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US forces host capabilities exercise

Apr 22, 2010

By Spc. Jared Eastman, 1st AAB, 3rd ID, USD-C Public Affairs

BAGHDAD -- Soldiers from 5th Squadron, 7th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Advise and Assist Brigade, 3rd Infantry Division, conducted a capabilities exercise at Contingency Operating Station Falcon, April 15, for the Iraqi Security Forces that incorporated almost every mission enabler the brigade could offer to assist the ISF in its future missions.

"Today, we had a capabilities exercise demonstration where we brought together all the partners from 2nd [Federal Police]," said Maj. Michael Sullivan, operations officer for 5th Squadron. "We wanted to show [Iraqi generals and dignitaries] how our partnership has evolved since we took over the mission of partnering with 2nd FP."

The Soldiers and policemen from the 2nd Federal Police Division demonstrated their ability to assault an objective, perform first aid, evacuate casualties by either air or ground and perform riot control techniques.

"We've been working on this since we started partnering with 2nd Federal Police," said Maj. Sullivan. "It has really been a great learning experience for both forces."

The exercise also included dog teams and robots that were employed as part of the brigade's explosive ordnance disposal team, static displays and a hands-on, non-lethal class that covered rubber bullets and lasers.

"The greatest benefits for showcasing these capabilities are so Iraqi Federal Police officers have a better understanding for the skills and technology we can assist them with," said Capt. Jonathan Heist, 5/7 Cav. assistant operations officer.

The capabilities exercise was aptly named as Iraqi Federal Police, working jointly with U.S. Soldiers, were able to impressively demonstrate their newly learned skills.

Soldiers who have returned to Iraq for another tour say they are impressed with how the two forces are now working together.

"To come here six years after my first trip to Iraq - I'm just amazed at how far we've come in partnering and combined operations," said Maj. Sullivan.

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