YAVORIV, Ukraine ― Soldiers from the 21st Theater Sustainment Command provided logistical support to the U.S. Army in Europe-led multi-national exercise Rapid Trident 11, which was held here July 25 at the International Peacekeeping and Security Center.
The exercise, which involves more than 1,600 personnel from more than 12 nations across Europe, strengthens international military partnering and, this year, consists of a multinational airborne operation and field training exercise designed to enhance joint combined interoperability with allied and partner nations.
Housing, transportation and many other logistical requirements for the multinational airborne operation were major concerns for the planners of Rapid Trident 11, but thanks to the Soldiers of the 21st TSC, the exercise went off without a hitch and provided a unique challenge to the 21st TSC Soldiers. They were able to operate seamlessly in a foreign country where English was not the primary language.
“Some of the obstacles we overcame were the language barriers and culturally the way things are done,” said Maj. Melissa Field, assigned to the 18th Military Police Brigade and the U.S. national support element officer in charge. “Some of the militaries are organized differently and we were just trying to understand the differences and work through them.”
For this exercise, the 21st TSC created a team of logisticians from Soldiers assigned to the 18th MP Bde. based out of Sembach, Germany, the
16th Sustainment Brigade from Bamberg, Germany, and the 386th Movement Control Team from Vicenza, Italy.
“This team provides support to the U.S. forces and support to other partner nations. We provide food, fuel and the coordination of transportation assets,” Field said.
Though the team came together in the Ukraine for Rapid Trident 11 from three separate locations, they see themselves as one unit supporting the exercise.
“We arrived before everyone and received their equipment. Once everyone leaves, we will push their equipment back,” said 1st Lt. Kevin Wilson, the mobility officer for the 386th MCT.
Rapid Trident 11 ends today, and the Soldiers of the 21st TSC will continue to meet the logistical needs of the exercise and take the lessons learned back to their home stations to build upon for the future.
“This is a great opportunity for the paratroopers here to take part in an exercise with multiple countries,” said Sgt. 1st Class Antheus Straughn, the 391st Combat Sustainment Support Battalion, supply noncommissioned officer in charge.
“This exercise is very important and it enhances our ability to work with our partner nations,” Fields said. “It makes our relationship stronger. We
learned to recognize our differences and overcame them.”