RHINE ORDNANCE BARRACKS, Germany -- At the Intermediate Staging Base, or ISB, located, here, Soldiers from the 173rd Airborne Brigade are preparing for their airborne Joint Forcible Entry (JFE) into Poland in support of exercise Swift Response 16.
There is much to be done during the initial phase of the exercise, here, the Army's Contingency Response Force refines their mission plans, inspects equipment and conducts other hands-on training.
"Rhine Ordnance Barracks has the facilities for Army units to come here to stage, plan and team up with the Air Force to accomplish any mission," said Col. Gregory K. Anderson, the commander of the 173rd Airborne Brigade. "Rhine Ordnance Barracks is definitely a power projection platform for us and its good to exercise it."
One particular area of concentration has been parachute training. More than 1,000 paratroopers have been familiarizing themselves with actions they must take during the upcoming airborne jump.
These Sky Soldiers have been working closely with Air Force using their C-130 Hercules cargo planes.
"Throughout this exercise we are employing the total force. Since everyone arrived, it has been a seamless transition getting everyone on the same page," said Air Force Capt. Walter Palumbo, mission planning cell chief. "Mission success is our primary objective regardless of the component they are coming from."
Key personnel also held a Rehearsal of Concepts (ROC) drill where they ironed out all the details of the JFE. During the ROC drill a very detailed terrain model was used by each participating section to brief their role to the joint forces.
"Putting a joint force together is almost an operation in itself, it's incredibly complex. A lot of people think the mission doesn't start until after the paratroopers are exiting the aircraft. But there is a lot of planning that went into the little piece you see here today," said Anderson.
After the JFE into Poland, the Sky Soldiers along with Italian paratroopers from the Folgore Parachute Brigade will move into exercise Anakonda 16.
"We will never pass up an opportunity to train, to marshal, and to outload and deploy a force," Anderson said.
Swift Response 16 includes more than 5,000 Soldiers and Airmen from Belgium, France, Germany, Great Britain, Italy, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Spain and the United States and takes place in Poland and Germany, May 27-June 26, 2016.