The exercise called Brave Warrior 2022 ended today, after two intense weeks of training activities.
The military contingents of 5 NATO countries have deployed a total of over 1,200 men and women and 300 combat vehicles. These include the Italian Contingent, composed of 260 belonging to the Alpine Troops of the Army, in particular to the Alpine Brigade “Taurinense”, framed in the enhanced Vigilance Activity mission of NATO.
Today the main phase of the exercise took place. Numerous military leaders of NATO countries were present, including the Operational Commander of the Joint Forces Summit, General of the Army Corps Francesco Paolo Figliuolo and the Commander of the NATO Joint Force Command of Brunssum, General of the Army Corps Guglielmo Luigi Miglietta.
In his greeting to the Italian military, General Figliuolo highlighted the importance of the military presence in Hungarian territory. “We are here, together with our allies, because we are an integral part of a strengthened defense on NATO’s eastern flank, decided following the recent Madrid summit and which today sees over 40,000 men and women under the direct control of the Atlantic Alliance, with a device that counts over 300,000 units. We are part of a military presence that sees NATO troops deployed not only in Hungary, but also in Slovakia, Bulgaria and Romania. To this presence, we add the already existing battlegroups in Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland, where the Italian Air Task Force “White Eagle” operates. Then we think of the maritime surveillance activities, which see the entire Italian fleet employed with shading and surveillance activities on Russian submarines.”
Then, recalling that next October 15 will be celebrated the 150th anniversary of the establishment of the Alpine Corps, he added: “Let me say that it is a personal pride to see you Alpini of the Taurinense Brigade engaged in this collective effort, a unit that I had the privilege of leading between 2010 and 2011. It is no coincidence that in a particular mission like this a unit of the Alpine Troops of the Army was chosen, as proof of the versatility and resilience of a Corps that has written glorious pages of national and military history, with a use that goes from the desert to the mountain and Arctic territories, to which we are most voted, to the Hungarian plain. Moreover, you are bearers of what are the same values as NATO, values that exalt cohesion and solidarity and that make you a bulwark in defense of democracy and freedom.”
Over the last two weeks, the Taurinense Alpini have conducted numerous training activities, side by side with the Allied units present in the area of operations. Over the past three days, defensive tactical and offensive fire activities have been conducted that have affected the entire Battlegroup and during which the ability to slow down, block and respond with a counterattack to an enemy action has been exercised.
Employed in the “Brave Warrior” all the Italian components that are part of the Battlegroup, from the rifle platoons that move on board the VTLM “Lince” and the BV206 (tactical vehicle with high mobility typical of the Alpine Troops), up to the heavy cavalry units on “Centauro” Armor. The counter-tank teams equipped with the long-range “Spike” missile system, together with 120mm “Thomson” heavy mortar platoons and the chosen shooter cores, instead supported the friendly maneuver in all phases of the exercise. To ensure the combat support function, the mountain artillery has deployed FH70 howitzers, while the units of the Alpine Engineers the VTMM (medium multi-role tactical vehicle) in Route Clearance trim. Finally, there was the intervention of the JTAC (Joint Terminal Attack Controller) team responsible for the management of air fire.
Another fundamental capacity expressed by the Italian Contingent was that of logistical support, which guaranteed, during all phases of the exercise, day and night, the refueling of fuel, food and ammunition to the deployed troops, the recovery of allied vehicles made inefficient and the evictions of any injured personnel. All this in full adherence to the principle of interoperability between the units of different countries that are part of the Battlegroup.
Achieving full operational capability is only the starting point for the NATO Battlegroup deployed in Hungary. The training and operational activities will continue over the next few months, allowing to increase more and more the combat capacity of all components. The conclusion of the “Brave Warrior” marks the achievement of full operational capability by the eVA Battlegroup, which from today passes under the direct command of NATO, with the mission of ensuring deterrence and defense on the south-east flank of the Atlantic Alliance.