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Swedish-U.S. exercise hints to greater challenges in Norway

STOCKHOLM - Swedish and U.S. Marines are providing a small-scale preview of Nordic training to come in neighboring Norway on a much larger scale beginning in October.

Exercise Archipelago Endeavor sharpens the skills of 170 Marines from U.S. Marine Rotational Force Europe in the greater Stockholm Archipelago from August 19 through September 8.

Both Sweden and the United States are contributing to Exercise in Norway from October 25 through November 7, NATO’s largest exercise in recent years with more than 40,000 troops from all 29 NATO member nations plus partner nations Sweden and Finland.

"Seeing our Swedish and U.S. Marines here is really exciting and highlights the interoperability and partnership we’ll see on a much broader scale in October,” said Admiral James Foggo, Allied Joint Force Command Naples commander.  "I’m thrilled to see Sweden’s incredibly professional military in action once again, and look forward to seeing them soon in Norway.”

The Swedes welcome the opportunity to host their American partners.

"The best part of the training is to train together with another nation,” said Swedish Marine Gunnery Sergeant Alexander Edstrom. "Especially the American Marines — I’ve worked with them before and really enjoyed doing so.”

For the U.S. Marines, Archipelago Endeavor provides exposure to the Swedes’ use of their CB-90 assault craft and Carl Gustav recoilless rifle in a challenging amphibious operating environment.  

"We can learn a lot from what the Swedish Marines do and we can teach them what we do,” said U.S. Marine 1st Lieutenant Dan Burton. "The best thing about the Swedes is their professionalism.  They’re so enthusiastic about the training they do here and they’re really good at what they do.”

Both militaries anticipate greater challenges in Trident Juncture, where the days will be darker, colder and wetter, with many more troops and more complex scenarios.

Story by JFC Naples Public Affairs Office

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