News: 3BCT arrives to Joint-Readiness Training Center
Story by Staff Sgt. Aaron Poe
FORT POLK, La. – Approximately 3,500 Paratroopers from the 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division, arrived at the Joint-Readiness Training Center here during the first week of October to conduct full spectrum operations exercises.
During the past nine years, JRTC trained soldiers to fight as they would in Iraq and Afghanistan primarily concentrating on counter-insurgency operations.
“For 3rd BCT, the exercise will test the logistical support and troops on ground to seize and kill the enemy,” said Command Sgt. Maj. King Parks, 3rd BCT. “It will also further build the company teams so that they are ready and prepared to fight in many different combat environments.”
Preparing to take responsibility of the Army’s global response force, 3rd BCT’s key leaders and JRTC’s trainers and mentors are preparing 3rd BCT in everything from disaster relief to full spectrum conflict.
Lt. Col. Jeffrey Bramlett, executive officer, 3rd BCT, said that this rotation is dealing with fighting an enemy with remnants of a mechanized rifle regiment instead of fighting insurgents predominantly found in the current combat zones.
For the first time in five years, using forcible entry training, Paratroopers will be jumping into a denied access area and seizing an enemy airfield.
“This is an event that is going to get us to a higher training level in a lot of areas,” said Parks. “We will definitely be familiar with those areas that we are not familiar with now.”
JRTC has a combination of situational awareness training exercises and live fire exercises that bring companies and platoons in to give them a wide variety of tactical tasks to train on.
“We wanted to preserve that because this is a great adaptation JRTC has made over the last five years,” said Bramlett.
Bramlett said that the reorientation to the full spectrum operations mindset is pivotal for leaders and soldiers to gain in the exercise.
“As we reorient the force to a more global posture, it’s prudent that we exercise not only us as the global responsive force, but also JRTC,” said Bramlett. “They maintain that capability to come in and return to a more broad base ability.”
For some platoon leaders and sergeants that have been deployed multiple times to a specific area, this training will reinvigorate the broad base of global deployablilty.
“As for the individual Paratrooper, he will gain confidence in his team,” said Parks. “There is going to be some tough training out there for us but confidence will be had by all.”