Approximately 3,000 U.S. and allied military members came here to conduct airborne training operations in Romania and Bulgaria, as part of exercise Swift Response 17, July 15.
Swift Response is a multinational exercise designed to train airborne forces and enhance interoperability among high-readiness units in Europe.
“Executing with all these resources in a joint and multinational environment, along with the complexity of operating in another country is a great training opportunity,” said U.S. Air Force Maj. Adrian Kays, mission planning cell chief with 302nd Airlift Wing, out of Peterson Air Force Base, Colorado Springs, Colorado.
The exercise features airborne forces from nine nations including Bulgaria, Canada, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Poland, Portugal, Romania, and U.S. Soldiers and Airmen. Training activities include intermediate staging base operations, two airborne operations, an air insertion of M1126 Stryker Infantry Carrier Vehicles, airfield seizure operations and an air assault operation.
Participating Air Force Reserve units hail from 22nd Air Force and include the 302nd AW, the 910th Airlift Wing, Youngstown Air Reserve Station, Youngstown, Ohio, and the 911th Airlift Wing, Pittsburgh Air Reserve Station, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
“A large part of coming out and doing this is building teamwork among our five Guard and Reserve wings, who have come together to create a larger force than any of us could put together individually,” said Kays.
Swift Response is linked to a larger series of training events known as exercise Saber Guardian 17, a U.S. Army Europe-led, multinational exercise that spans across Bulgaria, Hungary and Romania with more than 25,000 service members from 22 allied and partner nations.