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Sunday, November 26, 2023

US and Saudi Arabia CENTCOM Joined Defense Exercises

HLS.Today US and Saudi Arabia CENTCOM Joined Defense Exercises

HLS.Today – The United States and Saudi Arabia have had a longstanding military relationship dating back to the 1940s. This relationship has only strengthened over time, with the two nations entering into various training agreements under the United States Central Command (CENTCOM) to enhance the capabilities of their armed forces.

CENTCOM

The CENTCOM is one of the nine unified combatant commands of the United States Department of Defense (DoD). It is responsible for the security of the Middle East, Central Asia, and parts of South Asia. Its area of responsibility includes countries like Afghanistan, Iraq, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, and Saudi Arabia. As such, it is not surprising that the United States and Saudi Arabia have entered into several training agreements under CENTCOM.

The purpose of these training agreements is to build stronger military-to-military relationships between the United States and Saudi Arabia. These agreements help in enhancing the skills of the Saudi Arabian armed forces and equip them with the latest technology and tactics. The training agreements also allow the United States to maintain a strong presence in the Middle East, which is essential for protecting American interests in the region.

Military Training Mission (MTM)

One of the most significant training agreements between the United States and Saudi Arabia is the Military Training Mission (MTM). The MTM was established in 1953 to provide military training to the Saudi Arabian armed forces. The MTM has played a vital role in the development of the Saudi Arabian military, and its success is evident in the Gulf War of 1990-1991, where Saudi Arabia played a significant role in the coalition forces that liberated Kuwait from Iraqi occupation.

Under the MTM, Saudi Arabian military personnel receive training in various areas such as logistics, maintenance, intelligence, and counterterrorism. The MTM also provides English language training to Saudi Arabian military personnel, which is essential for communication with their American counterparts. The MTM has helped to build a strong relationship between the United States and Saudi Arabia, with many Saudi Arabian military personnel studying in American military schools and universities.

Joint Combined Exchange Training (JCET)

Another essential training agreement between the United States and Saudi Arabia is the Joint Combined Exchange Training (JCET). JCET is a training program designed to enhance the skills of the special forces of both countries. Under JCET, US and Saudi Arabian special forces conduct joint exercises and training programs to improve their abilities in counterterrorism, hostage rescue, and urban warfare.

The JCET program has been in place since 1981 and has played a crucial role in the development of the Saudi Arabian special forces. The JCET program also helps to build trust between the United States and Saudi Arabia and promotes cooperation between the two countries in the fight against terrorism.

The United States and Saudi Arabia have also conducted joint military exercises under CENTCOM. These exercises provide an opportunity for the armed forces of both countries to train together and learn from each other. The exercises also help to demonstrate the military capabilities of both countries and their commitment to the security of the region.

Eagle Resolve

One such joint exercise is the “Eagle Resolve” exercise. The Eagle Resolve exercise is an annual joint military exercise conducted between the United States and Saudi Arabia since 1999. The exercise aims to enhance the capabilities of both countries in counterterrorism, crisis management, and interoperability. The exercise involves a range of scenarios, including live-fire exercises, medical training, and intelligence gathering.

Another joint exercise is the “North Thunder” exercise, which was conducted in 2016. The North Thunder exercise involved military personnel from 20 countries, including the United States and Saudi Arabia. The exercise aimed to demonstrate the military capabilities of the participating countries and their readiness to respond to any threat in the region. The exercise involved a range of scenarios, including a mock invasion of a city and a live-fire exercise.

Bright Star

In addition to these joint exercises, the United States and Saudi Arabia have also conducted other joint exercises under CENTCOM, including the “Red Flag” exercise and the “Bright Star” exercise. The Red Flag exercise is a biannual training exercise that is conducted in the United States. The exercise involves various air forces from around the world, including Saudi Arabia. The exercise provides an opportunity for air forces to train together in a realistic combat environment.

The Bright Star exercise is a biennial military exercise that is conducted in Egypt. The exercise involves various countries, including the United States and Saudi Arabia. The exercise aims to enhance the interoperability and readiness of the participating countries in responding to regional security threats.

