An official website of the United States government
Here's how you know
A .mil website belongs to an official U.S. Department of Defense organization in the United States.
A lock (lock ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .mil website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Home : Media : News : News Article View
NEWS | Dec. 21, 2016

'Dreadnaught' Battalion Takes Home Lessons from Korean Gunnery Exercise

By 1st Lt. Patrina Lowrie 2nd Battalion, 34th Armor Regiment

POCHEON, Republic of Korea -- The Soldiers of 2nd Battalion, 34th Armor Regiment, 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division, conducted platform specific gunnery training at the Rodriguez Live Fire Complex, Republic of Korea from Nov. 15 to Dec. 16. 

The more than 30-day training exercise on the RLFC consisted of the "Dreadnaught" Soldiers training on the battalion's key armored vehicles, the M1A2 Abram Tank and the M2A3 Bradley Infantry Fighting Vehicle. 

According to officials from 2-34 AR, the tank and Bradley crews all maintained their qualifications, and continue to be trained, ready, and lethal infantry, armor, and reconnaissance crews to enable multi-echelon collective training at the company level and higher. If called upon, the battalion stands ready to "Fight Tonight" in support of the 2nd Infantry Division / ROK-U.S. Combined Division's mission to deter regional aggression and maintain peace on the Korean peninsula
In addition to the armored crews, the scout and mortar platoons also qualified on their weapon systems during the 30-day exercise. The platoons conducted multiple platform specific gunnery tables during the training event in support of the battalion's contingency force mission.

"For the last five weeks, the battalion has sharpened our gunnery and combined arms maneuver skills at Rodriguez Live Fire Complex," said Lt. Col. Bryan Harris, the battalion's commander. "This training has ensured that the Soldiers are at the highest levels of readiness and are prepared to accomplish any mission. This training has set the foundation for all the operations we will conduct throughout the rest of our time in Korea."

Leading up to the gunnery exercise, the "Dreadnaught" Soldiers maximized the training opportunities in the virtual training environment. Soldiers mastered their crew duties and fire commands through the use of Bradley advanced training system, or BATS, and advanced gunnery training system, or AGTS, on Camp Casey prior to their live-fire execution at the RLFC. The virtual systems allowed the crews to practice target acquisition and engagement techniques in order to achieve confidence with their platform specific systems prior to conducting collective live fire training. 

"The battalion went through a comprehensive training program that included training in simulators, testing on the basic skills required to operate the equipment effectively and safely, and ensuring the battalion is prepared to execute all of our missions," said Maj. Jacob Kaldor, the battalion's operations officer.

Enablers from multiple echelons were integrated into the training scenarios, which exposed the battalion's platoon leaders to inorganic assets they can use on the battlefield. 

"The integration of engineer assets during the Super Table XII is great value added to our training because it allows (platoon leaders) to get reps on one of our (mission essential task list) tasks and it allows them to build those relationships with enabler-leadership that is essential to the success of combined-arms operations," said 1st Lt. Juan Quiroz, the battalion engineer.

Additional assets outside of the brigade were also utilized to help create a wide range of capabilities on the simulated battlefield for the battalion.

"Efforts culminated with the Gunnery Table XII, where platoons were able to plan, integrate, and employ organic and attached enablers to include 120 mm mortars, Kiowa, and Apache aviation assets to accomplish our key collective tasks," said Capt. Matt White, the commander of Company C. "Our mission readiness is confirmed by their actions."

The battalion's fires and effects coordination cell, the team responsible for coordinating artillery, air support and other indirect fire support, provided massing fires while integrating surface to surface and air to ground assets in order to enable armored and mechanized Infantry platoons to reach their objective. 

"The terrain on the peninsula is not conducive for effective voice and digital communications, but the adaptable fires team leaders in this organization were able to identify issues, troubleshoot, and transmit digital call for fires to the Mortars in a timely manner," said Cpt. Brandon Morse, the battalion's fire support officer.

"It was a good opportunity to practice volley fire to create shock effect and discord on the enemy," added 1st Lt. Aaron Beyer, a platoon leader with Company B.

"Gunnery was a great experience for me as a driver," said Pfc. Cody McCartney, a driver assigned to Scout Platoon, Headquarters, Headquarters Company. "I was able to refine my skills, maneuvering with the platoon, and realized that I could really help my crew by calling out targets that I could see through my driver's video enhanced." 

For armored crews, conducting the most realistic training possible is key to success on the battlefield.

