MISAWA AIR BASE, Japan --
On an overcast day, U.S. Soldiers creep through trees and foliage with faint noises of cracking twigs under each step. All of a sudden, an explosion goes off and the team readies themselves for tactical combat and mission execution.
Delta Detachment, 1st Space Company, Joint Tactical Ground Station personnel practiced their combat tactics on Misawa’s paintball fields, May 24, ensuring readiness for any situation that comes their way.
The Soldiers' spouses were also able to join in to experience what their service members endure on the job.
“Although their primary duty is not with infantrymen, they still need to know how to fight like one,” said U.S. Army Capt. Lee Schroeder, the JTAGS commander. “I have finite amount of time to train them and bottom line, no matter where you work or what branch you’re in, there is always a chance to use this training in a deployed location.”
During the training, Soldiers worked on techniques for react-to-contact and indirect fire situations.
React-to-contact occurs when opposing forces ambush friendly forces and combat ensues; Soldiers respond with suppressing fire to regain control of the field. Indirect fire techniques follow when it is generally safe to presume the enemy will call for backup, and artillery rounds are sent.
“Not only does this training meet our annual requirements, it also reinforces our basic skills that every Soldier and officer should know,” Schroeder said.
The unit used smoke grenades and trip flares this year, which is something normally simulated.
“I feel really good about the training,” said U.S. Army Private Fabien Juarez, a JTAGS operator. “This is my first unit and getting this type of experience to implement into our future missions is awesome to me.”
Juarez added he is thankful for his leadership here in Misawa, because they ensure their spouses are involved to give them a better understanding of their service members’ roles.
“They don’t get to go through basic training with their spouse,” Schroeder said. “It’s unique for the spouses to have an opportunity to see and actually be a part of what their husbands or wives go through.”
Schroeder said every bit of training they do is crucial to their operations.
“An important concept of this training is it builds a team,” Schroeder said. “When they go out into combat they will be ready to execute the mission.”