Victory Corps conducted their third command post exercise at Fort Knox, Kentucky, and Camp Ripley, Minnesota, Aug. 1-6, in preparation for the upcoming warfighter culminating training event in Grafenwoehr, Germany, that once successfully completed, will certify the corps headquarters’ ability to take responsibility of subordinate commands for future operations.
For the exercise, V Corps Soldiers assigned to the rear command post traveled to the corps’ RCP located at Camp Ripley, Minn. to work with the Minnesota National Guard’s 34th Infantry Division and the U.S. Army Reserve’s 103rd Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) from Des Moines, Iowa, along with other special purpose enablers in the Army Reserve and Army National Guard from various locations. The 3rd Infantry Division at Fort Stewart, Georgia, also supported the exercise while the V Corps tactical and main command posts remained at Fort Knox, Kentucky, to command and control operations in a geographically dispersed environment.
Approximately 2,400 Soldiers participated in the training exercise that provided an expansive exercise support construct in a computer based simulation, where large scale ground combat operations are conducted in a multi-domain environment.
The newly welcomed V Corps deputy commanding general of maneuver has seen each iteration of the exercise and is excited about working with V Corps Soldiers outside of the exercise construct.
“This is actually my third CPX with V Corps,” said Brig. Gen. Matthew Van Wagenen, V Corps DCG-M, who will be stationed at V Corp’s forward command post in Poznan, Poland. “I look forward to the future and being with the Soldiers that are with me and deploy forward to Poland.”
The importance of conducting multiple command post exercises ensures that V Corps is fully capable to assume many of the operational and tactical-level command, control, and planning functions in the European theater of operations. The importance of every Soldier’s role in the exercise can’t be emphasized enough, from junior enlisted to commissioned officers, each Soldier provides a vital skill set that gives V Corps the ability to adapt to an ever changing environment.
“A corps never fights alone. A corps is an enabling headquarters that brings in a ton of capabilities to leverage against our adversaries,” said Sgt. Maj. Michael Lamkins, the V Corps operations (G3) sergeant major. “It doesn’t matter if it is in combat or in competition, everyone involved has a serious commitment to the exercise.”
The command post exercise consisted of simulated responses relating to scenarios that contribute to the declaration of NATO’s Article V. The training V Corps and assisting units received during the exercise was important for demonstrating the capacity to execute mission command and division-level offensive operations in a multinational environment, proving that the corps is committed to stand ready and support, defend, and protect all supporting NATO allies.
The reactivation of V Corps in 2020 marks a new era for security in Europe and will build stronger connections and bonds with our NATO allies and partners – once certified the “Victory Corps” will once again be a stabilizing force on the European continent.