EUROPEAN ADVANCE 2010
The EURAD 10 was taking place in Allentsteig (Lower Austria) from 13th September to 24th September 2010. Besides Austria as a host nation, eight other nations, i.e. Germany, France, Ireland, Italy, Montenegro, Serbia, Slovenia and Switzerland, were participating with state-of-the-art equipment like unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) elements as well as chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear (CBRN) specialists and staff officers.
Austria’s national level of ambition includes the commitment of staff officers and troops to a multinational framework brigade and/or the European Union Battle Group (EUBG) operating in an international crisis response scenario. Therefore, the European Advance Exercise series was initiated in 2007 with the aim to enhance brigade level capacities and capabilities.
The exercise EURAD 10 was designed as a combined joint event to take place at the military training area of Allentsteig, integrating land elements, air elements (for a specific air exercise) and special operations forces (SOF) elements (as liaison elements to the 4th Multinational Brigade - MNB 4) in order to simulate SOF activities within the area of operations (AOO). Simultaneously, multinational chemical, biological, radioactive and nuclear (CBRN) warfare units were participating in a military humanitarian disaster relief exercise (D-A-CH), taking place at the Tritolwerk Training Ground (a former industrial plant), located in the vicinity of Wiener Neustadt. In a second phase, the German and Austrian units were used as combat support elements for the framework brigades. In addition, students from the universities of Innsbruck and Salzburg were taking part in a specific IO/NGO training scenario, giving them the possibility to get first-hand experience as IO/NGO representatives of a UN fact-finding mission.
With the 4th Multinational Brigade (MNB 4) representing the main audience for the EURAD 10, the exercise was oriented to train the planning and the execution of an EU-led tactical-level crisis management operation (CMO), focussing on a separation of parties by force (SOPF) scenario.
The exercise planning process started in 2008 at the Austrian Joint Forces Command (JFC). It had been initiated through a first directive issued by the Austrian Ministry of Defence and Sports (MODS). At this stage, the EURAD 10 was still scheduled as a "traditional” land exercise including force multipliers like electronic warfare assets, unmanned air vehicles and psychological operations (PSYOPS) elements.
At the beginning of 2009, Lieutenant General Höfler, the officer scheduling the exercise (OSE) and Major General Heidecker, the officer conducting the exercise (OCE), designated a Core Planning Team (CPT) with members from all branches to initiate the exercise planning process. It was working under the lead of a Head Core Planning Team (HCPT). The CPT had to carry out detailed planning, coordination and preparation of the exercise, in line with the exercise specification and the OSE planning guidance. Besides that, they also had to comply with the NATO Bi-SC 75-3 Exercise Directive, which requires a certain sequence of planning steps, the creation of specific products (e.g. Exercise Plan, Main Event List, Main Incident List) and the hosting of coordination conferences with multinational participation.
In spring 2010, first ideas of an integration of International Organizations (IOs) and Nongovernmental Organizations (NGOs) as well as training for students of the universities of Innsbruck and Salzburg were born. This new input created an additional challenge for the CPT, as formal approval had to be sought from the MODS, and the whole scenario had to be amended, making it thereby more and more complex.
After all, only the fact that the Austrian Chief of Defence Staff (CHODS), the MODS and the JFC made the EURAD 10 a clear priority event allowed the CPT to finalise the planning process and to complete all necessary documents like the operations plan (OPLAN), the operations order (OPORD), additional fragmentary orders (FRAGOs) and the main incident list (MIL) just in time before the start of the exercise (STARTEX).
The Execution Phase
Exercise Command and Control
For the execution of the EURAD 10, an Exercise Command was tailored around an Exercise Control (EXCON), headed by the Exercise Director (EXDIR), Brigadier General Pernitsch. A Situation Centre (SITCEN) was formed and tasked to constantly track, update and visualize all events of the exercise by means of various simulation systems (Phönix 2 Force Tracking System, Real-time Evaluation, Zauberflöte, Kreitfeuer etc.).
A Land Component Command (LCC) was installed to serve as a response cell for all Land Forces units, with the exception of the Opposing Forces (OPFOR). These units, including the Reserve Battalion (Inf Bn of Lower Austria), which was at the same time used as a training audience, were placed under an OPFOR CMD (provided by the 7th Inf Bde).
IO/NGO training (including pre-deployment training) was led by an HQ element from the 6th Inf Bde, specifically formed for that and attached to the OPFOR. In addition, an On Site Operations Centre (OSOCC), consisting of personnel from the Austrian CBRN Defence School and multinational CBRN specialists, was put in charge of the humanitarian relief operations part of the EURAD 10.
An Air Component Command (ACC), was providing command and control via an Air Operations Centre (AOC), which was tasked with Air Safety Zone surveillance and the provision of support to the Land Forces, if needed. MNB 4, (4th Mech Bde in lead) and reinforced with a battalion-size officer cadet unit from the Austrian Military Academy, various multinational elements, additional air assets, and a Brigade Aviation Element (BAE) was scheduled as the main training audience.
The Umpire HQ and the umpire organisation (3rd Mech Bde in lead) should serve as a link between the EXDIR and various training audiences.
Finally, essential elements for real life and host nation support (Mil Cmd of Lower Austria in lead), a Press and Information Centre and a Visitors Observers Bureau (PIC/VOB) as well as a Military Security Element (MilSec) were complementing the Exercise Command.
