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    CREW course prepares service members for counter-IED fight

    CREW course prepares service members for counter-IED fight

    Photo By Lt.j.g. Andrew Carleen | Students at the Bagram Air Field Counter Radio-controlled Improvised Explosive Device...... read more read more



    Story by Lt.j.g. Andrew Carleen 

    Combined Joint Task Force Paladin

    BAGRAM AIR FIELD, Afghanistan - The Counter Radio-controlled IED Electronic Warfare training course here prepares students to fight the war against radio controlled improvised explosive devices in Afghanistan.

    The course is run by Combined Joint Task Force Paladin and trains students in proper maintenance, troubleshooting, and operation of their CREW devices.

    “We give Soldiers, Sailors, Marines and Airman the knowledge and skills to be functional CREW specialists,” said Senior Chief Petty Officer Larry G. Bartlett, Chief of Training and Non-commissioned Officer in Charge for Paladin CREW.

    The training in theatre fills an important gap to prepare service-members in Afghanistan who might face an RC-IED threat.

    “About eighty-percent of students who come through our course have no prior CREW training,” said Bartlett.

    CREW training gives the students a comprehensive overview of their counter-RC-IED devices and their operation.

    “When (the students) leave here, we expect them to be subject matter experts on ground-based CREW systems,” said Bartlett.

    The course takes students through classroom lessons to familiarize them with the components and employment of the devices and also through hands-on exercises where they practice performing different tasks with their CREW equipment.

    “Really we took the Ft. Huachuca CREW course, which is a two-week course, and we condensed it into a four-day course of instruction,” said Bartlett.

    The students walk away with a better understanding of how to use their systems.

    “This is going to keep me and my patrol alive out here,” said Cpl. Wade M. Tristan of the 573rd Clearance Company out of White Sands N.M.

    “We help the military meet its CREW specialist needs in theatre,” said Bartlett. “These guys are the first person in line for making sure the system is working. They’re saving lives.”

    In addition to training service members, Paladin CREW handles all aspects of CREW in theatre including testing and fielding.

    “CREW is responsible for EWO and CREW specialist training,” said Air Force Maj. Shane C. Marchand “Diesel”, the Deputy Officer in Charge for Paladin CREW. “Engineering, training, and fielding are the three pillars we focus on.”

    “We field all mounted and dismounted CREW for U.S. and some for coalition partners,” said Marchand. “Once a new piece of equipment is to be fielded, we conduct in-theatre tests to compare those to tests in the U.S. Engineers also analyze emerging threats to figure out how to combat them.”

    The CREW staff sees their job as key to the counter-IED fight in Afghanistan.

    “By having the trained personnel that come through the course weekly, we enable the Soldier to defeat the RC-IED threat,” said Marchand.
    Paladin CREW has received a lot of positive feedback on their course here.

    “We get a lot of comments from the Army students that this is the best Army course they’ve taken,” said Bartlett.

    Paladin CREW places a heavy emphasis on ensuring battle-space commanders know how to use their CREW systems and what CREW can do for them.

    “I would hope that they would understand the importance of CREW and know that it has an important place in the battle space,” said Marchand.

    “I want people to know that our class schedule and registration is available on the Paladin website,” said Bartlett.

    CJTF Paladin is responsible for counter-IED operations and training in Afghanistan.



    Date Taken: 07.24.2012
    Date Posted: 07.28.2012 00:25
    Story ID: 92293
    Location: BAGRAM AIR FIELD, AF 
    Hometown: YORKTOWN, VA, US

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