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Nov 18 2021

Multinational Troops Boot up Exercise Steadfast Leda 2021

SENNELAGER, Germany – More than 950 multinational service members mobilized throughout Europe during Exercise STEADFAST LEDA 2021, a NATO sponsored command post and computer assisted exercise, to increase interoperability and operational effectiveness in the alliance.

STLE 21, led by Headquarters Allied Rapid Reaction Corps, based in Gloucester, United Kingdom, was planned more than 12 months ago and aims to train three army corps in planning and conducting joint operations in a simulated scenario against a similar adversary across many areas of warfare. The primary training audiences are NATO Rapid Deployable Corps Spain (NRDC-ESP), in the corps warfighting role; NRDC-Greece in the multi-corps land component command role; and the ARRC, as it transitions from its role as NATO's corps warfighting headquarters at readiness. 

While the exercise officially started in mid-November, the mobilization of troops and equipment started six weeks earlier by signal and communication specialists from HQ's Communication Branch and 1st (UK) Signal Brigade. The task was to project, protect and sustain the headquarters' command post and establish the communication information system during the setup and validation phase of the exercise. _nato4

It affects branches and units in theatre to test their communication systems after they have been installed... 
"All deployed headquarters in Spain, Greece, Poland and Germany are trying to federate into the network and communicate in all functional areas and services", said German Army Lieutenant Colonel Jurgen Butz, a communications planner with the ARRC. All the information feeds in to the NATO common operating picture, where the required information is available to commanders to plan and make decisions alongside their multinational allies.   
Butz said the CIS capabilities were in an advanced state thanks to the 22nd Signal Regiment and the Gurkha ARRC Support Battalion soldiers, from 1st (UK) Signal Brigade, "who did a great job," especially considering the pandemic constraints in place. 
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"COVID has become part of the operating environment, as with so many other things," said British Army Lieutenant Colonel Ian Sands, the Gurkha ARRC Support Battalion Commanding Officer.  "Keeping the soldiers safe is right at the forefront of our minds in all respect".

Soldiers transported approximately 120 shipping containers and heavy equipment through busy roads and lengthy convoy moves, and worked within different host nations' guidelines, which proved the ARRC's ability to move troops and equipment in support of NATO's resolve to promote stability and increase security in the North-Atlantic region. 

"We are only as successful as we are... because we have outstanding, multitalented soldiers." Sands added. "The only way we can really properly train ourselves is through doing exercises like this."

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Story by Allied Rapid Reaction Corps Public Affairs Office

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