FAIRBANKS, Alaska More than two thousand Fort Wainwright soldiers are getting ready to deploy at the end of the summer to Iraq in support of Operation Inherent Resolve, military intervention against the Islamic State.
Fort Wainwright soldiers are in the middle of a week-long training which is part of the 'Lethal Athlete Program'.
Fort Wainwright soldiers are in the middle of a week-long training which is part of the 'Lethal Athlete Program' - instructor Gabriel Greenstein traveled from the Netherlands to conduct this training to prepare members of the 1st Stryker Brigade Combat Team for their upcoming deployment to support the mission against ISIS.
"It's a long flight, 25 hours to be here, but the reactions are very good and the brigade commander thought it was a good program to prepare the guys for Iraq and all," said Greenstein.
The goal of the training is to show the soldiers some skills they may not see in other aspects of their military training.
"First step is functional fitness, and again, operational fitness, for those guys to be ready, so it should be important to be strong, flexible, coordination, balance, and all those elements that normally in the programs you don't see, preparing them to expect the unexpected," said Greenstein.
Greenstein kept the soldiers on their toes by shouting 'grenade' to get them ready for what they might face.
"Of course he's like always being hard on us, because you know this is what we're actually preparing for, this is real life that we're training for, it's not just like a regular certification or a class we need to get through, this is actually something we're going to have to use once we go overseas," said participant in the course, Sgt. Jordan Davis.
The training is catered specifically to the type of situations they may be facing in Iraq, including people coming up to them pretending to need help and then attacking them.
When asked how this training made Sgt. Yimian Perez feel, he said, "honestly a little anxious, makes you feel like I have more training to do with my soldiers and prepare them for this upcoming event, and honestly a little excited cause I think we're going to do great."
The 1st Stryker Brigade Combat Team also known as the 'Arctic Wolves' is preparing as much as they can before they face these circumstances in a real combat situation.