Army to stage 'realistic' guerrilla war exercise in rural Carolinas

Army Special Forces candidates will train in a “realistic” guerrilla war to be fought in rural North Carolina and South Carolina counties later this month, according to the service.  

Known as the Robin Sage training exercise, the two-week “unconventional warfare” drill is the final test of candidates’ Special Forces Qualification Course training. 

The drill will take place Jan. 22 to Feb. 4 on privately owned land across 25 counties in North Carolina and three counties in South Carolina, the U.S. Army's John F. Kennedy Special Warfare Center and School said in a news release.

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The Army did not provide the exact times and locations of the exercises, which will include the candidates fighting against “realistic opposing forces and guerrilla freedom fighters” in a fictional, unstable country known as Pineland.

“Candidates are placed in an environment of political instability characterized by armed conflict, forcing Soldiers to analyze and solve problems to meet the challenges of this ‘real-world’ training,” the school noted.

To make the training more realistic, service members from units across Fort Bragg will act as opposition forces and civilian volunteers will be role-players.

Residents in the area were informed they “may hear blank gunfire and see occasional flares,” to make sure that they don’t mistake the fighting for terrorism or criminal activity.

The statement adds that “controls are in place to ensure there is no risk to persons or property,” but residents with concerns “should contact local law enforcement officials, who will immediately contact exercise control officials.”