PRESS RELEASE: Robin Sage to begin Aug. 1

By USASOC News ServiceJuly 20, 2009

FORT BRAGG, N.C. (USASOC News Service, July 20, 2009) - Prospective Green Berets will engage in a two-week training exercise and the last phase of the Special Forces Qualification Course from Aug. 1-15 in central North Carolina.

The exercise called "Robin Sage," is conducted in or near Alamance, Anson, Cabarrus, Chatham, Davidson, Guilford, Hoke, Montgomery, Moore, Randolph, Richmond, Rowan, Scotland, Stanly and Union counties.

Considering the proximity of the exercise to the public, residents may hear blank gunfire and see occasional flares, neither of which poses risk to persons or property. Residents that encounter a problem should contact local law enforcement officials, who will immediately contact exercise control officials.

Robin Sage is conducted eight times annually and has been effectively training students for more than 50 years by the 1st Special Warfare Training Group (Airborne). Robin Sage is designed to provide realistic training in unconventional warfare tactics and techniques.A,A It is the final test of skills learned over the past 12-15 months in the Special Forces Qualification Course.

During the exercise, 8,500 square miles of central North Carolina becomes the Republic of Pineland. Over 1,000 people consisting of instructors, students, volunteers, civilian authorities and the citizens from the area participate. Local citizens portray natives and auxiliary forces while additional servicemembers role-play opposing and guerrilla forces to depict a realistic unconventional warfare environment.

Realism in Robin Sage is of high importance considering after the course and graduation students are assigned to operational detachments which are active all over the world. Past trainees have come back attesting to the realism they add to the exercise.

Safety is the number-one priority for this exercise and the following safety measures have been implemented:

A,A*A,A Formal written notification is given to the chiefs of the law enforcement agencies in the affected counties, with a follow up visit from a unit representative.

A,A*A,A All civilian and non-student military participants are briefed on procedures to follow if there is contact with law enforcement officials.

A,A*A,A Personnel role-playing as Pineland law enforcement officers wear distinctive hats and armbands.

A,A*A,A Students are instructed and tested on the exercise's rules of engagement. This includes procedures to follow if there is contact with law enforcement personnel during the exercise.

A,A*A,A Students will only wear civilian clothes if the tactical situation warrants, as

determined by the instructors and will wear a distinctive armband.

Robin Sage had its beginnings in 1952, when Col. Aaron Bank noticed the need for "real world" training. Originally, Robin Sage was known as the Cherokee Trail and Gobbler's Woods because the first exercise was played out in the Chattahoochie National Forest of Georgia. As the exercise expanded it moved to National Forests in North Carolina, Pigsah and Uwharrie.

The name changed to Robin Sage when moved closer to Robbins, NC and to pay tribute to a former Army Col. Jerry Sage, a WWII veteran and OSS officer who taught unconventional war tactics.

Officials at SWCS appreciate the help and consideration the citizens of North Carolina extend to the Soldiers participating in the exercise and ask for their continued understanding of any inconveniences the training may cause.A,A Questions concerning the exercise should be referred to U.S. Army John F. Kennedy Special Warfare Center and School Public Affairs Office at (910) 396-8390/9394 or

NOTEA,A TO MEDIA:A,A Request editors print this release in their paper or broadcast on their station to provide the citizens of central North Carolina information concer