Kentucky Army National Guard brings the firepower to Saber Strike 18

By Spc. Alan Prince | June 6, 2018

BEMOWO PISKIE, Poland — "This is a unique opportunity for the unit since this is the first time we have deployed with 100% of our organic elements," stated Capt. Paul Chandler, Alpha Battery commander. 

The HIMARS is a rocket system mounted on the back of a truck that provides a unique combination of lethal indirect fire with high maneuverability. 

The lack of heavy armor plating allows the vehicle to quickly move into a firing position, fire its rockets, and then quickly move back into a concealed position away from enemy fire. 

Using different firing systems, the HIMARS can reach varying distances.

The Guided Multiple Launch Rocket System allows the HIMARS to carry six rocket pods reaching distances between 30-100 kilometers.

Vehicles may also be equipped with the Advanced Tactical Missile System which is a single rocket pod that can reach distances up to 300 kilometers.

Saber Strike 18 is the eighth iteration of the long-standing U.S. Army Europe-led cooperative training exercise designed to enhance interoperability among allies and regional partners. 

"Saber Strike gives our unit the ability to sharpen our skills and work with our allies," added Chandler. 

This year's exercise, scheduled to take place from June 3-15, will focus on improving land and air operational capabilities with an additional key objective to train with NATO's enhanced Forward Presence (eFP) battlegroups.