The second iteration of Pahlawan Warrior officially began after a combined opening ceremony between the Royal Brunei Land Forces and U.S. Army Pacific at Lumut Camp, Brunei, June 13, 2022. Pahlawan Warrior is a bilateral Army-to-Army exercise between the RBLF and USARPAC that focuses on enhancing partner land force capacity and capabilities, addresses internal security challenges, and increases interoperability operations that reaffirms shared security commitments to the Indo-Pacific region. The Deputy Commanding General of Interoperability for 25th Infantry Division Col. Michael A. van Welie presided over the opening ceremony and addressed the formation on the importance of the USARPAC – RBLF partnership to the Indo-Pacific region.
“Pahlawan Warrior is a feature in our security cooperation calendar and critical to enhancing our joint capability as we each strive to maintain a free and open Indo-Pacific region. Far more important than any technical interoperability we will develop during this exercise are the bonds of friendship and mutual understanding and cultural appreciation that we will develop amongst each of us,” Col. Michael A. van Welie said.
The Chief of Staff of the Royal Brunei Land Forces Lt. Col. Haji Mohammad Shannonnizam bin Sulaiman emphasized how Keris Strike is integral to maintaining a free and open Indo-Pacific region. “Your presence here today is a testament to the close bonds and relationship between our two nations and armies,” bin Sulaiman said. “Exercises like this can inspire confidence and help maintain a free and open Indo-Pacific region. I am very confident that Pahlawan Warrior 2022 will be able to achieve its objective.”
Soldiers assigned to the 3rd Cavalry, 4th Squadron, 3rd Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 25th ID will train alongside the RBLF on jungle skills, military operations in urban terrain, live fire exercises, and conduct a myriad of subject matter expert exchanges where Soldiers share best practices within their field of study. In addition to the various training events planned, Soldiers will participate in sports days to get to know their RBLF counterparts and experience cultural days to learn more about Brunei customs and culture. After the ceremony, U.S. Department of State Counselor Derek Chollet thanked the Soldiers on behalf of President Joe Biden for their commitment to the nation and their efforts on furthering the ties between the two partner nations.