NEWS | March 25, 2019

Training, Tracers, and Transition – California Guardsmen train with Jordan Armed Forces

By Sgt. 1st Class Brian Barbour Area Support Group - Jordan

Ten weeks of joint training with a California National Guard come to a close for a battalion of Jordanian soldiers, as they graduate from the Jordan Operational Engagement Program.

The California National Guard's 1st Squadron, 18th Cavalry Regiment and the Jordan Armed Forces 10th Border Guard Force Battalion marked its completion of the training program with a graduation ceremony held at the Peace Operations Training Center near Amman, March 14, 2019.

The Jordan Operational Engagement Program is the most extensive training program funded by the U.S. Department of Defense. The program focuses on border security, partnership building, and enhancing the JAF’s capability to defend Jordan’s borders against ISIS and other violent extremist threats.

“Throughout your ten weeks, you’ve improved your skills as individuals and built upon these skills to improve your capabilities from squad training through the company level,” Lt. Col. Jeremy T. Hopkins, commander of 1st Squadron, 18th Cavalry Regiment said. “You’ve trained when it was nice outside and went through the elements when it was cold and wet. Throughout it all, you displayed a high degree of motivation and willingness to learn.”

Soldiers from the 1-18 CAV worked side-by-side with the 10th BGF during the program, training on individual, squad and platoon level skills, chemical, biological, radioactive and nuclear operations, area and base defense operations, day and nighttime rifle and machine gun qualification, and live-fire exercises.

The 10th BGF also received focused training on specialty teams like medics, snipers, forward observers, indirect fire infantrymen, and machine gun teams. Several weeks of training built up to the culminating event, which was a company live-fire exercise.

JAF Brig. Gen. Khalid Mohammed Al-Masaeid, commander of the Northern Region, spoke highly about the graduates.

“The 10th Border Guard is one of the strongest and greatest battalions I have with all its officers and NCOs,” said Al-Masaeid through an interpreter. "

He expressed gratitude to U.S. Military instructors, thanking them for training with the Border Guard Forces and emphasized to his soldiers the importance the 10th BGF’s mission in Jordan.

“The security you provide is for your family – your wife, children, father, and mother so that they can continue a normal life,” said A-Masaeid.

“Hand in hand with our allies, we will be able to fight terrorism, keeping our country protected and safe.”