Exercise CHONG JU

An Australian Abrams M1A1 AIM-Main Battle Tank rolls out of its hide as soldiers from the School of Armour begin to assault the battlefield during a training run during Ex CHONG JU held at the Puckapunyal Military Training Area. (Foto: defence.gov.au)

September 4, 2009 -- The Goulburn Valley echoed to the crump of high explosives and the whine of screaming engines this week as EX CHONG JU steamrolled through Puckapunyal.

The biannual maneuver and firepower demonstration showcased to spectators M1A1 Abrams tanks, M113AS4 armored personnel carriers, ASLAV and the Javelin Medium Defensive Fire Support Weapon, all of which are available to an Australian combat team when it employs synchronised arms effects.

EX CHONG JU is named after a series of offensive actions by 3RAR on 29 October 1950 against North Koreans, during which infantry company advances were supported by US Army tanks and artillery.

“Bombs away” as a Royal Australian Air Force F-111 fighter bomber releases its payload on the battlefield during a simulated attack as part of EX CHONG JU. (Foto: defence.gov.au)

An Australian M113AS4 Armoured Personnel Carrier moves into attack position during a combat team combined arms attack as part of EX CHONG JU. (Foto: defence.gov.au)

The exercise is a training activity for the Combat Officer Advanced Course, which trains combat arms officers on combined arms tactics.

This year’s exercise was an opportunity for M113AS4 crews to show the impressive power upgrades of their carriers. The assaulting APCs easily maintained formation with their tanks during the live rehearsal and final fire power demonstration.

During Thursday’s live rehearsal, the organic recovery capability of the Combat Team was also put on display when an M113AS4 bogged during the initial stages of the combat team’s advance. The APC was dragged from its muddy hide as the range reverberated from M1A1 fire of the assaulting force.


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