Belize - Belize News - - Great Belize Productions - Belize Breaking News
Home » Defense, People & Places » Soldiers from Twenty Two Nations Training Shoulder to Shoulder
May 17, 2022

Soldiers from Twenty Two Nations Training Shoulder to Shoulder

In the event of a national or regional security crisis, Belize will be able to depend on its counterparts from across twenty-two nations participating in Trade Winds 2022. The two-week exercise gives participants an opportunity to train together in various exercises, including maritime training, jungle training, cyber training, and maritime engineering training. These drills are taking place within the span of three hundred miles in Belize and Quintana Roo, Mexico. The Hattieville Gallery Range, in the Belize District is one such training ground being utilized. Today, the press was given access. News Five’s Paul Lopez has the story.


Paul Lopez, Reporting

Today, reporters got an inside look at one of the training elements of Trade Winds 2022.Our journey began at the Police Training Academy in Belmopan where a Joint Interagency Coordination Group is being hosted. After reporters were briefed, it was time to board the US Army’s CH-47- Chinook helicopter. Passengers were required to put on earplugs before boarding the helicopter, to prevent any possible ear damage.  The thirty-three passenger U.S Army CH-47 Chinook helicopter is operated across Central America by Bravo 228 Company. The pilot in command was Robert Colly.


Robert Collie

Robert Collie, CH-47 Pilot in Command, U.S. Army

“Bravo Company 228, we support all of Central America with training exercises, any kind of radar support throughout the area. We are here for Trade Winds in particular, making sure that people need to get where they need to go to and from, anything we are asked to do essentially.”


This iconic military aircraft was our transportation to the Hattieville Gallery Range, in the Belize District. It is a fifteen minute ride from Belmopan over pristine jungle landscape. Upon arrival, Major Rojelio Ramirez provided a briefing.


Major Rojelio Ramirez

Major Rojelio Ramirez, Acting Chief of Staff, Belize Defense Force

“What we are having here is people on the range. They are doing live firing as you might see and hear at the back. I must mention that this exercise commenced two weeks ago, almost two weeks now. We have about three hundred and seventy eight B.D.F. soldiers participating in this exercise. Members of different countries are here sharpening their skills, sharpening their capabilities when it comes to shooting and marksmanship. So, that’s the main thing that is happening here today in the Hatieville Gallery Range.”


Training exercises like this allow these officers to be able to competently utilize their weapons during operations, regardless of what weapon they are using. The multi-national approach to training during the Trade Winds exercise provides an opportunity for participants to build capacity for possible joint operations in the future. Major James Suber is the Trade Winds’ Combat Advisor.


Major James Suber

Major James Suber, Trade Wind Combat Advisor, U.S Army

“This exercise is a little more combat related. It is obviously more geared to security and keeping the peace type environment. But there are other exercises we work with when it comes to natural disasters and responding to that, because we all know there is a security aspect to responding to natural disasters as well and making sure there is continuous security.”


Major Rojelio Ramirez, Acting Chief of Staff, Belize Defense Force

“Another aspect of this is the interoperability. I think the Colonel earlier in the brief mentioned that. That is an important aspect. Also, the integration, if you have an issue, something you want to know, you have one of the planners in Belize, a WhatsApp call a text or whatever. That is an important aspect, the networking aspect. All of this is culminating, and you can see it here. And you can see the soldiers from different countries interacting and socializing and having a good time, while in a training environment.”


Though these are soldiers that are coming together from twenty-two different countries, the philosophies and mindsets that make one a soldier transcends the different cultures. They all share similar ideas on leadership, loyalty, and teamwork. After the two-hour visit where reporters got a better insight on one aspect of the Trade Winds exercise, it was once again time to board the helicopter to head back to Belmopan.


Reporting for News Five I Am Paul Lopez.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

Advertise Here

Comments are closed