Around 100 high ranking participants, including the Chairman of the Military Committee, General (CZE-A) Petr Pavel, the Deputy Supreme Allied Commander Transformation, Admiral (DEU-N) Manfred Nielsson, and the Commander Joint Force Command Naples, Admiral (USA-N) Michelle Howard, attended the Maritime Expeditionary Operations Conference on 19th and 20th July 2016 in Oeiras in Portugal.
The two days of the conference provided a deep insight into the character of Maritime Expeditionary Operations, in particular in how this NATO ability to project maritime forces at up to strategic distance, delivering decisive joint effect from the sea on land, at sea, in the air, space and cyberspace, will follow NATO’s adaptation to the ever evolving strategic threats.
For the Joint CBRN Defence Centre of Excellence representative, it was important that Maritime Expeditionary Operations are not purely naval operations, but include the application of air and ground forces and effects, too. Thus, the topic of Defence against Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear Weapons plays an important role in this context.
On 11 – 14 July 2016 the Joint Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear Defence Centre of Excellence (JCBRN Def COE) had the honor to host an executive team from Joint Force Commands (JFCs) Brunssum and Naples for conducting the BOLD BLAST ’16 – the Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear Warning and Reporting (CBRN W&R) Exercise.
The aim of the exercise was to train CBRN W&R Cells at Joint Task Force (JTF) and Component Command (CC) levels. The training premises and ICT assets of the JCBRN Def COE provided a good-sized environment for hosted team performing the Higher Control (HICON) tasks.
HICON was responsible for generating the inputs to hierarchy-networked CBRN W&R elements and assessing their outcomes. The elements from NATO & Partners’ bodies and nations (AIRCOM Germany, CRR France, HRDC Spain, national elements from Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Denmark, Latvia, Poland, Slovenia and Sweden) were performing the ATP-45 procedures as training audience to accomplish the exercise’s training objectives. CBRN Reachback Element (JCBRN Def COE) was engaged in the Bold Blast ‘16 as well, providing a Subject Matter Expertise for HICON through a reply on Request for Information raised.
All tasks of the exercise were performed well and they confirmed a necessity of preparing and running complex CBRN scenarios for CBRN W&R training purposes as well as following a modern Alliance’s approaches and trends for Education and Training.
Support to the BOLD BLAST 2016 is conceived as part of long-term contribution to the NATO’s CBRN W&R training activities. The JCBRN Def COE opened the year 2016 by CBRN Analysis Super User Course in March and will continue by Warning and Reporting Specialists Course in October, also planning to participate in other Alliance’s CBRN W&R /CBRN Information Management/ related events.
Today, 11th July 2016, the Joint CBRN Defence Centre of Excellence can welcome Colonel Olivier Lion as the new Director of the Operations Support Department. “It will be an interesting challenge”, Colonel Lion said during the handover period. “After all, I have been Commander of a Regiment until last week, and working in a Centre of Excellence will be a completely different environment now.” But the member of the French Armed Forces is optimistically looking forward to spend three challenging years in the CoE in Vyškov, being responsible for many different field of activities. Just to mention the most important: His Department is providing the CBRN Reachback Support to the Alliance and our Sponsoring Nations.