British tanks and their crews are currently taking part in Exercise Arrow in Finland.
According to a news release:
“The Leopard 2 Finnish tanks had been poised in position for a few minutes, surveying what was in front of them and ready to manoeuvre. Then all of a sudden the ground roared, the noise of gun fire erupted and everything was in play – including the British Army’s Challenger 2 Main Battle Tank.
This is Exercise Arrow and an opportunity for the Queen’s Royal Hussars (QRH) to showcase their full capability in front of a sizeable watching audience of media from around the world.”
Tank Commander, Sergeant Kieran Jardine, said in the release that he and his crew relish this kind of experience.
“The Challenger 2 is the biggest armoured vehicle out here and I think it’s the best tank in the world. But of course I’m biased. Wherever we go, it always draws the attention. We’ve loved being in Finland and testing ourselves in an opposing forces role. Our main job is shock action, always to get at the enemy hard, fast and aggressive and destroy what’s in front of us for the rest of the Army to roll in behind. Being here is one of the few occasions where we get to do force on force, instead of being in simulators against a notional enemy. Whereas now, we’re up against a free-thinking, free-moving force, so it’s going to make us think harder. So this is pretty unique being involved.”
Exercise Arrow is taking place in the Pohjankangas training area near Niinisalo Garrison in the west of the country.
The objective over the two weeks, say the British Army, “is to develop the Finnish Defence Force ground combat capabilities and the ability to operate joint fires, alongside international allies, with more than 3,000 troops and 670 vehicles.”