CAMP NIMMAN KOLAYUT, Thailand - Soldiers with the U.S. 5th Battalion, 20th Infantry Regiment, and the Royal Thai Army are conducting counter-IED training from Jan. 29 to Feb. 6, 2019, at Nimman Kolayut, Thailand, during Exercise Hanuman Guardian.
The training includes identifying, assessing and marking IEDs in a jungle environment. The culminating event is a combined U.S. and Thai dismounted platoon lane that requires the Soldiers to react to IEDs.
"Our Thai counter-IED instructors get deployed down to southern Thailand on a rotational basis," said Michael Thomas, an instructor with Asia Pacific C-IED Fusion Center in Fort Shafter, Hawaii. "They are showing our U.S. Soldiers all the tactics, techniques and procedures the insurgents are using and the type of IEDs.
"IEDs are a reality in an asymmetric war environment," Thomas added. "Hanuman Guardian gives our U.S. Soldiers the opportunity to understand the IED tactics, techniques and procedures the insurgents are using in southern Thailand."
The Soldiers are shown a static display of IEDs from the local region, Thomas said. They rotate among three different practical exercises: an IED identification lane from zero to 200 meters, identifying objects while walking through a jungle trail and the culminating event with an integrated the Thai and U.S. platoon conducting a dismounted movement.
This year U.S. Soldiers with the 303rd Ordnance Battalion (EOD) from Schofield barracks, Hawaii, were on the scene to share their tactics, techniques, procedures and lessons learned from Afghanistan and Iraq, said Thomas. This will help the Royal Thai Army soldiers understand the current and past IED threats the U.S. Army has had to encounter.
"We want Soldiers to take away the basic principles of how to react properly when they encounter an IED in an environment such as southern Thailand," said Thomas. "They will leave knowing how to operate in this type of battlespace, which makes our Soldiers better able to protect themselves and accomplish their mission."