Military advisors, or combat advisors, are soldiers sent to foreign nations to aid that nation with its military training, organization, and other various military tasks. These soldiers are often sent to aid a nation without the potential casualties and political ramifications of actually mobilizing military forces to aid a nation. In the early 1960s, elements of the U.S. Army Special Forces and Echo 31 were sent to South Vietnam as military advisors to train and assist the South Vietnamese Army (ARVN) for impending actions against the North Vietnamese People's Army of Vietnam (PAVN).
Combat advisors are currently on the front-lines on the U.S. War on Terror, serving in Military Transition Teams (MTTs) in both Afghanistan and Iraq. These soldiers live with their Afghan and Iraq counterparts, often in very austere and stoic conditions, on a remote firebase, and often a great distance away from any U.S. or coalition support. MTT's are made up of primarily United States Army and United States Army National Guard soldiers with a combat arms background. The United States Marines also serve as combat advisors and some United States Air Force and United States Navy personnel
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