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Army April 28, 2011
Eyes on the mission
SOLDIERS from 2RAR have been
sustaining a high training tempo for
the past two months in preparation
for deployment to Afghanistan later
this year with MTF 3.
Although training has centred on
infantry fighting skills at the platoon
level, the primary role of the 2RAR
soldiers will be to mentor the Afghan
National Army to ensure it is able to
provide the stable and secure environ-
ment the Afghan Government is striv-
ing towards for its people.
The recent phase of the training
culminated in a battalion live-fire exer-
cise at Townsville Field Training Area,
Exercise Afghan Black, and CTC-led
specific training exercises from March
C Coy Operational Mentoring
and Liaison Team Commander Capt
Chris Isles said the live-fire exercise
was an opportunity for the soldiers to
work with other military assets such
as artillery, engineers and cavalry in
a demanding and complex combined-
"Operating together provided an
excellent opportunity for us to consoli-
date as a group, conduct live training
with assets which we wouldn't nor-
mally have access to and practise those
basic essential skills every soldier
should have," Capt Isles said.
"The training provided was both
physically and mentally demand-
ing, with the situations recreating
the complexities of operating within
Afghanistan's varied cultural and geo-
The primary aim of the exercise
was to establish a realistic, mission-
specific training environment for
At the culmination of the training,
companies rotated through the CTC-
led specific training exercises.
The soldiers were presented with
confronting, complicated and realistic
scenarios that tested their training and
The scenarios required mental flex-
ibility and out-of-the-box thinking by
junior commanders in order to manage
hostile and potentially hostile situa-
Capt Isles said in the final assess-
ment soldiers were deemed to be
incredibly dedicated to the task and
were able to quickly adapt to the new
"All the soldiers who participated
in both Ex Afghan Black and the STX
lanes should be proud of their efforts
as their actions have demonstrated that
they are motivated, well-equipped and
highly trained for the pending deploy-
ment," Capt Isles said.
"With the MRE starting in May, the
soldiers of 2RAR who will deploy as
MTF 3 will continue to focus on fine-
tuning their skills and teamwork prior
to the deployment."
Realistic scenarios: From left, Pte Shiva Chetty, Lt Timothy Coulter and Pte Ben Braithwaite enter a simulated Afghan village during Exercise Afghan
Black at the Townsville Field Training Area.
Photo by Fiona Harding courtesy of the Townsville Bulletin
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