The Joint Warfighting Assessment has taken place in Grafenwohr, Germany, with the UK’s 1 Armoured Infantry Brigade exercising within the US 1st Infantry Division as part of a multinational exercise, which also sees the British Army work alongside German, French, and Canadian forces. Danish troops were also taking part and they provided a Battle Group working within the British brigade. The UK collaborates extensively with the US in concept development and experimentation. The designation of 1 Armoured Infantry Brigade as the experimentation brigade serves to reinforce this relationship and commitment.
This is a hugely efficient exercise because it brings five countries together Brig Zac Stenning OBE
All of the countries taking part were NATO allies and this demonstrates that the UK stands by its collective defence agreement with NATO and its ambition to work more closely with our international partners to provide flexibility and capability when and where it needs it most. It also provides opportunity for all members of the Army to meet every challenge by training in all environments with all partner nations with the same strong bond and shared values.
Maintaining security is no longer purely a national matter and events over recent years have shown that threats take no account of national boundaries but are interconnected and interrelated. Exercises such as Joint Warfighting Assessment 18 sees staff from many nations working together to practise command and control of an operation within a fictional scenario. As a forward-looking and technologically advanced Army, it helps us to be ready for the challenges of the future, both at home and overseas.
Brigadier Zac Stenning OBE, Commander of 1 Armoured Infantry Brigade, said: “This is a hugely efficient exercise because it brings five countries together and really starts to determine what are the human, procedural and technical issues that we can overcome. Having so much collective wisdom, thought and technical capacity means that we’re achieving wins far quicker.”
He continued: “What this means is not being insular, not just relying on our own technology but looking globally, understanding who we can fight alongside and whose technology we wish to be compatible with to continue to deter and if necessary defeat those threats to UK security.”
Elaborating further on brigades plans, he added: “We were given the task around a year ago to redefine the way the British Army fights in the future. That has enabled all of us in the Brigade to think differently and to try and understand how we are going to harness AJAX (a new armoured fighting vehicle), MIV (the Mechanised Infantry Vehicle) and the new communications systems MORPHEUS to deliver us a more decisive future Strike Brigade effect.”
The 1st US Infantry Division is a combined arms division of the United States Army. It has seen continuous service since its formation in 1917 and is nicknamed "The Fighting First.” The division is currently based at Fort Riley, Kansas. 1 UK Armoured Infantry Brigade has a distinguished history of service, and is based in Tidworth, Wiltshire.