Green Sands, the inaugural U.S. Army Central training from 13-14 July at Camp Buehring, Kuwait, is designed to incorporate counter-unmanned aerial systems, or counter-UAS, into base defense operations. The training consists of both command post exercises in a Base Defense Operations Center, or BDOC, and a counter-UAS live fire.
“The purpose of the Base Defense Operations Center and Counter UAS training ultimately comes down to force protection,” said Col. Damon Sheffield, USARCENT’s Chief of Protection, G36. “Protection of our base, our camps, and our personnel. And it also establishes a baseline of training for our soldiers as they come into theater and integration of our counter UAS systems.”
The training incorporates the latest in ground-based counter-UAS capabilities including mission command systems and the mobile-low, slow, unmanned aircraft integrated defense system, or M-LIDS. The M-LIDS is a wheeled vehicle designed to destroy the types of threats the students may encounter.
“This morning, we trained with the M-LIDS which is a maneuverable capability,” said Capt. Basil Wang, an operator at the Green Sands training. “We also discussed the coyote missile system which is one of the primary systems to engage (UAS) across the theater.”
USARCENT plans to perpetually facilitate this training for units transitioning into the U.S. Central Command region. Sheffield said this training is designed to address an identified gap in counter-UAS training.
“The inspiration behind Green Sands is that CENTCOM Headquarters identified a gap,” said Sheffield. “Within that gap, we did not have a standardized baseline training course where we could integrate counter-UAS into a BDOC training platform.”
In recent years, the threat posed by UAS increased as malign regional actors continue to use and experiment with this relatively cheap weapons system. Due to its low cost to entry, it is becoming the weapon of choice for potential adversaries resulting in rapid technology proliferation and increased employment.
“The UAS threat is a shared security challenge for the U.S. and our regional partners,” said Lt. Gen. Patrick Frank, U.S. Army Central commanding general. “Green Sands provides dynamic training to Soldiers who are confronted with this threat. The multiple repetitions of demanding scenarios, to include a live fire exercise, are the foundation for force protection throughout the CENTCOM AOR.”