Swedish soldiers, assigned to the Swedish Air Defense Regiment, visited with U.S. Soldiers assigned to the 5th Battalion, 7th Air Defense Artillery Regiment, 10th Army Air and Missile Defense Command, in Baumholder to collaborate and mutually understand the operational depth of the defense of European allies and partners on Aug. 18-20.
“We aim to learn from each other in the ways our countries approach air defense.” said Lt. Col. Justin Logan, commander of the 5th Battalion, 7th Air Defense Artillery Regiment. “Each and every event we do with our partners and allies we learn more about ourselves and each other. This continues to strengthen the bonds we have with the Swedish air defense forces.”
The Swedish armed forces and the U.S. military have a strong partnership, Logan explained. The Swedish visit was to observe U.S. training and standard operating procedures. They also discussed future training that the two countries will be conducting both in Sweden and throughout the European theater.
Aurora 20, an air defense exercise to be held in Sweden with the U.S., has been postponed due to COVID-19, according to a statement by the Swedish armed forces. The exercise, which will include the air defense and air force units of both countries, will resume at a later date to be determined.
This engagement has not been the first time the U.S. has collaborated with the Swedish Air Defence Regiment this year. This visit is part of ongoing engagements between the United States and Sweden.
The 10th Army Air and Missile Defense Commander Brig. Gen. Gregory Brady and Maj. Rory McGovern, 10th Army Air and Missile Defense Command’s Deputy G5, visited Sweden in February 2020. Brady and leaders of the Swedish armed forces discussed the modernization and expansion of Sweden’s air defense capabilities. They also discussed the possibility of future entry into NATO-recognized and NATO-sponsored exercises, such as Astral Knight and Tobruq Legacy.
Sweden signed an agreement to purchase U.S-made Patriot air and missile defense systems in August of 2018, according to an article written in Defense News.
The Swedish delegation hopes to learn more about the Patriot system from the experience of the U.S. air defense units in Europe, Swedish Armed Forces Lt. Col. Thomas Wessman, the deputy commander of the Swedish Air Defense Regiment, said. He expressed excitement for the future of our partnership.
“The cooperation between our countries has been going on for about two years with air defense.” Wessman said. “We are here to learn. From the highest command, all the way from Brig. Gen. Brady, to the 5th Battalion Soldiers, the cooperation from the American air defense family has been great.”