U.S. Army Pacific Soldiers with Black Watch Company, 2nd Battalion, 1st Infantry Regiment, 2nd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division, based out of Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington, conduct security operations on the island of Anguar in the Republic of Palau September 8. Defender Pacific 2020 brought over 125 Soldiers and a Logistics Support Vessel carrying two High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems.
1 / 4 Show Caption + Hide Caption – U.S. Army Pacific Soldiers with Black Watch Company, 2nd Battalion, 1st Infantry Regiment, 2nd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division, based out of Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington, conduct security operations on the island of Anguar in the Republic of Palau September 8. Defender Pacific 2020 brought over 125 Soldiers and a Logistics Support Vessel carrying two High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems. (Photo Credit: Staff Sgt. Solomon Navarro) VIEW ORIGINAL
The USAV Lt. General William B. Bunker, a U.S. Army logistics support vehicle (LSV) out of Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii, off the island of Anguar, in the Republic of Palau September 8. U.S. Army Pacific Soldiers from Washington and Hawaii took part in a training exercise on the island of Anguar as part of Defender Pacific 2020.
2 / 4 Show Caption + Hide Caption – The USAV Lt. General William B. Bunker, a U.S. Army logistics support vehicle (LSV) out of Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii, off the island of Anguar, in the Republic of Palau September 8. U.S. Army Pacific Soldiers from Washington and Hawaii took part in a training exercise on the island of Anguar as part of Defender Pacific 2020. (Photo Credit: U.S. Army) VIEW ORIGINAL
Maj. Gamble See, liaison team officer in charge for the Republic of Palau and John Hennessey-Niland, U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of Palau, and U.S. Army Pacific Soldiers with 2nd Battalion, 1st Infantry Regiment, based out of Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington, discuss coordinating efforts during an exercise on the island of Anguar, Palau, September 8. Task Force Oceania is a newly formed 9th MSC Task Force consisting of Soldiers from all components of the U.S. Army – active-duty, Army Reserve and National Guard. Their mission is to provide continuous presence in Palau and other Pacific island countries across Oceania, assist the U.S. embassy, and reinforce lasting and meaningful relationships in the region.
3 / 4 Show Caption + Hide Caption – Maj. Gamble See, liaison team officer in charge for the Republic of Palau and John Hennessey-Niland, U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of Palau, and U.S. Army Pacific Soldiers with 2nd Battalion, 1st Infantry Regiment, based out of Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington, discuss coordinating efforts during an exercise on the island of Anguar, Palau, September 8. Task Force Oceania is a newly formed 9th MSC Task Force consisting of Soldiers from all components of the U.S. Army – active-duty, Army Reserve and National Guard. Their mission is to provide continuous presence in Palau and other Pacific island countries across Oceania, assist the U.S. embassy, and reinforce lasting and meaningful relationships in the region. (Photo Credit: Staff Sgt. Solomon Navarro) VIEW ORIGINAL
Maj. Gamble See, Laison Team Officer in Charge for the Republic of Palau and Capt. Jason Muise, Commander of the 102nd Forward Resuscitative Surgical Team based out of Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington, Assist in surveying efforts during an exercise on the island of Anguar, Palau, September 8. Task Force Oceania is a newly formed 9th MSC Task Force consisting of Soldiers from all components of the U.S. Army – active-duty, Army Reserve and National Guard. Their mission is to provide continuous presence in Palau and other Pacific island countries across Oceania, assist the U.S. embassy, and reinforce lasting and meaningful relationships in the region.
4 / 4 Show Caption + Hide Caption – Maj. Gamble See, Laison Team Officer in Charge for the Republic of Palau and Capt. Jason Muise, Commander of the 102nd Forward Resuscitative Surgical Team based out of Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington, Assist in surveying efforts during an exercise on the island of Anguar, Palau, September 8. Task Force Oceania is a newly formed 9th MSC Task Force consisting of Soldiers from all components of the U.S. Army – active-duty, Army Reserve and National Guard. Their mission is to provide continuous presence in Palau and other Pacific island countries across Oceania, assist the U.S. embassy, and reinforce lasting and meaningful relationships in the region. (Photo Credit: U.S. Army) VIEW ORIGINAL

In a show of commitment to the nation of Palau and a Free and Open Indo-Pacific, U.S. Army Pacific (USARPAC) Soldiers from Alaska, Washington, and Hawaii took part in a training exercise on the island of Anguar as part of Defender Pacific 2020 (DP 20).

Two Soldiers from the U.S. Army Reserve’s 9th Mission Support Command (MSC) Task Force Oceania were instrumental to the planning, coordination and execution of the exercise.

Task Force Oceania is a newly formed 9th MSC Task Force consisting of Soldiers from all components of the U.S. Army – active-duty, Army Reserve and National Guard. Their mission is to provide continuous presence in Palau and other Pacific island countries across Oceania, assist the U.S. embassy, and reinforce lasting and meaningful relationships in the region.

DP 20 brought over 125 Soldiers and a Logistics Support Vessel carrying two High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS) to the tiny island of Anguar, Palau. An exercise of this size and scope was unprecedented for the island nation.

“The plan to execute DP 20 requried a great deal of coordination,” said Maj. Matthew “Gamble” See, Task Force Oceania liaison team officer-in-charge for Palau. This plan included coordinating four branches of the US Military to clear and improve the Anguar Airfield for C-130 operations. In addition, as part of the Embassy’s Country Team, I engaged state and national government entities to secure support, permits and approvals for the exercise to move forward.”

See added, “This plan allowed for validation of C-130 operations out of a second airfield in Palau, the anchor of the second island chain. It also provided proof of concept for clearing and certifying an airstrip in a remote area of the world under tight time constraints. This not only bolstered support locally for US military presence, but also sent a powerful signal regarding our capabilities and commitment within the region.”

“From my perspective, it is vital for the [United States] to demonstrate a persistent presence here in Palau and across the greater Indo-Pacific region,” said U.S. Ambassador to Palau John Hennessy-Niland. “We have enjoyed a partnership for the past 75 years with Palau, and it is as strong as ever. Military elements such as the civic action team, Task Force Oceania liaisons, and exercises like Koa Moana 20 and Defender Pacific play important roles in demonstrating that presence and commitment.”

The two Soldiers of Task Force Oceania’s Team Palau were hand-picked for their specific talents and experience. Maj. See is a seasoned civil affairs officer with many years of experience. Civil affairs operations consists of a multitude of tasks with a primary emphasis on engaging with the civilian population within the area of operation.

Sgt. Florence Yanglimau, the cultural non-commissioned officer for Team Palau, was born on the nearby island of Saipan and is a native to the region. Yangilmau was handpicked to serve as a cultural liaison because of her intimate knowledge of the people and culture of Micronesia and her familiarity with the native language.

“Assisting with this exercise was very rewarding, but playing a part in the building of this airstrip in Anguar was especially meaningful because I know it will help the people of Palau,” said Yangilmau.

“I am proud of my heritage as a native to this region, but I am also very proud to be an American Soldier,” Yangilmau added. “To serve both the people of Palau and the U.S. Army [as part of Task Force Oceania] is a unique experience, and I feel fortunate to have this opportunity.”

Task Force Oceania stands ready to support U.S. allies in the Pacific and is a demonstration of the United States’ enduring commitment to the people of Oceania.

Related Links

Army.mil: Asia-Pacific News

STAND-TO!: U.S. Army Allies and Partners

Army.mil: Worldwide News