Soldiers from United States Army and Philippine Army conducted bilateral medical skills training, close quarters and urban battle training, company-size attack exercises and cultural exchanges at Fort Magsaysay during a platoon-to-platoon exchange as part of Operation Lupao from July 9 to August 8. American soldiers are part of Bravo Company, 2nd Battalion, 35th Infantry Regiment “Cacti,” 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division; while Filipino soldiers are part of 3rd Infantry Battalion, 7th Infantry Division.
“The U.S. Army has a lot more in common with the Philippine Army than first meets the eye,” said Captain Andrew Garwitz, Bravo Company commander. “We share similar doctrine and tactics and they have a welcoming culture that lends itself well with working with another army.”
“The Philippine Army has been facing an insurgency for a long time now, so we have a lot we can learn from them as far as counter-insurgency and how to operate in the jungle,” said Garwitz “The best way we can do it is by working side-by-side with them.”
A team leader from Bravo Company, Sgt. Joseph Forrosuelo said there is a brotherhood and a closeness with our Filipino counterparts. “We work together flawlessly,” he added.