The Argentine and Brazilian armies carried out combined exercise Arandú, deploying 1,400 troops in the Argentine province of Corrientes to achieve greater interoperability between both armed forces, Argentina’s Ministry of Defense said in a statement.
“Combined training in the field is key to practical learning because it plays a fundamental role in all military activity,” Juan Belikow, a defense specialist and professor of international relations at the University of Buenos Aires, Argentina, told Diálogo on September 2.
The operational training, July 31-August 4, included the use of armored vehicles; the execution of airmobile, airborne, and special operations troop actions; as well as other actions to take advantage of success and merge, in a conventional combat tactical framework.
Vehicles manned by Brazilian and Argentine troops carried out land navigations, assaults, and attacks on simulated targets, together with shooting practice with eight infantry fighting vehicles and five VCBR Guarani. Day and night tactical exercises were also carried out with the support of units from the Armored Engineer Battalion 2, with the construction of an M4T6 floating bridge over the Miriñay River, Argentine digital defense news site Zona Militar reported.
“The cooperation and strategic alliance of Brazil and Argentina is what makes this region strong, which is privileged in its natural resources but also in its human resources and above all in being a region of peace, without weapons of mass destruction and of respect for the sovereignty of States,” Argentina’s Defense Minister Jorge Taiana said in a statement.
“Arandú was an exercise with the objective of consolidating military cooperation between both countries and strengthening the ties of union and friendship between the armies of the two nations,” the Brazilian Army said.
A field military hospital was also deployed, which had the capacity to diagnose and treat patients during the activities, with high-end equipment and fully autonomous.
The Arandú Brigade had a command element that directed operations through a combined General Staff, with members from both armies. It was composed of an Armored Task Force, a Parachute and Air Assault Task Force, a Special Operations Force company, and an Aviation company, Argentine news site Infobae reported.
“The combined exercises have great importance in terms of coordination to get the teams to work together, as well as the readiness of military units to put into practice what was acquired in different training,” Belikow said. “In addition, compatibility, techniques, tactics, strategies, and operability in the field are tested in simulations of real situations.”
“Throughout the last 40 years, the strategic tie with Brazil has been one of the cornerstones of regional integration in South America,” the Argentine Ministry of Defense indicated. “This exercise represents the friendship and trust existing between both armed forces, which allows us to consolidate the region as a zone of peace.”
“This type of training helps to strengthen and increase the interoperability of the participating forces in order to test combined capabilities,” Argentine Army Colonel José Colombo, head of the Department of Press and Institutional Communication of the Armed Forces’ Joint Chiefs of Staff, told Diálogo. “Our integration with Brazil in defense matters is not something new but a tradition already.”
Service members of both armies carried out an air assault operation on a target, using war ammunition and special operations troops. They also carried out an attack on a target, while the armored platoons exercised combat procedures and attack maneuvers as they faced the enemy.
For Belikow, beyond the fact that these types of events fall within the framework of increasing mutual trust, “they can be taken advantage of for eventual deployments in peacekeeping missions, which is a very important component for Brazil and Argentina, since they have worked together in operations under the mandate of the United Nations Organization.”
“This integration is evident with exchanges of officers and noncommissioned officers, Brazilian military who attend our training institutes such as war schools and vice versa, combined air, sea, and land exercises and other specific activities,” Col. Colombo concluded.