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Minnesota National Guard
Camp Ripley expects no additional state funds this session

by Howard Lestrud ECM Publishers Political Editor

It appears there will be no requests for additional state funding for Camp Ripley during the 2013 session of the Minnesota Legislature, says Col Scott St Sauver, commander of the 53,000-acre regional training facility for military, federal, state, local and civilian communities Camp Ripley is located six miles west of Little Falls

Bonding totaling $195 million was approved last year by the Legislature to build a new education complex

Col St Sauver calls himself the mayor of this large facility which spans 18 miles in length and 5 1/2 miles in width He praises the facility�s upgraded training components and says in training simulation, Camp Ripley�s only limitation is imagination Camp Ripley is called one of the largest National Guard training sites within the United States

Camp Ripley is most known for being a training facility for military units including the Minnesota National Guard It has also served as a training host for troops from Norway and Croatia and from Illinois, Iowa, South Dakota, Wyoming, North Dakota and Georgia

Commander St Sauver led a tour of ECM Publishers Editorial Board members recently, showing board members the camp�s upgraded training facilities

Most recently, a new 43-mile Emergency Vehicle Operations Course (EVOC) was opened at Camp Ripley and it includes a four-lane divided highway, gravel roadways, a 300-foot by 700-foot skill pad with the ability to create icy or wet surfaces, a freeway-type lighting system and 6 miles of winding road through a wooded area

Col St Sauver said the new emergency vehicle course reminds him of the Talladega Raceway in Talladega, Alabama

The emergency vehicle course allows trainers to set up training scenarios, including vehicle crashes, hazardous material spills, and pursuits

The track will be operated by the Minnesota State Patrol and provides a realistic and safe environment to train law enforcement and emergency personnel

The ECM Editorial Board first met in the Marty J Skoglund Environmental Classroom at the camp The room features over 130 birds, 55 mammals, numerous fish and reptiles as well as amphibians mounted for display Environmentalist John Miley spoke about the biodiversity advantages possessed by Camp Ripley

Miley says Camp Ripley not only has military resources available for training but also has �resources that surround us� resulting in the camp being one of the most biologically rich places in the State of Minnesota

Training of the military at Camp Ripley has changed considerably over the years Currently, soldiers are being trained for a new kind of war, which includes counter insurgency and domestic terrorism Camp Ripley contains four tactical training bases on camp Simulated IED exercises are conducted at these locations The camp also has three drop zones, a 6,100-foot runway and 3,500 feet of tactical runway

National Guard soldiers are also being deployed for disasters such as tornadoes and Hurricane Sandy

Col St Sauver says Camp Ripley trains soldiers and works closely and partners with community agencies to provide protection for everyone St Sauver says military officials are currently watching developments in Israel





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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."



Minnesota-based aviation unit takes part in Warfighter Exercise

Posted: 2018-06-08  11:59 AM
34ECAB WFX CAMP ATTERBURY, Ind. - More than 150 Soldiers of the Minnesota National Guard's 34th Expeditionary Combat Aviation Brigade are here participating in a multi-echelon training event, Warfighter Exercise 18-5, May 30 to June 15.

The exercise, which is part live and part virtual, is testing the St. Paul, Minnesota-based aviation unit's ability to conduct operations and mission command in a high-intensity, complex operating environment. Soldiers are being challenged to take decisive action as they focus on air-ground operations -- or synchronizing and integrating aviation operations into the scheme of maneuver planned and conducted by forces on the ground.

In this case, the units on the ground are being commanded by the Rosemount, Minnesota-based 34th Red Bull Infantry Division, which is also participating in the exercise.



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