3rd Battalion Soldiers serve up weapons training
August 28, 2009
FORT POLK, La. -- The training of combat advisors at Fort Polk is a 60-day program that includes a variety of skills, both kinetic and non-kinetic. The crew of the 3rd Battalion, 353rd Infantry Regiment, 162nd Infantry Brigade is responsible for serving up a portion of weapons training.
The Soldiers of Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 3rd Bn, 353rd Inf Reg are in charge of teaching primary marksmanship instruction of the Foreign Security Forces-Transition Team's training module.
The unit is responsible for training combat advisors on four different crew-served weapons including the M240B machine gun; MK19 grenade launcher; M249 squad automatic weapon; and M2 machine gun.
In addition, the unit teaches a class that instructs employment of the optics of these weapons including PAS13 thermal retical medium and heavy types and XM145 machine gun optic.
Once the Transition Teams have completed the PMI and gunner skills test, they will attend the second phase of gunnery training with the Engagement Skills trainer.
"These combat advisors must be able to employ crew-served weapon systems once they deploy to theater," said Staff Sgt. Mark Vester. "If that need arises, they will save the lives of their fellow Soldiers and the Iraqi or Afghan forces they will advise."
The focus of their job is to train and advise these Transition Teams' doctrine, techniques, and safety in employing these weapon systems.
"Learning safety, which is a portion of PMI, is one of the basic steps in both employing crew-served weapons and preserving the force," said Staff Sgt. Lance Israel, instructor for the M240B machine gun.
These courses will aid the Knowledge Transition Teams in training and improving the Foreign Security Forces' ability to take the fight to the enemy and win. This has contributed to the Army's efforts in Iraq and Afghanistan and exit strategies in any future conflicts.