Security forces new objective molds lethality, readiness

An Airman with the 841st Missile Security Forces Squadron takes cover during a training scenario June 24, 2018, at Fort Harrison, Mont.

An Airman with the 841st Missile Security Forces Squadron takes cover during a training scenario June 24, 2018, at Fort Harrison, Mont. Fort Harrison has been used by Malmstrom security forces as a testing ground for Airmen’s current knowledge base. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Tristan Truesdell)

An Airman with the 841st Missile Security Forces Squadron locks on to a target while keeping cover during a training scenario June 24, 2018, at Fort Harrison, Mont.

An Airman with the 841st Missile Security Forces Squadron locks on to a target while keeping cover during a training scenario June 24, 2018, at Fort Harrison, Mont. Airmen spend two days running through real-world scenarios to improve the lethality portion of their job. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Tristan Truesdell)

An Airman with the 841st Missile Security Forces Squadron pins down an opposing member during a training scenario June 24, 2018, at Fort Harrison, Mont.

An Airman with the 841st Missile Security Forces Squadron pins down an opposing member during a training scenario June 24, 2018, at Fort Harrison, Mont. Airmen are split into teams and pitted against each other to complete their specific objective, while also using new training they’ve received. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Tristan Truesdell)

Airmen with the 841st Missile Security Forces Squadron corner an opposing member during a training scenario June 24, 2018, at Fort Harrison, Mont.

Airmen with the 841st Missile Security Forces Squadron corner an opposing member during a training scenario June 24, 2018, at Fort Harrison, Mont. A new objective, named Guardian Edge, has been established to empower and encourage Airmen to take charge and promote lethality and readiness amongst their squadron. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Chiyanna Maxwell)

Airmen with the 841st Missile Security Forces Squadron run through protocol to enter a room during training June 14, 2018, at Malmstrom Air Force Base, Mont.

Airmen with the 841st Missile Security Forces Squadron run through protocol to enter a room during training June 14, 2018, at Malmstrom Air Force Base, Mont. Throughout training, Airmen use simunitions, or non-lethal training ammunition, to build and hone their current skills as a nuclear cop and security defender. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Tristan Truesdell)

MALMSTROM AIR FORCE BASE, Mont. -- In October 2017, Secretary of Defense James Mattis published guidance for all Department of Defense personnel which included the importance and push to promote readiness within the military and evolving our current forces to become more lethal.

Recently activated under the Missile Security Operating Concept, the 841st Missile Security Forces Squadron achieved this vision by establishing a new objective.

“The vision of having a more lethal, nuclear security force has been said over and over,” said Tech. Sgt. Michael Fuller, 841st MSFS NCO in charge of operations support. “Secretary Mattis is really pushing for lethality as opposed to being an administrative force.”

This new objective, called Guardian Edge, empowers Airmen of all ranks to take charge and test their mettle to increase lethality and readiness while maintaining a nuclear defense.

“The goal is to have more realistic and operational training to build fundamentals of being a security forces defender, compared to a nuclear cop,” said Fuller.

“We’re trying to build communications, weapon skills, weapons knowledge and trust between Airmen and their NCOs,” he continued.

On training days, the senior-most senior airmen to staff sergeants teach classes to build skills, knowledge and tailor procedures to their own individual groups.

“These Airmen have taken charge and are now running every training day for us,” said Staff Sgt. Brien Rocha, 841st MSFS member. “We cover everything encompassed in security forces. We’re trying to set the example for the rest of security forces here and in general.”

Airmen are guided step by step on how to complete an objective before they take the task upon themselves to carry it out without assistance.

After approximately eight weeks of training, flights of Airmen travel to Fort Harrison, Montana, to test the fruition of their training, utilizing numerous obstacle courses and firing ranges to improve their skills and run through real-world scenarios.

“Fort Harrison is supposed to be the testing ground,” said Rocha. “You’re not necessarily taught certain things when you get down there, you’re going down to test your knowledge base.”

In the future, the squadron hopes to tie other squadrons into their training, such as the 341st Civil Engineer Squadron with explosives support, or cooperating with the 40th Helicopter Squadron for training involving aircraft.

Although Guardian Edge is new, the squadron plans to make it into a norm and perhaps one day, a norm Air Force-wide.

“It’ll be a great thing for Air Force Global Strike Command and security forces as a whole,” said Rocha. “I hope this positive energy we’ve got going here bleeds on to other bases. If we can get this at my next base, wherever it may be, I can continue it there too.”