By Spc. Sharla Lewis, 3rd AAB PAO, 1st Cav. Div.February 9, 2011
CAMP BUEHRING, Kuwait - Troopers with the personal security detachment (PSD) for 3rd Advise and Assist Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division conducted key training this week at Camp Buehring, Kuwait; focusing on their roles protecting the brigade's key leaders.
The three day course culminated with live dismounted operations based on scenarios they may face this year.
On the first day of the training, Soldiers learned PSD operations, threat awareness and counter-insurgency principles in a classroom environment, then conducted mounted battle drills, vehicle recovery operations and attack on key leader fundamentals.
"Protecting the (key leader) is my main mission. I learned how to rapidly switch to my secondary weapon in the event that my primary weapon has a malfunction," said Sgt. Bernard Sims, the platoon's protective services officer. "Also, I learned how important the positioning of the (key leader) is and how to evade hostile contact."
The second day consisted of advanced close quarters marksmanship, discrimination fire, react/break contact and attack on key leader drills. The day concluded with a close quarters live fire exercise in a shoot house.
Troopers emphasized the value of this day of training and used it to hone their close-quarters firing techniques.
"We perfected our moving, timed and squad sized elements shooting and learned to trust our battle buddies by becoming familiar with their techniques," said Pvt. Darrin Batson, an infantryman from Wentworth, Mo.
Finally, on the third day of training, the platoon put their education to practice in three scenario-based live fire mounted and dismounted exercises.
Scenarios included a graduation ceremony to refine marksmanship in a crowd, a downed vehicle exercise and an ambush with casualties.
Leaders in the platoon said the training focused more on their role as a protective services element and was their final preparation for that mission.
"It focused on our actual task," said Sgt. 1st Class Rodolfo Ruiz, from Edinburg, Texas. "We actually had time to practice battle drills and had more time on the range shooting."
Ruiz said the training gave the platoon the confidence they needed to do what will be expected of them and provided the junior Soldiers an opportunity to train in leadership positions.
"I hope the Soldiers (gain) confidence in their teamwork, knowledge on their individual weapons systems and how to employ them," he said.
This training enhances the platoon's cohesive atmosphere by fine-tuning what they have accomplished all year.