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Minnesota National Guard
Training leads to increased flights over Panama City

PANAMA CITY — That low roar heard over Panama City the past two nights, or the increased air traffic, could be part of larger combined maneuvers being held at Tyndall Air Force Base

The Air Force confirmed Tuesday an increase in activity with the addition of a US Coast Guard group from Minnesota for training

The 148th Fighter Wing out of Duluth, Minn, is spending two weeks at Tyndall working with the 53rd Weapons Evaluation Group (WEG) to better prepare them for combat

Tyndall officials also acknowledged there was night training at the base

“We came here to shoot missiles and drop live ordnance to be better prepared for our air sovereignty alert mission,” said the 148th Fighter Wing’s Lt. Col. Reed Bowman “We also came to the WEG to validate our new weapons system”

The 148th Fighter Wing supports the Continental US North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) region in carrying out Operation Noble Eagle — the command’s response to the terrorist attacks on Sept 11, 2001 The fighter wing is currently in the process of replacing its Block 25 F-16s with more advanced Block 50 F-16s that have different engines and internal avionics

The 53rd WEG, a detachment of the 53rd Wing at Eglin Air Force Base, provides the Duluth pilots an opportunity that doesn’t come around too often

“The last time we were here and had the opportunity to shoot live missiles was 2000,” Bowman said

During their two-week stay, the 148th Fighter Wing will run scenarios and missions created by the WEG, which evaluates the fighter wing on their tactics, techniques and procedures from the ground up

According to the US Coast Guard, evaluations of machinery and personnel will be made during the trip
“The training we receive here gives us confidence in our jets’ ability to perform,” Bowman said “When we shoot the live ordnance, we know our weapons system performs as advertised Without the live ordnance, it’s like a placebo effect”

That’s an important advantage in a wing where nearly half of the pilots have never had the chance to fly a real-world alert mission

While this deployment is an important step in the conversion to the new Block 50 F-16s, it’s not the first training the pilots and maintainers have completed since they received their first new jets in April 2010

“The internal architecture of the Block 50 is completely different from the Block 25,” Col Bowman said “It’s a significantly different mission and skill set”

February 01, 2011 06:12:00 PM

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Minnesota State Fair Military Appreciation Day to recognize women veterans

Posted: 2018-08-27  12:34 PM
Minnesota National Guard FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 27, 2018

ST. PAUL, Minn.- The Minnesota State Fair's eighth annual Military Appreciation Day will take place Tuesday, August 28, and provide an educational opportunity for all fairgoers to learn about Minnesota's military community. This year's theme is honoring Minnesota's women veterans.

"The Minnesota State Fair is a great opportunity to bring our community together to show appreciation for the service and sacrifice of our state's veterans," said Maj. Gen. Jon Jensen, The Adjutant General of the Minnesota National Guard. "This year, I am proud to stand with women veterans as we highlight their stories and contributions to our armed forces."

Minnesota Guardsmen learn survival skills, train with Norwegian counterparts

Posted: 2018-07-03  01:36 PM
NOREX 45 Over the course of 10 days, 100 Soldiers and Airmen from the Minnesota National Guard who traveled to Norway June 17-26, 2018, for the 45th Norwegian Reciprocal Troop Exchange learned valuable survival skills and shared their knowledge with members of the Norwegian Home Guard. This year's exchange was the second to take place during the summer months in the history of the longest-running military partnership between two nations.

"It was a great experience for both the Minnesota National Guard and the Norwegian Home Guard," said Capt. 'Kiwi' HorgA�ien, the senior Norwegian instructor. "A cultural exchange, a social exchange and military exchange all packed into one."

The 45th exchange got off to a late start, with flight delays causing the trip to be shortened from its normal length of two weeks. The delay meant that the Minnesota Guardsmen jumped right into training, heading out to the field after just a few hours of sleep.

133rd Airlift Wing Emphasizes Combat Readiness Training

Posted: 2018-06-29  10:48 AM
Alpena ALPENA, Michigan - Approximately 300 U.S. Air Force Airmen from the 133rd Airlift Wing participated in a readiness exercise at the Alpena Combat Readiness Training Center, Alpena, Mich.

The exercise, tagged as Iron Ore, was designed test the Airmen abilities to set up operations at an unfamiliar location and receive in depth training on Ability-To-Survive and Operate (ATSO) principles while supporting airlift and aeromedical flight operations.

To ensure mission success and readiness, Airmen had to complete training at home station prior to leaving for Alpena. Some of this training included weapons qualification, gas mask fit testing, Mission Oriented Protective Posture (MOPP) familiarization, self-aid and buddy care and career field training.

Red Bulls Kickoff Division Warfighter

Posted: 2018-06-13  01:38 PM
DIV WFX CAMP ATTERBURY, Ind. - "A Warfighter is an exercise that allows the Division to evaluate their ability to maneuver assets in a battle," said Master Sgt. Greg Weaver, the Operations Non-Commissioned Officer in Charge for the Division Headquarters and Headquarters Battalion. "It is designed to focus on particular areas and specific objectives to be evaluated or tested."

The Division has geared its' planning and training efforts in preparation for Warfighter since July 2017. Coordinating transportation for Soldiers and equipment was often on the mind of Maj. David Johansson, the logistics officer for the 34th ID. With the coordination of Johansson and his team, troops and equipment all converged on Camp Atterbury, enlisting the help of 89 railcars, 280 tractor-trailers, and nearly 50 buses for the movement.

"I like to say my job is to 'quiet the noise'". Johansson continued, "The noise being a real life logistical problem that could impede the exercise."

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