JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD, Wash. - Soldiers with the 7th Infantry Division, I Corps and the 6th Battalion of the Kumaon Regiment, Indian Army, joined together to kick off exercise Yudh Abhyas 15, Sept. 9. The annual exercise is in its 11th year and is a bilateral, theater security cooperation exercise between the U.S. Army Pacific and India.
This will be the first time the Yudh Abhyas, Hindu for "Training for War," will be held at JBLM.
The training allows both armies the opportunity to train together, improving tactics, techniques and procedures and to share military experiences with each other.
"With our allies and partners we are able to prevent, mitigate and respond to crisis in order to assure security," said Brig. Gen. Robert Ulses, deputy commanding general of support, 7th Infantry Division. "This bilateral exercise reinforces our commitment to the Indo-Asia-Pacific region and improves the interoperability between our two Armies. It builds upon our enduring partnership and cultivates trust."
Lt. Gen. Stephen R. Lanza, commanding general, I Corps, spoke of the importance of the training and how grateful he was for the opportunity to host the event.
"Having the Indian army come to the United States is actually indicative not to the rebalance but more about our partnership in the Pacific, about regional security, building capacity and about theater security cooperation," said Lanza. "Training with the Indian Army here is an added benefit where our two forces will come together. We will learn from each other in this process. We will be better trained and more ready and the Yudh Abhyas name of this exercise is exactly the direction we should be going in."
Indian Army Brig. Gen. Guljeet Singh Jamwal will serve as the overall mission commander for the Yudh Abhyas exercise which runs over the next several weeks. During the exercise, the U.S. and Indian Armies will conduct a staff exercise, train with the 3rd Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division, 7th Infantry Division and have the opportunity to visit some cultural sites in Washington.
"I'm sure this exercise for all of us will be an excellent opportunity to learn from each other," Jamwal said. "The complete Indian contingent is looking forward to this interaction to benefit from vast and ready experience of the U.S. Army and take away some of [its] best practices."