UDARI RANGE, Kuwait - Soldiers with 2nd Platoon, B Company, 2nd Battalion, 7th Cavalry Regiment, out of Fort Hood, Texas, partnered with Kuwaiti forces from 55th Battalion, 26th Brigade, Oct. 5 on Udari Range near Camp Buehring to participate in an air assault that culminated in the troops clearing a mock village.
This partnership exercise's purpose was to familiarize Soldiers with U.S and coalition forces of each others' clearing procedures, while providing an opportunity to increase unit readiness.
The four-day exercise consisted of helicopter mount and dismount training, village clearing and detainee procedures, said Sgt. 1st Class Thomas Barnett, the platoon sergeant for 2nd Platoon, B Co., 2-7 Cav. Rgt., a part of 3rd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division.
"I honestly think that our training, this partnership handshake training, actually will help them save lives in future missions on the battlefield," said Barnett.
Fire teams could be seen clearing buildings while others provided security, bounding from building to building and neutralizing hostiles as necessary.
The partnered forces could be called upon to protect Kuwait and secure American interests if war breaks out nearby, said 1st Lt. Isaiah Hickman, platoon leader for 2nd Platoon. The joint training reinforces the interoperability between partners.
The Kuwaiti and American forces did more than just train together, though.
"We actually worked five, six, seven, eight hours together and then we would sit together and have a meal, drink tea and enjoy each other's company," said Hickman. "It really made us friends rather than just people who had to be together because the Army told us to be."