THAILAND and United States will be co-sponsoring the 37th joint and multinational military exercise Cobra Gold 2018 in many areas around Thailand during the February 13-23, 2018.
Cobra Gold is one of the largest Theater Security Cooperation exercise in Indo-Asia-Pacific region. It is also an integral part of the United States’ commitment to strengthen engagement in the region. Like last year, the Cobra Gold 2018 drill still includes many civil service activities for example, humanitarian assistance and disaster relief to expand regional-level cooperations and collaborations which was considered as a significant part of the whole mission.
The Cobra Gold 2018 drill aims to enhance participating countries’ capability in areas of planning and executing coalition/joint operations, develop relationship with participating countries and enhance competencies in combined operations through various activities which include enhancing maritime security and responding to large scale natural disasters.
The Cobra Gold military training consisted of three main activities which are Command Post Exercise(CPX) in humanitarian aid projects for the public including the high-rank commanders meetings on Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief (HADR), Medical conferences, and Field Training Exercise (FTX) that consisted of many different training exercise activities to level up the capabilities in joint operations and increase regional amity.
For this Cobra Gold 2018, there will be almost 30 countries of combined participants or observers.
The seven countries to participate in full exercises are the US, Thailand, Singapore, South Korea, Indonesia, Japan and Malaysia.
Ten observer countries are Brunei, Laos, Cambodia, Myanmar, Vietnam, Germany, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Brazil and Sweden.
Following nations that are part of the so called Multinational Planning Augmentation Team: Australia, Canada, France, the United Kingdom, Bangladesh, Mongolia, Nepal, the Philippines, Fiji and New Zealand will also be there.
China and India will also join in some ways. From the US alone, there will be more than 6,800 troops to participate in the training exercise on both land and water.
Top: Troops dangle on a rope from a plane during last year’s Cobra Gold exercise. Photo: Facebook.com/ExerciseCobraGold
First in-text: Troops in camouflage participating in last year’s Cobra Gold drill. Photo: Facebook.com/ExerciseCobraGold
Second in-text: US Marines assigned to 2nd Battalion, 5th Marines test out edible roots found in the jungles of Thailand during a jungle survival training as part of Cobra Gold 2017. Photo: Facebook.com/ExerciseCobraGold
Below: US Marine Corps Lance Cpl. Malik Clark, 2nd Battalion 5th Marine Regiment, carries a young Thai student during a community relations visit to Ban Chong Kapad School in Chanthaburi Province during last year’s Cobra Gold drill. Photo: Photo: Facebook.com/ExerciseCobraGold
By Piboon Awasdaruharote