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Minnesota National Guard
Minnesota Guard Cyber Specialists Among Best in Nation

Minnesota National Guard ST PAUL, Minn- In September, the Department of Defense, Defense Intelligence Agency designated the Joint Reserve Intelligence Center (JRIC) Minneapolis as the JRIC of the Year for 2012 The Minneapolis JRIC is a joint facility operated by the Navy of which the Minnesota National Guard is a key partner and it is one of 28 JRICs based throughout the DoD

Five years ago, the 34th Red Bull Infantry Division had trained signal intelligence Soldiers who did not have the opportunity to maintain their skills To rectify this, the then division commanding general Maj. Gen. Richard Nash and the Minnesota Adjutant General Maj. Gen. Larry Shellito took a concept originated by Lt. Col. Chris Tatarka and sought out a way to retain the skills of these Soldiers while also providing valuable real-world intelligence support to major theater commands

This cyber mission developed in 2008 as the 34th ID prepared to deploy to Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom "Over the course of our deployment we trained and utilized the best trained analysts in Iraq At that point we had skill sets and certifications that we did not want to lose," said Brig Gen Neal Loidolt, deputy commander, 34th Infantry Division "When United States Central Command asked if we could support their signal intelligence-based cyber mission we saw an opportunity to prove ourselves again"

One of the great benefits of the JRIC concept is intelligence reach back "A great example of this is that you can provide the same Intelligence support needed in the theater of conflict while being back in the US," said Maj Corby Koehler This is of particular importance as we draw down forces overseas without a decrease in mission capability "That is one of the big components of the award and the signal intelligence mission"

The Minnesota National Guard has Soldiers performing signal intelligence-based cyber operations overseas as well as stateside personnel supporting the overseas mission from Minnesota "Chief Warrant Officer 2 Mark Learned is currently working the same mission in Afghanistan with a different cryptology group," said 1st Lt Allyson Kalscheuer, a signal intelligence officer with the Minnesota National Guard "What we are doing here is not training We are performing a real-world mission supporting both the Central Command active duty mission"

The work of the JRIC "enables the National Guard to maintain relevance in real-life scenarios," said Capt Brian Morgan, 34th Infantry Division Special Security Officer "We are supporting real-world missions as Minnesota National Guard personnel As funding continues to shrink, the Minnesota National Guard has proven that we have the trained people to support missions overseas, and we can do it from home"

By supporting Central Command "we help identify bad guys and prevent them from entering overseas facilities," said Kalscheuer

A benefit of the Minnesota National Guard providing cyber support to higher military commands "is bringing a lot of attention to the Minnesota Guard as a premier organization where we have the trained, ready, highly sought-after personnel that can perform these kinds of missions," said Morgan "It is not your average Soldier that can execute these tasks It takes years of training and we are lucky that we have such a professional proficient force that can handle these requirements"

While the Minnesota Guard stands out amongst its intelligence arena peers they are always looking to fill available slots with new recruits "Hiring those young, technically competent, network savvy folks feeds into our cyber response initiative," added Koehler

"We are in a new era as a country," reflected Morgan "We are always looking for top-notch Soldiers with an exceptional level of patriotism and special technical knowledge to join the team" The Minnesota National Guard employs increasing numbers of military intelligence and signal occupational specialties for enlisted members, officers and warrant officers Further career information can be found at http://wwwnationalguardcom

Future plans for Minnesota National Guard cyber warriors includes adding a cyber platoon to the permanent force structure

November 7, 2013
by Master Sgt Daniel Ewer
Minnesota National Guard Public Affairs



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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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