In July 2003 forces from Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa began a three-month bilateral training exercise with Ethiopian National Defense Forces at the Hurso Training Camp, northwest of Dire Dawa, Ethiopia. Infantry forces from the US Army's 10th Mountain Division, assigned to CJTF-HOA, provided infantry skills training on small unit tactics. U.S. soldiers are also addressing skills necessary for both anti and counter-terrorism missions with members of the 12th Division of the Ethiopian Army as part of the Democratic Peoples Republic of Ethiopia effort to establish the first of three new Anti-terrorism Battalions.
In addition to infantry skills training with Ethiopian forces at Hurso, CJTF-HOA forces from the U.S Army's 478th Civil Affairs Battalion were also in Ethiopia to assess and conduct initial coordination for a variety of civil-military operations in and around Dire Dawa, Galadi and Dolo Odo among other areas. CJTF representatives met with local leaders to determine needs and design plans that best meet the needs of Ethiopians in the local area.
In January 2004, elements of the Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa began operating from a temporary training facility in rural Ethiopia named "Camp United". The base will be used as a launching ground for local missions, predominately training with the Ethiopian military. The facility was named by soliers of the 3rd U.S. Infantry Regiment's Bravo Company. The camp and the missions are part of the unit's continued involvement in the Global War on Terrorism as part of the Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa.
Camp United, located on a dusty swath of austere land encompassed by the Ethiopian Military Academy in Hurso. Before Soldiers arrived, the camp area was nothing but six slabs of concrete and piles of dirt. The base now has a functioning operations center, medical center, showers, toilets, exercise and weight room, field sanitation system, and a morale and welfare tent.
A few days after establishing Camp United, company soldiers began training with the Ethiopian military. The training included infantry fundamentals such as marksmanship, physical fitness and movement techniques.