Joint exercise expands cooperation in Northern Command

Commanders from a spectrum of IDF forces convened for a special joint training exercise in order to get to know the elements that they fight alongside

Date: 29/01/2013, 2:57 PM     Author: Matan Galin

Commanders from a range of different IDF corps met last week in the Northern Command's Baram Division to conduct a unique joint exercise in which they learned the procedures for operating the different unit's firepower capabilities. Commanders from the Infantry Corps, Armored Corps, Artillery Corps, Combat Intelligence Corps and the Israel Air Force convened for the exercise to deepen their knowledge about the forces that they fight alongside and improve each unit's combat capabilities.

"If you receive an iPhone without knowing how to operate it properly, you will not use most of its capabilities. The same thing goes for ground forces – when you fight alongside artillery and tanks without knowing their capabilities, and how to operate them, you will not utilize your full strength," explained Lt. Col. Ben Weisman, commander of the Artillery Corps' Dragon Brigade, who participated in the unique exercise.

The commanders became familiar with other units' capabilities in order to broaden the forces' general operational knowledge base and widen the scope for cooperation.

"The uniqueness of the day was that all the commanders – from the squad commander to the brigade commander – learned about the capabilities of artillery, combat intelligence and tanks, even if they don't work with them on an ongoing basis," Lt. Col. Weisman added.

The advantages of cooperative training at this level become apparent on the field where the forces that participated in the exercise regularly cooperate in routine security activity along the Israel-Lebanon border. Deepening the understanding of each other's capabilities and operational procedures naturally strengthens the connection between the forces and improves their cooperative abilities.

Lt. Col. Weisman summarized the exercise by saying that it "was an excellent cooperative effort between the different fighting elements. The moment that we managed to transfer the messages from one to the other, we improved the forces' professionalism, which will also be expressed in real time [scenarios]."