By Lance Cpl. Laura CardosoJuly 19, 2011
Improvised explosive devices are dangerous to war fighters because insurgents are constantly adapting and modifying the way they are made and used.
With IED's constantly evolving classes, such as the one presented by the Asia-Pacific Counter-IED Center during Talisman Sabre 2011, are vital to keeping troops alive.
"We came out here to give the Soldiers, Marines, Seamen, Airmen and foreign partner nations the best, most up-to-date, C-IED tactics, techniques, procedures and information we can," said Richard Bell, Asia Pacific C-IED Center trainer. "When I was on deployments, this training didn't exist. Training is getting better and better as years go on and we are enhancing the chances of survivability for the troops ten fold."
Twenty-five trainers from the center presented the C-IED course to the U.S. and Australian forces to keep them up to date and to prepared them for future IED hazards. The C-IED team took each platoon on a one-day rotation through various IED courses to allow students to apply what they learned in the class.
"I learned a lot out here,"said Sgt. Miguel Diaz, 2nd Infantry Battalion, 23rd Infantry Regiment, 4th Striker Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division squad leader. "I learned about stuff I wouldn't have thought to look for in IED's. This is important because if you don't have the subject matter expert telling you what he has learned in his experience, you'll have to go off your experience and that may not always be enough to keep your guys safe. We need these classes to keep our troops alive."
The course begins with a period of instruction on IED history, identification and base line knowledge of componentry. A practical application lab, an observation lane to spot IED's in terrain, a static display of various forms of IED's, and a dismounted patrol lane, are included in the course.
To give the students a realistic training experience, instructors also use audible signatures to let the troops know when they detonated a simulated IED.
"These guys get to learn what to do once an IED is found and what to do if it went off," said Bell. This is giving them the ability to really get a feel for what may come."
"Having a group focused on what is going on in the world and how IED's are changing is a great thing," said Gunnery Sgt. Phillip Shadden, Environmental Service Detachment team leader. "It's important for us to continue learning because as war and tactics change, we have to change with them. We have to continually learn how best to be prepared for what is out there."
TS11 is an exercise designed to train U.S. and Australian forces to plan and conduct Combined Task Force operations to improve combat readiness and interoperability on a variety of missions from conventional conflict to peacekeeping and humanitarian assistance efforts.