The training agreements and joint exercises between the United States and Saudi Arabia have been successful in building a strong relationship between the two countries. The training agreements have helped to enhance the skills of the Saudi Arabian armed forces and equip them with the latest technology and tactics. The joint exercises have provided an opportunity for the armed forces of both countries to train together and learn from each other.

However, the United States’ relationship with Saudi Arabia has been controversial due to Saudi Arabia’s human rights record, particularly in its treatment of women and its involvement in the Yemeni Civil War. The United States has faced criticism for its support of Saudi Arabia, with some arguing that it should not continue to support a regime with such a poor human rights record.

In conclusion, the United States and Saudi Arabia have a longstanding military relationship that has been strengthened through various training agreements under CENTCOM. These agreements have helped to enhance the skills of the Saudi Arabian armed forces and equip them with the latest technology and tactics. The joint exercises have provided an opportunity for the armed forces of both countries to train together and learn from each other. While this relationship has faced criticism due to Saudi Arabia’s human rights record, it remains an important partnership for both countries in maintaining regional security.

IMCMEX

In addition to these joint exercises, the United States and Saudi Arabia have also conducted joint naval exercises. One such exercise is the International Mine Countermeasures Exercise (IMCMEX), which is a biennial exercise conducted by the United States and its allies in the Gulf region. The exercise aims to improve the ability of participating countries to respond to threats from naval mines. Saudi Arabia has participated in several IMCMEX exercises, which have helped to improve its mine countermeasures capabilities.

United States Air Force (USAF)

The United States and Saudi Arabia have also conducted joint air exercises, including the Red Flag exercise. Red Flag is a biennial air-to-air combat training exercise conducted by the United States Air Force (USAF) at Nellis Air Force Base in Nevada. Saudi Arabia has participated in several Red Flag exercises, which have helped to improve its air combat capabilities and interoperability with the USAF.

In recent years, the United States and Saudi Arabia have focused on strengthening their cybersecurity capabilities. In 2019, the two countries conducted a joint cybersecurity exercise, which aimed to improve the ability of both countries to respond to cyber threats. The exercise involved simulated cyber attacks on critical infrastructure and aimed to test the preparedness of both countries to respond to such attacks.

The training agreements between the United States and Saudi Arabia have not been without controversy. The Saudi Arabian military has been accused of human rights abuses, including the killing of civilians in Yemen, where it has been involved in a civil war since 2015. The United States has been criticized for providing military aid to Saudi Arabia, which has been used in the conflict. However, the United States has defended its relationship with Saudi Arabia, arguing that it is essential for regional stability and for protecting American interests in the Middle East.

C-UAS counter-unmanned aerial systems

CENTCOM has also conducted joint exercises with its partners in the region in the area of counter-unmanned aerial systems (C-UAS). These exercises aim to improve the ability of participating countries to detect, track, and neutralize unmanned aerial systems (UAS) that pose a threat to security and stability in the region. Saudi Arabia has participated in several C-UAS exercises, including the Falcon Sentry exercise, which was conducted in 2018. This exercise involved the use of advanced UAS detection and neutralization technology, and aimed to enhance the interoperability between the Saudi Arabian armed forces and their counterparts in the United States. The United States and its partners in the region continue to conduct joint exercises to improve their C-UAS capabilities, and to address the growing threat posed by UAS to regional security.

Takeaways

In conclusion, the United States and Saudi Arabia have a long-standing military relationship, which has been strengthened through various training agreements under CENTCOM. These training agreements have helped to enhance the capabilities of the Saudi Arabian armed forces and equip them with the latest technology and tactics. The training agreements have also allowed the United States to maintain a strong presence in the Middle East, which is essential for protecting American interests in the region. Joint exercises, including the Eagle Resolve exercise and the International Mine Countermeasures Exercise, have played a crucial role in building trust between the United States and Saudi Arabia and promoting cooperation between the two countries in the fight against terrorism. While the training agreements have been controversial, with concerns raised over human rights abuses, the United States has defended its relationship with Saudi Arabia, arguing that it is essential for regional stability.

HLS.Today Source: CENTCOM.MIL

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