Howitzer Live Fire Exercise in Kuwait
With the drawdown of U.S. forces in Iraq complete, soldiers from throughout the Army are getting the opportunity to participate in training that is difficult to conduct back in the states. In northern Kuwait, the Minnesota National Guard's 1st Brigade Combat Team, 1st Battalion, 125th Field Artillery, 34th Infantry Division took advantage of this unique situation. Soldiers participated in crew qualification on the M109A6 Paladin, a self-propelled, tracked artillery vehicle with a 155-millimeter cannon that is capable of launching artillery shells upwards of ten miles through the guidance of an on board computer system. The unit trains at Camp Ripley, Minn., during their weekend drills, but the resources to conduct training of this magnitude are scarce.