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    The Importance of a Strong Opposing Force

    The importance of a strong opposing force

    Photo By Sgt. Tyler OConnell | U.S. Army Soldiers assigned to the 1st Battalion 4th Infantry Regiment return fire...... read more read more



    Story by Spc. Tyler OConnell 

    Joint Multinational Readiness Center

    Opposing forces are a key role in Combined Resolve XIII, in Hohenfels, Germany, Jan. - Feb.,2020.

    The 1st Battalion, 4th Infantry Regiment, used as OPFOR, is a highly motivated and highly trained group of Soldiers.

    “We have to operate on both sides of the spectrum,” said 1st Sgt. Charles Bentley, first sergeant of Apache Company, 1-4 Infantry. “We are here to facilitate training for the rotational units that come in, and we also have to maintain readiness on our level as an operational battalion.

    Being OPFOR and keeping up on normal Soldier skills is not an easy task.

    “It creates a difficulty when you have so many rotations in a year, and you still have to train as a regular Soldier,” said Bentley. “At the end of the day, we are still infantrymen.”

    OPFOR use a lot of the tactics that they learn as infantrymen, but also need to be trained in multiple enemy tactics.

    “We try to mirror our tactics as much as possible,” said Bentley. “But there are differences of the enemy that we try to replicate. We will take on different doctrine and try to incorporate those into our tactics to give rotational units more realistic training.”

    Participants of Combined Resolve use Multiple Integrated Laser Engagement System to help create more realism. MILES gear is used by the U.S. military, and other armed forces around the world, for training purposes. It uses lasers and blank cartridges to simulate actual battle.

    “We try to replicate the type of enemy that they may see on a battlefield,” said Bentley. “And we give them the best fight we can on a fair MILES gear battlefield.”

    OCT (observer, coach/trainer) teams are on the battlefield as well, making sure the playing field stays fair.

    “The OCT’s are the mediators between us to keep the battle fair,” said Bentley. “There are times we would like to push a little harder because we have that momentum, but we do have to pull off the gas a little bit because we know they will not get any training value out of it.”

    OPFOR has a clear advantage knowing the training area that they call the box.

    “I don’t think it is a disadvantage for us because our job here is to help facilitate their training,” said Bentley. “As much as we would like to, our job is not to beat them, destroy them or belittle them. We are here to give them the best training value they can receive.”

    It is a learning opportunity for any commander or leader where they can reorient themselves and their troops and proceed to get back in the fight.

    “I think all in all it is a pretty fair fight,” said Bentley. “I think the OCT teams do a great job of mediating the battlefield, we are here to better the units training in a safe environment.”



    Date Taken: 02.02.2020
    Date Posted: 02.05.2020 08:35
    Story ID: 361650
    Location: HOHENFELS, BY, DE 

    Web Views: 245
    Downloads: 0