"Crew gunnery is the foundation upon which an armored company draws its strength," said Cpt. Andrew McLellan, the commander of Company A. "The ability to quickly acquire targets and engage with accurate lethal direct fire enables the unit to impose its will against the enemy. The skills refined during our gunnery here at Rodriguez Live Fire Complex support the 'Fight Tonight' standard of readiness and further enhance our commitment to the US-ROK alliance."

Soldiers on the ground and in the tanks and Bradleys also understand the importance of conducting training like they've completed over the 30-day exercise.

"Gunnery is a true test of a crew's proficiency to not only fight their tank, but also to engage and destroy targets," said Sgt. Stetson Countryman, an M1A2 Abram tank gunner with Company A. "Gunnery at the Rodriguez Live Fire Complex was challenging due to a wide variety of targetry and the terrain of the range."

The "Dreadnaught" battalion will continue to hone their skills throughout their nine-month deployment to the Korean peninsula as other battalions from the 1st ABCT utilize the ranges at RLFC to maintain their skills as trained and ready armored units.



United States-Japan-Australia Trilateral Defense Ministers' Meeting (TDMM) 2024 Joint Statement, May 2, 2024
May 3, 2024 - Australian Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Defence Richard Marles, Japanese Minister of Defense Kihara Minoru, and U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin III convened a Trilateral Defense Ministerial Meeting in Hawaii...

Austin Lauds Strong Ties Between Key Allies in Indo-Pacific
Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III is greeted by Navy Adm. John Aquilino, 26th Commander of U.S. Indo-Pacific Command, upon arrival to Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii,  for the Indo-Pacom change of command ceremony, May 1, 2024.
May 3, 2024 - Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III underscored the United States' commitment to deepening ties with key allies throughout the Indo-Pacific after meeting with his counterparts from Australia, Japan and the Philippines.  ...

Nurturing Communities: U.S., Philippines Share Ideas During Civil-Military Operations SMEE
Armed Forces of the Philippines Spokesperson Col. Francel Padilla-Taborlupa, speaks on the topic of civil affairs’ role in national defense matters during a Civil-Military Operations subject matter expert exchange as part of Exercise Balikatan 24 at Camp Aguinaldo, Manila, Philippines, April 29, 2024. AFP and U.S. CMO specialists joined together to share the best civil affairs practices and their experiences when military forces were called to support civilian populations during the COVID-19 pandemic, natural disasters, and refugee crises. BK 24 is an annual exercise between the Armed Forces of the Philippines and the U.S. military designed to strengthen bilateral interoperability, capabilities, trust, and cooperation built over decades of shared experiences. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Pedro Tenorio)
May 2, 2024 - Service members from the U.S. Army and U.S. Marine Corps gathered at the Armed Forces of the Philippines Civil-Military Operations school to conduct a subject matter expert exchange on humanitarian civic assistance best...

Guam National Guard launches State Partnership with Palau
From left, Senior Enlisted Advisor Tony Whitehead, senior enlisted advisor to the chief of U.S. National Guard Bureau; U.S. Ambassador Joel Ehrendreich; Palau President Surangel Whipps; Guam Gov. Lou Leon Guerrero; and Col. Michael Cruz, adjutant general of the Guam National Guard, formalize a State Partnership Program partnership between Guam and Palau in Koror, Palau, April 29, 2024. The partnership builds on thousands of years of common ancestry between the Second Island Chain islands and seeks to mutually benefit both partners in defense and security cooperation.
May 2, 2024 - In a historic ceremony at the Ngarachamayong Cultural Center in downtown Koror, Palau President Surangel Whipps, Jr., Guam Gov. Lou Leon Guerrero, and Col. Michael Cruz, adjutant general of the Guam Guard, signed a...

U.S. Marines, Okinawa citizens honor World War II casualties | Ie Shima Lighthouse Memorial Service 2024
Japanese coast guardsmen decorate the Ie Shima Lighthouse Memorial Monument for Martyrs in preparation for the annual Ie Shima Lighthouse Memorial Service on Ie Shima, Okinawa, Japan, April 21, 2024. The memorial service was held to commemorate the casualties of World War II, the Ie Shima lighthouse keeper, and his family.  (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Lance Cpl. Brody Robertson)
May 1, 2024 - U.S. Marines, Japanese coast guardsmen, and Okinawan officials honored the casualties of WWII during the annual Ie Shima Lighthouse Memorial Service on Ie Shima, Okinawa, Japan, April 21...