interior and US Naval Forces Central Command (NAVCENT), which is based at Manama, Bahrain.
NAVCENT and US 5th Fleet commander vice admiral Brad Cooper said: “We are very excited to begin the new year training side by side with the Kingdom of Bahrain, a longstanding, strategic partner.
Cooper also leads two US-led international naval coalitions hosted in Bahrain – the Combined Maritime Forces and the International Maritime Security Construct.
Cooper added: “Each year, our mutual commitment to regional maritime security and stability strengthens and expands, and this year is no different.
“This is a great start to meaningful bilateral cooperation we will demonstrate together in 2023.”
Besides focusing on maritime operations, tactical combat, installation defense, expeditionary operations, the military personnel will also undergo training in medical response and search and rescue operations.
About 200 personnel from the US Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard are taking part besides coastal patrol ships USS Monsoon (PC 4) and USS Chinook (PC 9).
Lead exercise planner lieutenant commander Antoni Wyszynski said: “We appreciate the opportunity to sharpen our skills alongside our Bahraini partners.
“This event brings us together and enables us to learn from each another.”
NAVCENT consists of maritime forces stationed in Bahrain and operating in Gulf of Oman, Red Sea, the Arabian Gulf, parts of the Indian Ocean and three important choke points – at the Strait of Hormuz, Suez Canal and Bab al-Mandeb.
The International Maritime Security Construct (IMSC) finished a three-day maritime exercise, Sentinel Shield, on 9 January 2023 in the Arabian Gulf. (Source: naval-technology.com)
17 Jan 23. Belarus and Russia commence joint air combat exercise.
The drills are being conducted to increase interoperability between the Russian and Belarussian forces.
Air forces of Russia and Belarus have commenced a series of bilateral air combat exercises near the Ukrainian border, Reuters reported.
The exercise began on 16 January and is expected to continue until 1 February.
The drills are being conducted to increase interoperability between the forces of the two countries while enhancing their joint performance and capabilities to undertake combat missions.
Citing a post shared by the Belarusian Ministry of Defence on Telegram, the report claimed that the drills undertaken during this bilateral activity will be ‘defensive’ in nature.
Belarusian Security Council first deputy state secretary Pavel Muraveyko said: “The exercise is purely defensive in nature. It will be a set of measures to prepare our and Russian aviation to carry out the relevant combat missions.”
Muraveyko revealed that the exercises will primarily involve aerial reconnaissance training, drills to deter air strikes, as well as training on providing air cover for crucial military equipment and communications.
According to a report by Russian News Agency TASS, the Belarusian MoD said that the latest exercises will further bolster the operational compatibility of Russian and Belarusian air forces to jointly undertake a wide range of tactical missions.
The Belarusian MoD statement added: “The drills are set to practise a broad range of objectives, in particular, conducting air reconnaissance, carrying out joint aerial patrols along the state border, providing air support for combat teams, landing a tactical assault force, delivering cargo and evacuating casualties.”
The Belarusian MoD has also informed that this exercise is being held from ‘all the airfields and training ranges’ of the Belarusian Army’s air and air defence forces.
Last year, Belarus participated in the Russian military’s multinational strategic command following exercise Vostok 2022.
16 Jan 23. US Airforce and Navy complete maritime strike exercise Jackpot Hooligan II.
The integrated activity involved participation of experts and assets from the USAF, North Dakota Air National Guard and Navy.
The US Navy in collaboration with the US Air Force (USAF) concluded the first joint maritime strike exercise, called Jackpot Hooligan II.
The exercise aimed to demonstrate the capabilities of the US Navy’s Carrier Strike Group (CSG)-10 to integrate with an MQ-9 uncrewed aerial vehicle (UAV) to close the structure of attack and remove a target or ‘kill chain’ in an anti-surface operations.
Held in December 2022, the integrated activity involved participation of experts and assets from the USAF, North Dakota Air National Guard (NDANG) and Navy.
The units carried out a wide range of exercises to exchange tactics, techniques and procedures along with at-sea and ashore implementation.
The exercise was undertaken by sailors and airmen from Carrier Air Wing (CVW)-7, Destroyer Squadron (DESRON)-26, 178th Attack Squadron, NDANG, Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA)-103 and Command Strike Fighter Wing Atlantic (CSFWL).
During early 2022, the participating personnel from CVW-7, NDANG, VFA-103 and CSFWL established their first detachment at Naval Air Station (NAS) Oceana, Virginia.
Simultaneously, the CVW-7 was undertaking pre-deployment training to prepare for routine operations under George H W Bush CSG from August 2022.
This allowed NAS Oceana detachment to demonstrate abilities of MQ-9 to support CVW-7 in several maritime domain mission areas. In the next steps, the team focused on developing innovative tactics to conduct final at-sea trials.
The efforts were further improved during a Composite Training Unit Exercise in 2022, when the MQ-9 liaison officer (LNO) integrated UAV with a CSG at-sea for the first time.
NDANG MQ-9 LNO 1st lieutenant Mitchell Mazaheri said: “One major takeaway from MQ-1/9 community’s mission during Global War on Terror was significance of face-to-face integration with soldiers, marines and sailors on the ground prior to their deployments.” (Source: naval-technology.com)