Ukraine hosts NATO-standard international Rapid Trident 2017 military drills


The Rapid Trident 2017 military drills are continuing at the Yavoriv training center in western Ukraine. Thousands of army personnel from more than a dozen countries are taking part in the maneuvers which include handling weapons and military hardware. Peacekeeping and stability operations are just some of the main aims of the drills which range from ground training to computer assisted exercises. The Rapid Trident exercises also include medical evacuation, tactical airdrop, and logistics planning.

Large-scale military exercises that include the U.S. and several other military units of NATO countries have kicked off in western Ukraine’s Yavoriv district. The military exercises focus on defensive operations and enhancing joint interoperability with allied nations. It’s also a chance for the Ukrainian military to display and test its military capabilities while operating with their partners, that’s according to Colonel David Jordan the US multinational training group commander.

Col. David Jordan, Multinational Training Group — Ukraine Commander

Rapid Trident is a multinational exercise that involves over 1600 soldiers from 14 different nations. During this exercise, we will stress every level of command from platoon through brigade with computer-simulated exercises, situational training lanes, ultimately culminating with force on force training exercise.

The US will continue to train and advise the Ukrainian security forces until 2020. The multinational drills at the Yavoriv Combat Training Center began some two years ago, with military specialists from NATO countries training Ukrainian servicemen. Since that time a lot has changed. Colonel David Jordan explained how much the Ukrainian forces have developed over the years.

Col. David Jordan, Multinational Training Group — Ukraine Commander

The last couple of years, they really made a lot of progress. When the United States forces showed up in 2015, most of the training was at the individual level. The U.S. was leading a lot of that training. Now, the Ukrainians lead all the training from the individual level through the platoon level, and in some cases the company level, with the U.S. and allies just mentoring that level alone the way. As that transition is taking place, we are spending more time training the brigade staffs and battalion staffs, and training and mentoring the CTC staff (the Combat Training Center staff), so that they will be left with an institution that will carry on for years into the future. They have also just completed a state-of-the-art simulation center that will allow them to train everything from the platoon through the division level in a computer-assisted mode, which will save them time, money, lots of other resources.

The annual drills Rapid Trident-2017 will last two weeks, coming to a conclusion on September 23.

  • Ukraine has been hosting Rapid Trident drills for the fifth time since 2013.
  • Massive Russia-Belarus drills Zapad 2017 to kick off in Belarus and Russia on September 14.

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