US

About 600 US and Georgian troops hold exercises to prepare for rapid reaction force

  • Georgian soldier aims his rifle during the joint US-Georgia military exercise Noble Partner 2015 at the military base of Vaziani outside Tbilisi, Georgia, Sunday, May 17, 2015. Exercise Noble Partner is a bilateral effort focused on enhancing US and Georgian NATO Response Force interoperability in the context of military-to-military relationships, the United States Army Europe says on its website. It involves some 600 Georgian and US service members. (AP Photo/Shakh Aivazov)

    Georgian soldier aims his rifle during the joint US-Georgia military exercise Noble Partner 2015 at the military base of Vaziani outside Tbilisi, Georgia, Sunday, May 17, 2015. Exercise Noble Partner is a bilateral effort focused on enhancing US and Georgian NATO Response Force interoperability in the context of military-to-military relationships, the United States Army Europe says on its website. It involves some 600 Georgian and US service members. (AP Photo/Shakh Aivazov)  (The Associated Press)

  • US and Georgian servicemen take part in the joint US-Georgia military exercise Noble Partner 2015 at the military base of Vaziani outside Tbilisi, Georgia, Sunday, May 17, 2015. Exercise Noble Partner is a bilateral effort focused on enhancing US and Georgian NATO Response Force interoperability in the context of military-to-military relationships, the United States Army Europe says on its website. It involves some 600 Georgian and US service members. (AP Photo/Shakh Aivazov)

    US and Georgian servicemen take part in the joint US-Georgia military exercise Noble Partner 2015 at the military base of Vaziani outside Tbilisi, Georgia, Sunday, May 17, 2015. Exercise Noble Partner is a bilateral effort focused on enhancing US and Georgian NATO Response Force interoperability in the context of military-to-military relationships, the United States Army Europe says on its website. It involves some 600 Georgian and US service members. (AP Photo/Shakh Aivazov)  (The Associated Press)

  • US servicemen take part in the joint US-Georgia military exercise Noble Partner 2015 at the military base of Vaziani outside Tbilisi, Georgia, Sunday, May 17, 2015. Exercise Noble Partner is a bilateral effort focused on enhancing US and Georgian NATO Response Force interoperability in the context of military-to-military relationships, the United States Army Europe says on its website. It involves some 600 Georgian and US service members. (AP Photo/Shakh Aivazov)

    US servicemen take part in the joint US-Georgia military exercise Noble Partner 2015 at the military base of Vaziani outside Tbilisi, Georgia, Sunday, May 17, 2015. Exercise Noble Partner is a bilateral effort focused on enhancing US and Georgian NATO Response Force interoperability in the context of military-to-military relationships, the United States Army Europe says on its website. It involves some 600 Georgian and US service members. (AP Photo/Shakh Aivazov)  (The Associated Press)

About 600 U.S. and Georgian troops are conducting joint exercises aimed at training the armed forces of the former Soviet republic for participation in the NATO Response Force.

Col. Michael Foster, commander of the U.S. 173rd Airborne Brigade, said the exercises are "an absolutely unique opportunity for us" and "the way we are going to be fighting in the future."

Georgia has aspirations of joining NATO and contributed troops to the NATO-led military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan.

In the field exercise held Sunday on the Vaziani base outside the Georgian capital, troops simulated a mission to drive the enemy from a populated center and an airport.

The exercises began May 11 with theoretical training and end on May 24. Sunday was the first day of field exercises.