Allied Spirit was a multinational exercise involving approximately 4,100
participants from 10 nations at 7th Army Training Command’s Hohenfels
Training Area. The U.S. Army Europe-directed multinational exercise
series Allied Spirit is designed to develop and enhance NATO and key
partner’s interoperability and readiness.
The Texas Army National Guardsmen from 19th SFG(A) augmented the OCT
team from U.S. Special Operations Command Europe and the JMRC Special
Operations Forces Cell. OCTs acted as on-the-ground trainers supporting
SOF and conventional forces during training exercise Allied Spirit VIII
conducted January 15 through February 5.
The 19th SFG(A) team mentored a diverse group including U.S. SOF
assigned to 1st SFG(A), Albanian SOF, and the Lithuanian National
Defence Force Volunteers (KASP).
“Being an OCT assisting in unit tactical development, bridging the units
together and integrating them into action was a great experience,” said
a 19th SFG(A) team sergeant. “Everyone gained from completing the
The Texas-based Green Berets were particularly impressed by the performance of their Lithuanian Allies.
“Lithuania’s KASP trained smart, were decisive and their tactics were sound,” said the team sergeant.
The opportunity to observe and train other U.S. Special Forces Soldiers
provided a training opportunity for the 19th SFG(A) OCTs, challenging
them to remain experts in their doctrine.
“We drew upon their knowledge of Unconventional Warfare from the Special
Forces Qualification Course and combined it with the training and
deployment experience to provide training feedback to [the ODA from 1st
SFG(A)],” said the 19th SFG(A) officer in charge of operations.
TXARNG OCTs reinforced the concept of “free play” during Allied Spirit
VIII to the greatest extent possible to meet the rotational training
unit’s training objectives.
“This experience was worthwhile as a guest OCT because you get to
evaluate another unit's tactical training and standard operations and
witness what works for them,” said the operations OIC. “As a Special
Forces Soldier, observing a [team] from another group gives you the
perspective they have from their area of responsibility and strengthens
your unit\s repertoire."