128 ARW Security Forces Train as They Fight

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Ryan Kuntze
  • 128th Air Refueling Wing
 Five calm Airmen huddled together in the spring morning air.

Weapons in hand, the Airmen discussed their objective: to recon various points on the perimeter of Gen. Mitchell International Airport.

Their plan made, the five Airmen moved with caution and experience. They were expecting resistance during their mission.

Such was the training atmosphere at the 128th Air Refueling Wing as security forces team members conducted their annual training on Saturday, May 1, 2010.

The training gave security forces team members the opportunity to refresh their valuable combat skills, which could be used at home station or during a deployment, a security forces representative said.

Most of the training events incorporated techniques and information that apply to off-base missions in non-urban environments, but the training situations did enhance teamwork and the ability to work as a cohesive unit in any situation, the representative said.

The training was conducted with the use of the Multiple Integrated Laser Engagement System, or MILES gear. These devices allow for the use of simulated ammunition, and they can identify an Airman as a target or victim of an enemy shooter by emitting a high-pitched noise.

Training scenarios utilized proper compass use, land navigation techniques, reactive fire to near-ambush situations, and combat life saver skills, the representative said.

"In addition to the [deploying] teams, we think it's important to keep all teams up on their training," said Master Sgt. Mark Warner, the 128 security forces training manager.
Warner said the training environment used by the 128 ARW security forces squadron is identical to down-range training and techniques.

"We learned this from the Army, and this is the way we do things," Warner said.

In addition to conducting field training, security forces team members performed their weapons qualifications, said Master Sgt. Matthew Knight, a 128 ARW security forces combat arms training and maintenance instructor.

Team members qualified with the M-4 assault rifle and the M-9 sidearm using simulated-distance targets at the on-base range, Knight said. Other weapons the team members train with include the M-203 grenade launcher, the M-249 squad automatic weapon and the M-240B crew-serve weapon, he said.

Security forces weapons qualifications differ from main-base Airmen's qualifications by introducing shooting-in-movement scenarios and by allowing the team members to operate their weapons ambidextrously, Knight  said.

Weapons training is conducted annually or as needed for deployment purposes, Knight said.

The day's field training concluded with the successful completion of the reconnaissance mission.

By being proactive in their defensive efforts and utilizing their collective experience, the security forces team members were able to mitigate the loss of life, subdue their enemies and end the day with the knowledge that they are prepared to perform their duties in any global environment.