2IBCT excels in first company-level cold hit site CALFEX

| December 12, 2017 | 0 Comments

An infantryman assigned to 2nd Battalion, 35th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division, scans through a window with an M249 machine gun during squad room-clearing training at Schofield Barracks, Hawaii, on Dec. 5, 2017. The Soldiers used the Military Operations in Urban Terrain (MOUT) site to test their battle drill proficiency with realistic and dynamic conditions. (U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Armando R. Limon, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division)

Story and photos by
Staff Sgt. David N. Beckstrom
2nd Infantry Brigade Combat Team Public Affairs
25th Infantry Division

SCHOFIELD BARRACKS — Adrenaline rushes and emotions flare during combat because decisions on the battlefield can have life or death consequences. This is the reason 2nd Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division, hits training so hard.

Soldiers from 1st Battalion, 27th Inf. Regiment, 2nd IBCT, 25th ID, participated in the first company-level cold hit site combined arms live-fire exercise, here, Dec. 4-8.

“Being able to train in a controlled and safe environment allows our Soldiers to polish their skills,” said 1st Lt. Ryan Debooy, a plans officer with 1st Bn., 27th Inf. Regt., 2nd IBCT. “However, it loses a sense of reality. The enemy won’t let our Soldiers come to their front door and practice how to defeat them. This is why a cold hit site exercise is so important.”

Infantrymen assigned to 2nd Battalion, 35th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division, scan and rush to their objective during squad room-clearing training at Schofield Barracks, Hawaii, on Dec. 5, 2017. The Soldiers used the Military Operations in Urban Terrain (MOUT) site to test their battle drill proficiency with realistic and dynamic conditions. (U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Armando R. Limon, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division)

A cold hit site refers to a training area the Soldiers have not trained on before. The Soldiers can use intelligence and images of the terrain to prepare ahead of time, but do not step onto the area until it is go-time.

“When units train on the same location for battle drill rehearsals as they do for live-fire events, they are able to perfect their tactics for that site,” said Command Sgt. Maj. Victor Benavides, the senior enlisted adviser for 1-27th Inf. “This doesn’t work in a deployed environment. Cold hit site exercises force Soldiers to be adaptable and make critical decisions on the move.”

One of the goals of this training exercise was to allow leaders to exercise initiative and critical thinking skills during the live-fire portion of the training.

“Units have gotten away from doing cold hit exercises because commanders think it is too hard, but this is exactly what we would do in a deployed environment.” said Lt. Col. Valent Bernat, the commander of 1-27th Inf. “We prepare our best by making our training as close to realistic as possible, but there will always be the sense of the unknown on the battlefield.”

A CALFEX is designed to utilize all the enablers for infantry units, such as artillery and air support to establish superior firepower on the battlefield.

“We train with the infantry because if we were to deploy we would be working alongside them,” said Spc. Ryan Reliford, a gunner in 2nd Bn., 11th Field Artillery Regt., 2nd IBCT. “Being able integrate our system and firepower with their mission allows us to be better prepared for a real fight.”

Infantrymen assigned to 2nd Battalion, 35th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division, use colored smoke to provide concealment as their maneuver to their target during squad room-clearing training at Schofield Barracks, Hawaii, on Dec. 5, 2017. The Soldiers used the Military Operations in Urban Terrain (MOUT) site to test their battle drill proficiency with realistic and dynamic conditions. (U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Armando R. Limon, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division)

Infantry units have fire direction center teams to ensure that the rounds which fire from artillery cannons are placed properly and do not endanger the Soldiers.

“Using artillery to help shape the battlefield will help us prevent loss of life from enemy fire,” said Capt. Lacey Hutchins, a fire direction center officer with 1-27th Inf. “This will also allow us to eliminate the enemy while minimizing the risk to our Soldiers.”

2nd IBCT plans to continue to execute training scenarios like this, and under the most realistic conditions, to ensure that they are always ready for whatever the nation calls upon them to do.

 

 

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