Written by: Senior Airman China Shock, Minot Air Force Base Public Affairs
A team of 91st Security Forces Group Defenders provide cover during Bully Vigilance, an exercise designed to test the 91st Missile Wing’s readiness to respond to an outside threat at Minot Air Force Base, North Dakota, Oct. 13, 2022. Exercises like BV provide training opportunities for components, units and task forces to deter, and if necessary, defeat, a military attack against the United States and to employ forces as directed by the President. U.S. Air Force photo I Senior Airman Zachary Wright
MINOT AIR FORCE BASE, N.D. — The 91st Missile Wing conducted an exercise simulating the retaking of an intercontinental ballistic missile launch facility, Oct. 13, 2022. The exercise, called Bully Vigilance 22-2, involved over 500 defenders from the 91st Security Forces Group and 91st Missile Wing Inspector General Office.
“BV 22-2 was a weeklong exercise designed to test the 91st Missile Wing’s ability to conduct readiness operations and protect our national defense assets, with the goal of evaluating areas to further improve the Wing’s nuclear readiness and strategic deterrence capabilities,” said Tech. Sgt. Corey Wood, Non-Commissioned Officer in Charge of Wing Inspections and Exercises. The moment the simulated takeover was initiated, defenders from all squadrons in the security forces group were recalled to the base to arm up and prepare to retake the facility.
“The exercise was a good test of my leadership abilities for several reasons,” said Tech. Sgt. Elias Aggen, a 91st Security Forces Group defender. “It kicked off during changeover for the missile complex, so we were trying to communicate between two different squadrons, the Missile Alert Facilities (MAFs) and other alert teams involved.”
Aggen and his team of defenders had to assault approximately 800 meters of open terrain during abnormally strong winds, topping out at gusts of over 50 knots per hour.
“It was definitely a challenge trying to direct forces in that wind,” said Aggen. Members from the 791st Missile Security Forces Squadron and 91st Missile Security Forces Squadron were first on the scene, with the objective of securing the immediate area around the facility, allowing the other defenders safe entry. “It’s not everyday that you’re put into a situation to lead others, especially those you don’t work with everyday,” said Airman 1st Class Taylor Hendrickson, a 91st Security Forces Group defender. “But by falling back on all of the tools and tactics I have been taught during training and the mentorship of my senior leaders, the responding units and I were able to successfully execute the mission.”
After neutralizing the simulated threats, the defenders reviewed their performance of the exercise and how they can improve in the future.
“The defenders of the 91 SFG showcased their dedication to providing security to our nation’s most vital assets,” said Wood. The 91st Missile Wing operates 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, maintaining and defending 150 Intercontinental Ballistic Missile Launch Facilities and 15 Missile Alert Facilities spanning 8,500 square miles. The Wing’s commitment to one of the most important missions in the Department of Defense provides the nation with a combat-ready nuclear force deterring adversaries across the globe.
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