‘Cacti’ Soldiers execute ‘platoon-to-platoon’ exchange in Philippines

| August 21, 2015 | 0 Comments
Company B, 2-35th Infantry Regiment,, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, and the Philippines' 3rd Inf. Battalion, 7th ID, conduct urban attack training at Fort Magsaysay, Philippines, as part of an interoperability exchange. (Photo by Capt. Andrew Garwitz, commander, Co. B, 2nd Battalion, 35th Infantry Regiment, 25th Inf. Division)

Company B, 2-35th Infantry Regiment,, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, and the Philippines’ 3rd Inf. Battalion, 7th ID, conduct urban attack training at Fort
Magsaysay, Philippines, as part of an interoperability exchange. (Photo by Capt. Andrew Garwitz, commander, Co. B, 2nd Battalion, 35th Infantry Regiment, 25th Inf. Division)

Capt. Tanya Roman
3rd Brigade Combat Team Public Affairs
25th Infantry Division

FORT MAGSAYSAY, Philippines — “Cacti” Soldiers received a unique opportunity to enhance interoperability between the U.S. and Philippine armies by executing a platoon-to-platoon exchange as part of Operation Lupao, July 9-Aug. 8.

The exercise allowed Bravo Company, 2nd Battalion, 35th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division, to partner with soldiers from the Philippines’ 3rd Infantry Battalion, 7th Inf. Div., and conduct various partnership training that included medical skills training, close quarters and urban battle training, company size attack exercises and cultural exchanges, here.

Company B, 2-35th Infantry Regiment,, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, and the Philippines' 3rd Inf. Battalion, 7th ID, conduct urban attack training at Fort Magsaysay, Philippines, as part of an interoperability exchange. (Photo by Capt. Andrew Garwitz, commander, Co. B, 2nd Battalion, 35th Infantry Regiment, 25th Inf. Division)

Company B, 2-35th Infantry Regiment,, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, and the Philippines’ 3rd Inf. Battalion, 7th ID, conduct urban attack training at Fort
Magsaysay, Philippines, as part of an interoperability exchange. (Photo by Capt. Andrew Garwitz, commander, Co. B, 2nd Battalion, 35th Infantry Regiment, 25th Inf. Division)

“The U.S. Army has a lot more in common with the Philippine army than first meets the eye,” said Capt. Andrew Garwitz, commander, Co. B. “We share similar doctrine and tactics, and they have a welcoming culture that lends itself well with working with another army.”

Although this is the first time the Army has been involved in Operation Lupao, the U.S. and the Philippines have a rich history as allies. Both countries participated in Exercise Balikatan, which just completed its 32nd year and is a testament to the strength of the ongoing partnership.

“There is a brotherhood and a closeness with our Filipino counterparts,” said Sgt. Joseph Forrosuelo, a Bravo Co. team leader. “We work together flawlessly.”

“The Philippine army has been facing an insurgency for a long time now, so we have a lot we can learn from them as far as counterinsurgency and how to operate in the jungle,” said Garwitz “The best way we can do it is by working side-by-side with them.”

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Category: Deployed Forces, Exercises, News, Training

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