DVIDS – News – Royal Thai Army Makes Stryker History at Cobra Gold


LOPBURI PROVINCE, Kingdom of Thailand – The M1129 Stryker Mortar System is an infantry carrier vehicle, descended from the Swiss Mowag Piranha III, accommodating a 120mm mortar system that fires a suite of mortar ammunition and used for the first time in 2005. After 17 years, the United States Army is sharing this technology and weaponry with a close Indo-Pacific ally: the Kingdom of Thailand.

Here at Cobra Gold 2022, the annual international training exercise now in its 41st year, the 4th Battalion, 23rd Infantry Regiment, 2nd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 7th Infantry Division, is sharing the Stryker system with their partners from the 112th Infantry Regiment, Royal Thai Army, at Fort Bhumibol Lopburi Artillery Center on February 28, 2022.

“The Royal Thai Army has chosen to invest in the proven capability of the Stryker family of vehicles because of their proven combat effectiveness,” said Major Curt Belohlavek, battalion executive officer, 4th Battalion, 23rd Infantry Regiment. infantry. “The Stryker family of vehicles simultaneously provides a new capability within the RTA and enhances its interoperability with the U.S. military.”

The Kingdom of Thailand, which enjoys nearly two centuries of friendly and formalized diplomatic relations with the United States, is the first foreign country to receive these Stryker systems.

“This is a great opportunity for us to join forces with Thai forces,” said Lt. Col. Duke Reim, battalion commander of the 4/23rd Infantry Regiment. “But the most important thing is that we can create those relationships, those lasting relationships.”

This year’s Cobra Gold kicks off the process of introducing Strykers to the Royal Thai Army with a series of training exercises and field missions at Fort Bhumibol, preparing them to officially receive the vehicles at a later date.

“The RTA has not yet fielded the M1129 Stryker mortar transport vehicle,” Belohlavek said, “but there are plans to start receiving them in the near future. The commissioning of the 112th Stryker Regiment is the spearheading the ongoing development and modernization of the RTA by introducing new armored vehicles that significantly improve its combat capability and operational range.

The event also provided an opportunity for new members of the 112th Infantry Regiment to demonstrate their new skills and take the lead in ushering the Royal Thai Army into a new era of regional defence.

“The 112 Stryker Regiment team is a new unit that continues to receive new equipment and personnel,” Belohlavek said. “Given its importance as one of the model regiments to modernize the RTA, the 112th is one of the key organizations within the RTA. The soldiers and team leaders of the 112 Stryker Regiment have been sorted on the cusp to participate in the Cobra Gold and Hanuman Guardian exercises so they can bring their newfound knowledge and experiences to teach the rest of the regiment.

The 4/23rd and 112th practiced maintenance procedures, elevation preparation on mortar systems, dismount maneuvers, and live-fire drills on Strykers to hone their skills in a field environment.

“They’re ready for anything, whether it’s maintenance or tearing down the Stryker to ensure safety,” Pfc said. Charles Fairbairn, a Stryker leader with the 4/23rd. “You know, really get moving and get things done.”

Designed to demonstrate U.S. commitment to Thailand, the field training portion of CG 22 encourages U.S. and Thai soldiers to learn from each other, build trust, and strengthen their bond that has developed over the years.

“They were very receptive to everything we taught them,” Fairbairn said. “Really committed and I feel like it worked really well.”

“The entry into service of this vehicle is strategically important as it further strengthens the military alliance between the United States and Thailand,” Belohlavek said, “and signals to neighboring countries that Thailand is committed to an Indo-Pacific region. free and open.

Date taken: 28.02.2022
Date posted: 03.05.2022 09:23
Story ID: 415843
Location: LOP BURI, TH

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