CHINCHILLA, Spain (Feb. 28, 2016) -- U.S. Army Europe's 173rd Airborne Brigade is training alongside paratroopers from the Spanish Armed Forces Airborne Brigade (BRIPAC), Feb. 24 to March 10, 2016, here.
This bilateral exercise highlights the integration of the 1st Battalion, 503rd Infantry Regiment (Airborne), with the Spanish BRIPAC. During this exercise, Paratroopers of each country will integrate to conduct combined company and battalion-level airborne operations, Situational Training Exercises to include squad live fire training.
Sky Soldier 16 is preparing the brigade's 1-503rd Infantry Regiment (Airborne), for future contingency operations, to increase unit lethality, improve tactical airborne proficiency, and build a foundation for future allied training with the Spanish army.
During the initial phase of the exercise, Spanish army soldiers will execute an early entry operation followed by a battalion level airfield seizure onto La Felipa drop zone. Each nation will conduct follow-on operations.
At the final phase, paratroopers will conduct a long range marksmanship validation range and both nation forces will collectively execute allied familiarization training and a mortar fire. During this time, night drivers training will be conducted as well as additional marksmanship ranges to validate all gunners within the battalion.
At the conclusion of the exercise, a wing exchange ceremony between paratroopers of both nations will take place to symbolize the successful completion of a foreign airborne operation.
The 173rd Airborne Brigade is the U.S. Army's Contingency Response Force in Europe, providing rapidly-deploying forces to the U.S. Army Europe, Africa and Central Command areas of responsibility within 18 hours. The brigade routinely trains alongside NATO allies and partners to build stronger relationships and strengthen the alliance.