HOHENFELS, Germany –At the Joint Multinational Readiness Center, the only U.S. Army Combat Training Center outside the continental U.S., Soldiers and cultures from 15 countries have unified daily in support of Combined Resolve 18.
Multinational training exercises, like CBR 18, enhance allies and partners’ ability to respond more effectively to regional crises and meet their own security needs. This builds the interoperability partnership that the JMRC was founded on. Training alongside one another has forged a family-like bond between the Soldiers.
It becomes something special that you only get in the Army
“It’s like the second you meet another Soldier it's an instant bond, you know what they've gone through, and they know what you’ve gone through,” said U.S. Army Spc. Charles Moskov, a cavalry scout assigned to 1st Battalion, 5th Cavalry Regiment, 2nd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division. “It becomes something special that I think you only get in the Army.”
Moskov, a New York native, has been working side by side with the Belgian Army for the last week. He’s now family.
“We actually adopted him already, so he’s Belgian in our eyes,” said Belgian Defense Force Cpl. David Maes, a drone pilot assigned to Intelligence, Surveillance, Target acquisition, and Reconnaissance Battalion. “You realize the mindset is the same in every Army. We’re all a team and we built a level of camaraderie that the differences aren't there anymore.”
For Maes, this is his third time being a part of Combined Resolve since 2016. Although his roles have changed over the years, the connections he makes have remained the same.
“Working with the U.S. Army has been amazing,” said Maes. “Every time I've taken part in this exercise throughout the years it’s been a great experience and I’ve developed connections with people I still have today.”
Unlike Maes, this is Moskov’s first time training with partnered NATO nations and he’s learning a lot.
“It's been fantastic working with the Belgian Army,” said Moskov. “They are a great group of guys that are very professional and experienced. We’ve been learning a lot from them because although we know how to camouflage, these guys are next level at it.”
“The U.S. has a big Army, and we have a small Army so the mindset is different. We focus on camouflage because we don't have big weapons. We must be more defensive and stealthier with our tactics,” said Maes.
That difference in tactics is what makes Combined Resolve successful
“I think this training has been a huge success,” said Moskov. “Coming out here and working with our allies and partners you get an array of different tactics and methods. We’re all working together. It’s really thrown off the enemy in this exercise. We already met our brigade objective on day four and now we're just on the defensive for a few more days holding the line. I think we've done pretty good.”
“This is what the NATO project is about,” said Maes. “Different countries, cultures and mindsets working together. We prove that we can do it every time and we’re only getting better. We look forward to exercises like Combined Resolve. Let's do more please.”