Idaho National Guard’s 116th Trains in Romania
Nearly 1,000 soldiers from the 116th Calvary Brigade Combat Team comprised of units from Idaho, Oregon and Montana are currently training at the Romanian Land Force Combat Training Center in Cincu, Romania.
The 116th Soldiers have joined over 2,500 other Soldiers from 10 different nations to participate in Saber Guardian 2016, an annual multinational training exercise designed to enhance interoperability with allied and partner nations.
Army Sgt. Sarah E. Howell of McCall, Idaho and a supply specialist with the 116th Brigade Headquarters said she is excited to work with people from different cultural backgrounds and is looking forward to learning from them.
“Developing a working relationship with another nation is very important,” she said. “It provides an opportunity to build on each other’s strengths and weaknesses and learn how different militaries perform similar tasks.”
The multinational participation includes Soldiers from Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bulgaria, Canada, Georgia, Poland, Romania, Ukraine, Republic of Moldova and the United States.
Saber Guardian 16 is designed to support security efforts for the region by training Soldiers in both simulated and live environments. Field training, computer assisted training, and a combined arms live fire exercise as well as a command post exercise are all on the schedule for the next week.
The field training portion of Saber Guardian 16 will involve a major bridge crossing exercise, allowing Soldiers an opportunity to employ a floating bridge system to facilitate the movement of personnel and equipment across a river.
The combined arms live fire demonstration will consist of armor and infantry companies, fixed wing, rotary wing, and artillery all coordinating their efforts into a full spectrum of operations.
“It’s critical that our troops--the Soldiers of the 116th CBCT--get this experience in interoperability with our foreign partners,” said Maj. Eric Orcutt of Boise, Idaho and exercise operations officer for 116th Cavalry Brigade Combat Team. “It’s this kind of training, to this degree that enables us to hit the ground running when it matters most.”
The exercise officially kicked off with an opening ceremony on July 27. Each participating nation’s national anthem was played across a parade field displaying each country’s national flag. Saber Guardian 16 is scheduled to end on August 7.