US soldiers to train Arctic warfare in Lapland from Monday
Darkness, deep snow, and extreme survival challenges in temperatures that can drop below -30 degrees Celsius. Add a fall in an ice lake and you have the flavor of what the US soldiers will learn as the bilateral exercise involving up to 290 personnel kicks off on February 6.
The specialists in Arctic training from the Jaeger Brigade will instruct the participants in survival skills in winter conditions, combat techniques and sustainment of operating capability, the Army unit based in Sodankylä says in a statement.
The training area is some 100 km inside the Arctic Circle. To the east is Russia’s Kola Peninsula.
Finland, which stands with one foot inside NATO, has since Russia’s attack on Ukraine a year ago said it would invite for increased international exercise volume with key partners in the transition period to full membership in the North Atlantic Alliance.
Last winter, Finnish soldiers from the North participated in the Norwegian-led NATO exercise Cold Response with troops training at Porsangermoen in Finnmark, Norway’s northernmost Army camp.
The U.S. Army personnel now in Lapland are light infantry and battalion headquarters’ elements.