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    European partners, allies converge in West Virginia for Ridge Runner Irregular Warfare Exercise planning

    European partners, allies converge in West Virginia for Ridge Runner Irregular Warfare Exercise planning

    Photo By Maj. Holli Nelson | Derek Jones of the Irregular Warfare Center (IWC) briefs participants of the Ridge...... read more read more



    Story by Maj. Holli Nelson 

    West Virginia National Guard

    The West Virginia National Guard’s Ridge Runner Irregular Warfare program hosted European Allies and partners from United Kingdom, Lithuania, Latvia, and Poland, along with U.S. Special Forces elements March 21-25, 2023, at Camp Dawson, West Virginia for a mid-planning conference (MPC) for the upcoming Ridge Runner Irregular Warfare Exercise 23-01 (RR IWX).

    The purpose of the MPC was to confirm training objectives, coordinate exercise support and refine the scenario prior to the inaugural June exercise, which will provide validation for deploying U.S. special forces elements.

    RR-IWX 23-01 will utilize six irregular warfare lanes across the State of West Virginia comprised of permissive, semi-permissive, and denied environments to accomplish U.S. special operations forces, allied and partner nation training objectives. Additionally, Joint Special Operations University and the Irregular Warfare Center (IWC) will provide an irregular warfare academics program of instruction period followed by a field exercise.

    In addition to allies and partners previously mentioned, Ridge Runner will host observers from Taiwan, Georgia, Moldova, Hungary, Qatar, Romanian, and Canada during the event.

    Throughout the MPC, syndicate working groups refined the scenario injects while participants received overview briefs from the Army Space Division, DEVCOM Army Research Labs Catalyst-Pathfinder, and the IWC. The IWC provided a brief synopsis of the National Resistance Application Seminar to attendees which will facilitate future discussion and interaction during the academic portion of RR-IWX 23-01.

    “This mid planning conference was a big step in ensuring we have everything on the right path to host a premier irregular warfare exercise for our participants, allies and partners in attendance,” state U.S. Army Maj. Michael Susick, Ridge Runner director. “There has been so much work and collaboration between Ridge Runner, IWC and our participants that has brought us to this point. I have no doubt that the exercise in June will ensure that the deploying units are tactically proficient in unconventional and irregular warfare, have demonstrated their ability to be interoperable with partner and allied forces, and are prepared to carry out their missions while overseas.”

    Ridge Runner Irregular Warfare Exercise is jointly supported through the newly established Irregular Warfare Center and will provide a validation venue for deploying Special Forces elements. The RR IWX will provide a dynamic and realistic platform to conduct irregular warfare training, develop interoperability between coalition special operations and conventional forces, enable training on mission essential tasks, and assess readiness while enhancing strategic irregular warfare capabilities.

    Participants will reconvene at Camp Dawson, West Virginia in late April to complete a final planning event before the exercise kicks off in late May.



    Date Taken: 03.28.2023
    Date Posted: 03.27.2023 13:00
    Story ID: 441253
    Location: KINGWOOD, WV, US 

    Web Views: 433
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