CAMP HIGASHI-CHITOSE, Japan - U.S. Army snipers collaborated with members of the Japan Ground Self-Defense Force to participate in sniper training and weapons demonstrations in support of Orient Shield 14 here, Oct 30.
The snipers are assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 1st Infantry Regiment, 2nd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division from Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash., and the JGSDF, 11th Infantry Regiment, 7th Division, Northern Army.
Orient Shield is an annual, bilateral exercise with the JGSDF and the U.S. Army. This is the 28th iteration of the Japan-based exercise series. It is designed to enhance U.S. and Japan combat readiness through the exchange of ideas, tactics and military experiences while participating in field training exercises.
"It's really good to work with somebody that's on our level of competition. They are well trained. They are very professional," said Staff Sgt. Perrin Snipes, 2nd Bn., 1st Inf. Reg. "It's been a great experience out here shooting with the Japanese."
Over a three-day period they worked together to understand the fundamentals of their allies' marksmanship techniques and equipment. The snipers shot weapons from various positions and distances and teams provided support as shooters and spotters to their counterparts.
"Our biggest take away is getting to come out here and actually talk to them (the JGSDF) and see their suits, see their rifles and their gear and how it's similar or different from ours, and just sitting around talking with them," said Snipes.
The teams engaged in a friendly sniper competition held annually during Orient Shield 14. The participants had a 30-minute timeframe to zero their weapons and points were calculated based on rounds shot, as well as within specific targets.
The is just one of the training evolutions executed during Orient Shield 14, an exercise that strengthens bilateral relationships and collaboration between U.S. forces and JGSDF for future combined operations and to support interests of friends and allies in the region.