by Staff Sgt. Annie Edwards
151 Air Refueling Wing Public Affairs
4/16/2015 - SALT LAKE CITY -- Two
members of the Moroccan Military, serving as delegates through the
State Partnership Program, observed training events and demonstrations
put on by their Utah Army and Air National Guard counterparts at the
Roland R. Wright Air National Guard Base and Camp Williams April 7-9.
The Moroccan delegates spent time with explosive ordnance technicians
from the Air Guard's 151st Civil Engineering Squadron and attended a
presentation taught by a civilian contractor about how the Army trains
Soldiers to deal with improvised explosive devices and unexploded
The visit culminated in the observation of a training exercise conducted
at the IED Training Lane at Camp Williams during which a simulated
landmine was found in a village. Engineers from the Army's 1457th
Engineer Battalion responded to the incident and called in Air Guard
explosive ordinance disposal assets to remove the hazard.
This training event was very beneficial for the Guardsmen because it
provided them an opportunity to improve their job skills while working
with individuals from another branch of service, said 2nd Lt. Corey
Lewis, training officer with 1457th.
Additionally, the opportunity to participate in the State Partnership
Program brought a different perspective to the training event.
"We get to work closely with the Moroccan delegation that is here and
demonstrate some of our capabilities and through a question and answer
session, we both benefit from each other by lessons learned," said
Master Sgt. Timothy Edwards, an EOD technician with the 151st EOD
Flight, has put on demonstrations of EOD capabilities for past
delegation visits, but said this visit was different for his flight
because of the discussion following the training event.
"The opportunity to hear another country's approach to dealing with
[unexploded ordinance] was interesting," said Edwards. "It can be
beneficial for us to hear a new perspective."
The State Partnership Program, first established in 1993, links a
state's National Guard with armed forces from a partner nation and
includes 68 security partnerships involving 74 nations. These
partnerships provide the opportunity to create cooperative, mutually
Utah National Guard members have been working with their Moroccan counterparts since 2003.