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German soldiers conduct convoy operations during exercise Allied Spirit X in Hohenfels, Germany, April 4, 2019.

German soldiers conduct convoy operations during exercise Allied Spirit X in Hohenfels, Germany, April 4, 2019. (Judge Jones/U.S. Army)

German soldiers conduct convoy operations during exercise Allied Spirit X in Hohenfels, Germany, April 4, 2019.

German soldiers conduct convoy operations during exercise Allied Spirit X in Hohenfels, Germany, April 4, 2019. (Judge Jones/U.S. Army)

A German soldier engages opposing forces during exercise Allied Spirit X in Hohenfels, Germany, April 5, 2019.

A German soldier engages opposing forces during exercise Allied Spirit X in Hohenfels, Germany, April 5, 2019. (Shawn Pierce/U.S. Army)

Sgt. Brittani Thompson, 92nd Military Police Company, conducts a security patrol during Allied Spirit X at the Joint Multinational Readiness Center in Hohenfels, Germany, April 7, 2019.

Sgt. Brittani Thompson, 92nd Military Police Company, conducts a security patrol during Allied Spirit X at the Joint Multinational Readiness Center in Hohenfels, Germany, April 7, 2019. (Mark Hanson/U.S. Army)

British soldiers of the Prince of Wales's Royal Regiment provide security for a soldier bounding past troops during exercise Allied Spirit X in Hohenfels, Germany, April 4, 2019. Approximately 5,600 participants from 15 nations are at the exercise at the 7th Army Training Command's Hohenfels Training Area in southeastern Germany.

British soldiers of the Prince of Wales's Royal Regiment provide security for a soldier bounding past troops during exercise Allied Spirit X in Hohenfels, Germany, April 4, 2019. Approximately 5,600 participants from 15 nations are at the exercise at the 7th Army Training Command's Hohenfels Training Area in southeastern Germany. (Julian Padua/U.S. Army)

Staff Sgt. Anthony Siegenthaler, assigned to the 339th Psychological Operations Company, speaks with his German counterpart during Allied Spirit X at the Joint Multinational Readiness Center in Hohenfels, Germany, April 7, 2019.

Staff Sgt. Anthony Siegenthaler, assigned to the 339th Psychological Operations Company, speaks with his German counterpart during Allied Spirit X at the Joint Multinational Readiness Center in Hohenfels, Germany, April 7, 2019. (Mark Hanson/U.S. Army)

German and U.S. soldiers conduct tactical loading and unloading drills aboard a U.S. CH-47 Chinook helicopter attached to 1st Aviation Regiment, 1st Infantry Division, during Allied Spirit X, at the Joint Multinational Readiness Center in Hohenfels, Germany, April 3, 2019.

German and U.S. soldiers conduct tactical loading and unloading drills aboard a U.S. CH-47 Chinook helicopter attached to 1st Aviation Regiment, 1st Infantry Division, during Allied Spirit X, at the Joint Multinational Readiness Center in Hohenfels, Germany, April 3, 2019. (Mark Hanson/U.S. Army)

A Danish servicemember cleans his weapon prior to moving into the field for Allied Spirit X at Joint Multinational Readiness Center in Hohenfels, Germany, April 4, 2019.   The exercise includes approximately 5,600 participants from 15 nations at the 7th Army Training Command?s Hohenfels Training Area in southeastern Germany.

A Danish servicemember cleans his weapon prior to moving into the field for Allied Spirit X at Joint Multinational Readiness Center in Hohenfels, Germany, April 4, 2019. The exercise includes approximately 5,600 participants from 15 nations at the 7th Army Training Command?s Hohenfels Training Area in southeastern Germany. (Joshua Shay/U.S. Army)

Sgt. John Lampe, 92nd Military Police Company, conducts a security patrol during Allied Spirit X at the Joint Multinational Readiness Center in Hohenfels, Germany, April 7, 2019.

Sgt. John Lampe, 92nd Military Police Company, conducts a security patrol during Allied Spirit X at the Joint Multinational Readiness Center in Hohenfels, Germany, April 7, 2019. (Mark Hanson/U.S. Army)

Col. Thorsten Alme, the chief of staff for 1st Armored Division of the German armed forces, Maj. Gen. Juergen-Joachim von Sandrart, the commander of the 1AD, and Brig. Dieter Meyerhoff, the deputy commander and commander of troops for 1AD, discuss operations for exercise Allied Spirit X in Hohenfels Training Area, April 4, 2019. The German unit is acting as the high command for this exercise, a first for the Allied Spirit series. Approximately 5,630 servicemembers from 15 nations are participating in the exercise.

Col. Thorsten Alme, the chief of staff for 1st Armored Division of the German armed forces, Maj. Gen. Juergen-Joachim von Sandrart, the commander of the 1AD, and Brig. Dieter Meyerhoff, the deputy commander and commander of troops for 1AD, discuss operations for exercise Allied Spirit X in Hohenfels Training Area, April 4, 2019. The German unit is acting as the high command for this exercise, a first for the Allied Spirit series. Approximately 5,630 servicemembers from 15 nations are participating in the exercise. (Christopher Stewart/U.S. Army)

GRAFENWOEHR, Germany — Germany’s 1st Armored Division is spearheading a “unique” multinational exercise bringing together thousands of U.S. and allied troops in a training area in the southeast, officials said.

Exercise Allied Spirit X is a series of training exercises where countries rotate as the brigade headquarters to lead the exercise. Thus, “all participating nations gain experience working together in, and for, a multinational effort,” the U.S. Army said in a statement.

One focus is testing each nation’s ability to communicate during a fight, officials said.

Approximately 5,600 participants from 15 nations, including 1,300 Americans, are taking part in the drills at the U.S. Army’s Hohenfels training area from March 30 until April 17.

During the exercise, soldiers are also developing a variety of skills, such as house-to-house combat, where soldiers clear rooms against a fictitious enemy force. They are also conducting large-scale mock battles, complete with a slew of fighting vehicles from the participating countries. The exercise also serves as a way for participants to test out modern warfare techniques in a multinational setting, like deploying small drones to scout for enemy positions.

Allied Spirit X is “unique in its ability to provide hands-on experience and testing of secure communications between NATO allies and partners,” according to a U.S. Army statement.

The enemy forces are played by some of the 1,300 U.S. troops involved. Other participants include allied and partner nations such as Germany, Italy, Lithuania, Turkey and Israel.

“It is a great opportunity to exercise in Hohenfels, since with the exception of the German army training area in Letzlingen, there would be nothing equivalent in Europe,” German Maj. Gen. Juergen-Joachim von Sandrart said, according to the news portal Onetz.de.

He said he would like to send one of his four brigades to Hohenfels every year.

egnash.martin@stripes.com Twitter: @Marty_Stripes

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