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571st MSAS advisers teach in Peru

  • Published
  • By Tech. Sgt. Jesse Baehm
  • 571st Mobility Support Advisory Squadron
The 571st Mobility Support Advisory Squadron recently concluded its third mobile training team at the request of the Military Advisory and Assistance Group at the United States Embassy Peru.

The partner nation focus was Peru's air force, surveillance and reconnaissance. The engagement, which began Aug. 14, was designed by Travis air advisors to build Peruvian capacity, increase interoperability and ultimately support United States Southern Command objectives. Six air advisers, representing the 621st Contingency Response Wing, redeployed Aug. 30 after 17 days of military seminars and training.

The training relied on a building block approach and common Airmen culture to train 42 students in the areas of communications, aircraft maintenance, avionics and logistics using a variety of hands-on activities and classroom instruction. These courses, designed by the mobility advisers, were engineered to increase interoperability between the United States and Peru to tackle shared regional security challenges.

"Since 1942, this unit has performed the aerial photography mission and satisfied both military and civilian requirements of the country of Peru, including producing the original aerial images of the now famous Nazca Lines and Machu Picchu," said Maj. B. E. Trinkle, Peru MTT mission commander. The 571 MSAS is proud to be able to advise (Peru) and increase both the capacity and capability of this mission set in support of mutual interests as they look to the future."

Tech. Sgt. Joseph Pierson, 571st MSAS aircraft maintenance/management analysis air adviser, worked closely with the Peruvian air force aircraft maintenance specialists on a TPE-331-12 Turboprop engine. Pierson instructed them on how to effectively use engine power management and operational sequence in order to effectively troubleshoot and maintain engine health.

The hands-on training Pierson provided enabled more effective handling of a critical component of the flying operation. Institutionalization of the training provided was validated via pre-and post-knowledge tests.

"We are thankful for the 571st MSAS and its invaluable support to better this unit's (intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance) operations," Maj. Gen. Juan De Dios La Torre Sipan, director of surveillance and reconnaissance.

Aside from the engine seminar, the MSAS team also helped the partner nation improve avionics and logistics processes.

Master Sgt. David Guevara, avionics instructor from the Inter-American Air Forces Academy, augmented the 571st MSAS mobility training team. This event provided the first U.S. led avionics specific training to the 335th Air Squadron with Peru's surveillance and reconnaissance. The Peruvian air force avionics technicians were able to apply theoretical knowledge and practical hands-on training immediately into their current maintenance practices.

Tech. Sgt. Jesse Baehm, logistics air adviser, identified a potential health hazard in a partner nation warehouse during his observation immediately. He advised warehouse managers and recommended alternate storage options for hazardous materials, enabling the partner nation to correct an unsafe condition.

"This was our third successful engagement working with (Peru) and I've been fortunate to be a part of all three events," said Tech. Sgt. Christopher White, MSAS team sergeant. "Air advising is much more than teaching or training partner nation personnel. It is about relationships and we have been successful in these engagements because we have established a relationship of trust, life long friendships and set a foundation for a long-term partnership with the (Peruvian air force)."

This engagement represents a step forward for USSOUTHCOM's objectives in the region. MSAS air advisers are a key asset in the Air Force's enduring building partner capacity mission, linking each successive engagement together with previous events to achieve freedom, stability and prosperity in the region.