Coalition Soldiers Train Iraqi Mortar Troops


Mortar instructors from the U.S, Australia and New Zealand trained Iraqi troops on the use of their recently acquired M120 mortar systems, Sep. 1-12.

The new mortar systems replaced the Iraqis’ Serbian 120 millimeter mortars. The M120 system is more accurate, has additional safety features, and increases the Iraqi army’s ability to deliver indirect fires in the fight against the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, Army officials said.

The U.S. soldiers, from Bandit Troop, 1st Squadron, 3rd Cavalry Regiment, worked alongside mortar instructors from the 6th Royal Australian Regiment and the New Zealand military to train more than 70 members of the Iraqi mortar brigade.

“The Australians themselves had never fired the M120 mortar system so when they found out there were some Americans here who had experience on it they quickly asked for our assistance,” said Army Staff Sgt. Merrell Dews, an Infantry Mortar Leader Course qualified noncommissioned officer and Bandit Troop’s mortar section leader. “Of course we were more than happy to oblige.”

Training

The mortar training event was the second of three sessions and allowed the U.S. and Australian advisors to share their standard operating procedures for the M120 mortar system with the Iraqi troops.

The first session took place Aug. 18-23 and allowed the Iraqi mortarmen to show the…

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