Soldiers from Company C “Comanche,” 2nd Battalion, 7th Cavalry Regiment, 3rd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, participated in a joint forcible entry exercise alongside Soldiers from the 82nd Airborne Division, Feb. 11, here.
The exercise was designed to support the Global Response Force (GRF), a joint services task force tasked to rapidly deploy at a moment’s notice.
“We are an armored and mechanized package designed to support the Global Response Force if it’s determined they need that type of support,” said Capt. Robert Greene, the Comanche company commander. “We are the heavy firepower and the heavy mobility.”
Everything kicked off when about 800 paratroopers jumped into the Fort Hood training area over Drop Zone Antelope, landed, formed a perimeter and set up their tactical operations center.
Next, the paratroopers secured a nearby landing strip to allow their support to arrive by aircraft. Playing the role of support unit, Company C brought its combat vehicles with it.
Greene’s M1A2 Abrams tanks and M2A3 Bradley Fighting Vehicles were carried to the landing strip on a fleet of Heavy Expanded Mobility Tactical Trucks, which simulated vehicles being flown into the battlefield.
“We simulated an air landing after the 82nd jumped in and secured the airfield,” Greene said. “We attacked and seized two towns for their specialist chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear and high yield explosives forces to seize a weapons of mass destruction site.”
Comanche Company hit the ground running and provided additional security and firepower. The paratrooper’s mission was to travel miles of open land, cross a river and pass through multiple mock cities to get to a suspected WMD site.
The Soldiers used their tanks and fighting vehicles to create a safe passage, something they have been training for since being assigned to the GRF June 2015.
Just recently, the organizations completed a month long rotation to the Joint Readiness Training Center where they executed similar missions together.
“Coming here to Fort Hood is different,” said Command Sgt. Maj. Beau Barnett, command sergeant major of the 1st Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division. “It allows us to practice setting up our training objectives. So now we are at Fort Hood training with them, so different commanders can get to work with those Soldiers and learn how to be prepared in case we have to go to war.”
With the partnership between the airborne and cavalry units growing each time they are able to train together, Green said he feels confident the GRF will be ready for anything.
“The more we train with the 82nd, the more prepared we are to fight with the 82nd,” said Greene, “which is what the country needs us to do. More repetitions help us develop shared systems and fully understand each others capabilities and limitations.”