Portugal, once again, organized a large-scale military Exercise in its national soil. Orion 17 was held in the Center and South of Portugal where some arid landscapes and temperatures between 35 and 42ºC are able to replica some areas of Africa or the Middle East.
Portugal has unique conditions for operational training and is a perfect platform for North Atlantic Treaty (NATO) and/or European Union (EU) forces. About 2000 military personnel, where around 350 were American and Spanish Paratroopers. C-130s and MV-22 where employed for Parachute deployments and Special Forces insertions.
The exercises of the Orion series are held every year and have positioned Portugal as a NATO HUB for the execution of operational training. The positioning of Portugal makes it very easy to involve forces stationed in Southern European Flank, or forces in the projection or retraction of NATO operations.
In this Video you can watch some Cross Training between the Portuguese 1st Para BN & US 173rd Airborne Brigade, in Mafra Escola das Armas MOUT training facilities.