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Army Aims to Boost Soldiers' Combat Skills

two men do pushups while being watched by a uniformed army official during a physical fitness test
(Brett Flashnick/AP)

By    |   Thursday, 17 January 2019 04:24 PM

The Army wants to boost soldiers' high-end combat skills that have atrophied over the past two decades – and is jacking up the pace of combat training in both the United States and Germany, Stars and Stripes reported.

According to the military news outlet, combat training rotations will increase from 20 this year to 32 in 2020.

At a conference in Washington on Wednesday, the Army's chief of staff, Gen. Mark Milley, said the push will send more units to the National Training Center in Fort Irwin, California, and a similar center in Hohenfels, Germany, to gear up for "high intensity conflict against a strategic global competitor."

As an Army "we are on the mend," Milley said, the outlet reported. "Our near competitors, our adversaries, however have capitalized on the last 17 years to advance their own position."

Milley – expected to replace Gen. Joseph Dunford at the chairman of the Joint Chiefs in 2020 – said for Army combat units, there will be a learning curve on a skill crucial for soldiers during the Cold War, but neglected recent years.

"We stopped training on it," Milley said. "We have an entire generation of leaders who don't really understand completely the whole idea of fires."

Since 2001, the Army's main focus has been to battle insurgencies and go on counterterrorism missions. Meanwhile, a more assertive Russia and China have invested heavily in military modernization efforts, forcing a shift in the military's focus to "great power competition," Milley said.

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Jacking up the pace of combat training in both the United States and Germany, the Army wants to boost soldiers' high-end combat skills that have atrophied over the past two decades, according to Stars and Stripes.
army, military, armed forces, training, soldiers, combat
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2019-24-17
Thursday, 17 January 2019 04:24 PM
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