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NEWS | Aug. 14, 2022

Northern Strike gives MDARNG Field Artillery Chance to Test Skills

By Capt. Erica Mitchell 29th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment

Field Artillery Soldiers from the 107th Headquarters, Headquarters Battalion Detachment, join the 29th Combat Aviation Brigade fires cell to enhance their skills during Northern Strike 22.

“The fires cell of the command staff is critically important to the mission,” said Maj. Christian Maisel, brigade fire support officer, 29th Combat Aviation Brigade. “During this exercise, Soldiers from the battalion level join a higher-echelon team that is responsible for advising the commander on the capabilities, limitations, availability and employment of all fires assets including cannons, rockets and attack aviation platforms to support decisions on the battlefield.”

Exercises like Northern Strike give Maryland Army National Guard Field Artillery Soldiers the chance to enhance their skillsets and gain experience.

“Coming from a smaller unit, like the 107th HHB, to support the 29th CAB fires section gives me the opportunity to learn how the planning process and operation pieces work,” said Maryland Army National Guard Soldier from the 107th HHB.

In the 29th CAB fires cell, soldiers also learn how to incorporate electronic warfare into current tactics and doctrine.

“Having additional FISTers[definition], fire support specialist, augment the brigade staff is invaluable for exercises like Northern Strike, said Maisel. “Our FISTers come from diverse backgrounds and skill sets to enable the 29th CAB fires cell to simultaneously operate and maintain tactical data networks, prosecute targets, and synchronize efforts with downtrace and higher elements.”

The combined effort highlights the necessity for dedicated and motivated artillery soldiers in Maryland.

Since the disbandment of the Maryland Army National Guard’s last Field Artillery Battalion in 2009, field artillery soldiers have been using joint training exercises to stay certified and current on skills.

Northern Strike 22 brings approximately 7,400 participants from 19 states and four coalition countries to Northern Michigan to validate the readiness and interoperability of multicomponent, multinational and interagency partners from Aug. 6 to 20, 2022, at the National All Domain Warfighting Center.