In Lebanon, Italian Blue Helmets conduct for the first time a joint exercise with the Lebanese Armed Forces in a Lebanese military base.

“Blue Hammer 2” constituted an opportunity for discussion and comparison for the Commanders of Lebanese Security Forces”

​Italian soldiers of Joint Task Force Lebanon (JTF-L) conducted, in the training hub of Chawakeer (Tyre), the joint exercise “Blue Hammer 2” with the Lebanese Armed Forces. The aim of the exercise was to increase the training standard and amalgamation of LAF units, to implement the cooperation with UNIFIL SW units and reach a correct modus operandi in finding training intended to a full implementation of UN Security Council Resolution 1701/2006.

The training center, inaugurated last February and renamed “Garibaldi” training area, belongs to 54th Tank Battalion, 5th Brigade; it was the location of an exercise designed, planned and conducted by LAF, in close coordination with UNIFIL Sector West (SW). For that purpose and home training, in the recent period, the area was divided in 5 training boxes, developed respectively for individual combat training, military sport circuit, military combat method (MCM), close quarter battle (CQB) and small arms fire training.

The exercise took place in presence of the highest military and civilian leaders of the area, among which the Commanders of LAF 5th and 7th Brigades, units located respectively in UNIFIL Sector West and East, of South Litani Sector (SLS) and LAF Intelligence, the Prefect, the Mayor and the Honorary Consul of Italy in Tyre.

“Blue Hammer 2”represented the synthesis of a joint hard training period, started last November, and designed mainly on the basis of courses of Study of Mission, Patrol Formation, Observation Post, Fighting In Built-Up Areas (FIBUA) and CQB. In this context, about 120 soldiers from LAF and instructors of ITALBATT, manoeuvre Task Force led by Italy, based on “Guide” Cavalry Regiment (19th), gave birth to the first exercise developed in a Lebanese base.

In particular, the activity was divided in 4 phases: individual combat training, self-defense methods and MCM; obstacle course overcoming; fighting in built-up areas with Explosive Detection Dog (EDD) and Medevac team and the use of Italian Army weapon simulation system; dynamic firing activity, with regular ammunition against shapes representing the enemy, during which the Lebanese Quick Reaction Force (QRF) and the ITALBATT Battalion Mobile Reserve ensured areal security and immediate support for the duration of the intervention.

“Blue Hammer 2” constituted also an opportunity for discussion and comparison for the Commanders of Lebanese Security Forces at all levels, which took the opportunity to meet with SW and ITALBATT Commanders at the end of the activity, in order to define future training and operations, designed to achieve full operational capability of the Lebanese Armed Forces deployed in Southern Lebanon.