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Security Forces train Airmen to protect space resources

Airmen of the 90th Ground Training Squadron prepare to enter a room with a hostage situation in place Feb. 8 at Camp Guernsey, Wyo. Camp Guernsey is an Army Reserve training ground used by the 90th Space Wing for convoy security, sniper training and close quarters combat training including other specialty training. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Javier Cruz Jr.)

Airmen of the 90th Ground Training Squadron prepare to enter a room with a hostage situation in place Feb. 8 at Camp Guernsey, Wyo. Camp Guernsey is an Army Reserve training ground used by the 90th Space Wing for convoy security, sniper training and close quarters combat training including other specialty training. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Javier Cruz Jr.)

CAMP GUERNSEY, Wyo. (AFNEWS) -- Senior Airman Joshua Newton holds the flashbang up high in the air and his three teammates know what that means without uttering a single word.

It is time to breach the room and they all look away as he carefully leans forward and chucks the grenade into the room. As the flashbang goes off disorienting the room's occupants they rush into the room with quick efficient movements. Every team member has a separate responsibility in securing the room and in a real world situation one missed assignment could mean death or the destruction of a valuable national resource.

Airman Newton is an instructor for the 90th Space Wing Ground Combat Training Squadron, based at F.E Warren AFB. A two-hour drive away at Camp Guernsey, he teaches the close-quarters battle of their course.

The instruction is vital to the protection of Air Force Space Command resources and people, said the course's commander Maj. Joseph Gallagher.

"We are providing a little bit more advanced training for our security forces," he said. "The resources we are charged with protecting are worth billions of dollars, so we can be very demanding of our students."

Major Gallagher explained that the course is an effort to transition the security forces mindset from that of a static ground force to an attack and defend force. The students need to be comfortable with their weapons to make it work, he said.

"If they can't handle their weapons they can't pass," he said. "They need to be able to put shots on target."

The curriculum of the course was built through the teamwork of numerous experienced security forces people and local and federal police agencies.

"It's a bunch of different skill sets coming together and taking everything we know and picking out what works best," he said. "If somebody comes in with new ideas, we are open to looking at them and seeing if they have a place in our instruction."

The Major believes the key to success is repetition.

"If you train continuously when bad things happen you will be ready," he said. "We want to do bad things to bad people."

Airman Newton says that the practice helps the security forces build a strong team that can do its mission quickly and effectively.

"You really don't think about it when you get in the situation," he said. "When you get with a team, it just starts flowing and it is a good feeling because you know those three guys have your back at anytime."