More than 3,000 members of the Canadian Armed Forces are currently participating in the Canadian Army’s largest and most complex annual training exercise.
Approximately 3,200 personnel are participating in Exercise Maple Resolve 22 in Wainwright, Alberta. The exercise ensures soldiers are ready to deploy in support of Canadians in any capacity, including combat operations. It also improves their combat readiness.
Thousands of Canadian Armed Forces members take part in a massive training exercise
This year, soldiers go through the Date Europe scenario, which focuses on a deteriorating security situation in Eastern Europe. According to the CAF, it theoretically proposes a situation where the Baltic states are invaded from the east by a fictitious force and NATO is required to react.
“It’s basically drawn from the current conflict in Europe, of course,” said National Defense Minister Anita Anand, who was in Wainwright on Thursday to meet exercise participants. “But the reality is that our Canadian Armed Forces must be prepared for all eventualities.
“I feel like this is a highly organized and highly planned exercise. What I have seen today is remarkable in terms of the level of planning required for a very complex exercise such as this. »
Most of the soldiers participating in Exercise Maple Resolve 22 are from 2 Canadian Mechanized Brigade Group (2 CMBG) based in Petawawa, Ontario. It also includes soldiers from the United States and the United Kingdom.
Civilian actors also participate, helping the troops expose what could be very real situations.
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Colonel Eric Landry, commanding officer of 2 CMBG, said the large-scale exercise is part of the training they’ve been doing all year.
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“The scenario is basically: there was a ceasefire, we were on the border of a NATO country and there is an invasion that we have to react to,” Landry explained. “It’s very, very, very realistic.
“It makes it real for the troops. The troops are ready, they’re ready to go, they’re excited about what they’re doing, they love what they’re doing.
Chief of Defense Staff General Wayne Eyre said this type of training underpins their readiness to conduct operations around the world.
“They know it’s real, they know what they’re preparing for could happen,” Eyre said.
“This group here, over the summer, will become the core of our NATO response force.”
The Canadian Armed Forces’ largest military training exercise is underway in Wainwright
The Royal Canadian Air Force provides an air task force to support training operations. This includes six CH-146 Griffon helicopters and about 300 personnel. A CP-140 Aurora is also participating in the exercise, along with a detachment of five UH-60 Blackhawk helicopters from the Oregon National Guard.
This year, Exercise Maple Resolve is also part of a larger spring training program for 2 CMBG, which includes Exercise Intrepid Bear. Also held in Wainwright, this training exercise will also serve as live fire training.
The CAF said this year’s exercise is not a full return to the size it was before the COVID-19 pandemic, but is a significant increase from the training last year.
Wainwright is located approximately 200 kilometers southeast of Edmonton.
— with files from Breanna Karstens-Smith, Global News.
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