Tag Archives: Luchtmobiele Brigade

Throwback – Exercise Cerberus Guard

In March 2013 the area around the former Twenthe Airbase was the scene of a large exercise called Cerberus Guard where airmobile forces had the objective to capture the airfield. This article is a throwback to the exercise.

Airmobile Brigade
Troops of 11 Airmobile Brigade captured the airfield

After capturing the airfield, an operating base was established from where the forward bases in Losser and Oldenzaal were supported. From these bases several actions took place, ammongst others in the FC Twente Stadium.

Helicopters from the Defense Helicopter Command approach the airfield in order to drop of troops.

But first during Exercise Cerberus Guard Twenthe airfield had to be captured. The night before, already some pathfinders were dropped close to the airfield. Then on Wednesday 20 March troops of 11 Airmobile Brigade were transported by Cougars and Chinooks of the Defense Helicopter Command to capture the airfield.

A 298 Squadron Chinooks drops troops of 11 Airmobile Brigade at Twenthe airfield.

Troops were dropped close to the runway and fought their way towards the control tower, where the “enemy” occupied several buildings. The goal was to clear this area and to establish control of the airfield.

Twenthe army
Airmobile troops occupy the area next to the runway ait Twenthe airfield after being dropped of.
A Chinook brings in additional troops and supplies

After access to the airfield was secured, the Pathfinders took control of the runway, so that they could guide Hercules aircraft to the airfield. These aircraft would fly daily replenishment missions from Eindhoven Airbase to Twenthe, in order to supply the troops with all things they required for their mission. This ranged from food to ammunition.

This also proved to be a valuable training for the Hercules crew, as being able to perform tactical operations in the Netherlands is quite rare.

Hercules Twenthe
A C-130H-30 climbs out of Runway 06 after a tactical landing

75 years Market Garden commemoration

The month of September is traditionally the period when Operation Market Garden is commemorated in the Netherlands. This year was the 75th anniversary of this failed operation.

Airborne soldiers dropped over the Ginkel heath

On Friday the 20th of September the Ginkelse Heide area was the scene of the rehearsals for the 75 Years Market Garden commemmorations.
Since I had the idea that the crowd would be immense on the Saturday, I decided to have a look at these rehearsals.

That day three waves of paradrops were flown. I missed the first wave, since it was decided to close the N224 road at that point. I was then stuck in the forest, 600 meters away from the drop zone.

When the 2nd wave was flow, I quickly realised that light conditions were terrible, looking straight into the sun. I therefore decided to relocate and was able to face the drops from the front when the 3rd wave was flown.
All in all it was a very impressive sight to see all these paratroopers jump from the planes.

One of the international participants was a United States Marines Corps Hercules
Soldiers jump from a Koninklijke Luchtmacht Hercules