Slovak Shield was designed as a certification exercise for the multinational NATO enhanced Vigilance Activities Battlegroup Slovakia, and represents NATO's commitment to the security of the Alliance's eastern flank. At the same time, it significantly underlined NATO's deterrence and defence strategy.
The exercise brought together about 2000 soldiers from seven different nations, including Czechia, Germany, Slovenia, the United States, Slovakia, Hungary, and Poland. More than 600 military vehicles took part, including armoured vehicles, tanks, helicopters, and drones. The goal of the exercise was to test the readiness and interoperability of the participating units in a simulated combat scenario.
One of the most noteworthy aspects of Exercise Slovak Shield 2023 was the fact that it was the first-ever joint exercise between Hungarian and Slovak forces. This was a significant development for the two countries. By training together, they demonstrated their commitment to cooperation and partnership within NATO.
The exercise was divided into several phases, each focusing on different aspects of modern warfare. The first phase involved the deployment of troops and equipment to the training area, followed by a series of live-fire exercises that tested the soldiers' marksmanship and tactical skills. The second phase focused on counterinsurgency operations, which included simulated urban combat scenarios and the use of non-lethal weapons.
The final phase of the exercise involved a large-scale, full-spectrum combat simulation, which tested the ability of the multinational force to work together in a high-stress environment. The scenario involved a simulated invasion of NATO territory by a hostile force, requiring the participating units to coordinate their efforts and respond to a variety of threats.
Exercise Slovak Shield 2023 was an essential event for NATO, demonstrating the alliance's commitment to deterring threats and defending its member states. The exercise showcased the interoperability and readiness of NATO forces, as well as the importance of multinational cooperation and partnership in modern warfare.