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Friday, July 11, 2014

27th Brigade to conduct annual training at Fort Drum and Fort Dix, N.J


New York Army National Guard soldiers training at Fort Drum in 2013 (FILE
SYRACUSE — More than 2,000 New York National Guard Soldiers from the 27th Infantry Brigade Combat Team will conduct annual training at Fort Drum and Fort Dix, N.J this summer, including those from Lockport and Niagara Falls. The first deployment of soldiers begins this weekend and the training continues through the middle of August.

The brigade training will include Soldier Common Task Training and weapons live fire.

"This year's New York Army National Guard annual training program is designed to allow our Citizen Soldiers and their leaders to focus on traditional military skills that are useful when dealing with national armies as well as insurgent forces," said Major General Patrick Murphy, the Adjutant General of New York. " While the New York Army National Guard was deploying forces to Iraq and Afghanistan, the focus was on those specific battlefields."

"The focus on one kind of threat – guerilla warfare or terrorists in a third world country is shifting back to multiple threats our military has to be prepared for," Murphy said.

"The leadership, organizational, and logistics skills our Soldiers fine-tune while training for their war-time mission, are also useful skills when National Guard Soldiers respond to state emergencies and natural disasters," Murphy added.

The brigade consists of six battalion sized units (400-600 Soldiers each). These are:

  • 27th Brigade Special Troops Battalion (BSTB) headquartered in Buffalo; with units in Lockport, Syracuse and Rochester;
  • 2nd Battalion, 108th Infantry, headquartered in Utica, with units in Geneseo, Morrisonville, Saranac Lake, Ogdensburg, Gloversville, Ithaca and Leeds;
  • 1st Battalion, 258th Field Artillery, headquartered in Jamaica, Queens; with elements in the Bronx and New Windsor;
  • 1st Battalion, 69th Infantry, headquartered in Manhattan; with elements in Camp Smith near Peekskill, and Farmingdale;
  • 2nd Squadron, 10st Cavalry, headquartered in Niagara Falls; with elements in Jamestown, Geneva, and Buffalo;
  • 427th Brigade Support Battalion headquartered in Syracuse; with units in Rochester, Buffalo and at Fort Drum.

With the exception of the 69th Infantry who will train at Fort Dix, N.J., Fort Drum in Jefferson County will be the epicenter of this year's training.

The 27th Brigade Special Troops Battalion Soldiers, who provide speciality skills like combat engineering, intelligence and signal support to the brigade, will conduct training on how to operate and run a tactical operations center. They will train on preparing combat orders, individual weapons qualifications, and training with the Shadown unmanned aerial vehicle.

The 2nd Battalion, 108th will conduct weapons training along with infantry maneuver training that incorporates fire support and medical training.

The 1st battalion, 258th Field Artillery will focus on firing artillery tables that at times will incorporate UH-60 Blackhawk helicopters flying cannon into position to conduct artillery raids.

The Soldiers of 101st Cavalry wiil sharpen their skills on individual weapons qualification on the M-4 and M-240B machine gun, to include night firing. They will also conduct a reconnaissance field training exercise and a squad live fire exercise . Their training will also include an exercise involving the use of inflatible boats.

The 427th Brigade Support Battalion will use this year's annual training to hone their support tasks. They will focus on weapons qualification, convoy training, and driver's and maintenance training.

The Soldiers of the 69th Infantry Regiment will conduct common task training, weapons qualification, and infantry maneuver training at Fort Dix, N.J.

The goal of the training, said Col. Joseph Biehler, the 27th Infantry Brigade Combat Team commander, is to conduct individual, squad, and section level training during this year's annual training events to better prepare the brigade for its' significant training events in 2015-2016.

"Many of our Soldiers are veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and these two-week training events allow our veterans to pass on that knowledge to our new Soldiers," Biehler added.

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