The Exercise Scenario
The exercise was based on a fictitious scenario taking place in the east of a fictitious continent with MAINLAND (MLD) and REDLAND (RLD as parties to the conflict.
MLD, a multiethnic democracy with a prosperous economy, was profiting from recent oil discoveries in the Gulf of Neusiedl, providing a major boost for its petro-chemical industry.
MLD’s northern neighboring state, RLD, was consequently following its long-term goal to destabilize MLD and to gain influence upon their oil and water resources. RLD’s open and aggressive support for the MLD-based RUBIAN minority was confronting MLD with serious challenges, as it was not willing to integrate the RUBIAN ethnic group into its political, social and economic life.
The conflict went out of control in March 2010, when RLD occupied the northern region of MLD in order to "free the suppressed RUBIANS”. On the intervention of the United Nations, a ceasefire agreement was signed in Munich. Due to the deteriorating humanitarian situation of both countries, the UN asked the EU to deploy a robust military force to the crisis area. In May 2010, the EU formally launched its military operation in MLD by adopting its Council decision for an EU-led Crisis Response Operation (CRO) in MLD. At the end of August 2010, the deployment of a Multinational EU-led Force, called "Mainland Force” (MFOR) was completed and an Air Safety Zone (ASZ) and a Maritime Safety Zone (MSZ) were established.
RLD and MLD agreed to withdraw their forces in coordination with the deployment of MFOR.
EURAD 10 was focussing on Phase 2 C (Seizure of the DMZ) of the MFOR Land Component Command Concept of Operations (LCC CONOPS).
The Situation at the Start of the Exercise (STARTEX) For STARTEX, the following situation had been created:
The MFOR advance was delayed by elements of the Rubian Forest District Liberation Army (FDLA), an irregular group trying to achieve a separation of the Forest District from MAINLAND. Support for these elements was coming from the area of Zwettl, where a municipality was providing shelter to Rubian Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) fleeing the southern parts of MAINLAND. Additional FDLA Forces were operating in the area of Thaures, which was a Rubian settlement. A REDLAND Battalion (223rd Bn) refused to withdraw from the Rubian sanctuary of Oberndorf because it was threatened by the Saphirian Our Homeland Party Armed Wing (SOHPAW), a non-statutory force operating from the enclave of Allentsteig.
The humanitarian situation within this area was deteriorating, and ethnic clashes between Rubians and Saphirians occurred on an almost daily basis. In addition, Rubian nationalistic ideas were spread among the population by various media trying to create opposition against MFOR.
Simultaneously, the UN launched a UN Fact Finding Mission (UN-FFM) comprised of various IOs and NGOs aiming to bring desperately needed humanitarian aid to the suffering people of both ethnicities.
The CBRN Units’ STARTEX Situation
In the southern region of Mainland (area of Wiener Neustadt), MFOR CBRN assets and additional CBRN assets from Switzerland were providing disaster relief after an earthquake and a technical breakdown in a nearby nuclear power plant - a scenario which was geographically separated from the other MFOR units operating in the northern part of Mainland (Waldviertel). German, Swiss and Austrian CBRN units were participating in this specific part of the exercise.
Increased CBRN threats in the northern part of Mainland, however, were later on the cause for the German and Austrian CBRN Forces to stop their disaster relief operations in the area of Wiener Neustadt and to take on the second goal of the exercise - the provision of combat support for brigade-strong manoeuvre forces.
The Land Exercise
MNB 4 - The Main Training Audience of the EURAD 10
This year’s largest exercise of the Austrian Armed Forces - the EURAD 2010 - was providing the 4th Mech Bde the possibility to practice and to prove its operational capabilities within an international environment. The challenge to form a multinational brigade out of eight nations and to give it the capability to pacify a crisis region was characterized by a multitude of innovations and ideas.
Pre-exercise Training for MNB 4
City of Horn, 13, Radetzkystrasse, September 13th, 2010: The integration of the international and national exercise participants in the 4th Multinational Brigade (MNB 4) is in full swing. Some 2,000 men and women in uniform from 5 different nations have already arrived at the brigade headquarters. After having drawn their weapons, ammunition and ID cards, there is only little time left to get familiar with the Mainland Exercise scenario. At the same time, the organic units of MNB 4 are already receiving their first force integration training (FIT). The Multinational Mainland Force (MFOR) is exercising for a real-life scenario, but that’s not all. The brigade headquarters is expected to finish its decision-making process within the following 72 hours!
The MNB 4 Deployment to MAINLAND
The tactics to be applied in contemporary crisis scenarios have changed over the last decades. A clearly defined opponent has been replaced by a multitude of interest groups. Large areas and modified timings require increased manoeuvring, the forming of temporary coalitions and a victory based on a minimum use of force.
Thus, it was the intent of MNB 4, by show of force and determination, to achieve a peaceful withdrawal of the Red Land Forces from the demilitarized zone (DMZ) towards the north. In order to reach this goal, the Opposing Forces and the Non-statutory Forces had to be isolated during a first phase. This manoeuvre was meant to set the preconditions for the negotiations to be held later on by the SJMC.
The Sector Joint Military Committee (SJMC) In order to avoid unnecessary losses, MNB 4 was manoeuvring skilfully to create preconditions favourable for subsequent negotiations aimed at a peaceful solution of the conflict - negotiations that were to be conducted by the parties to the conflict within a SJMC. The SJMC was holding two separate meetings, following different agendas:
The first meeting, chaired by the Cdr of MNB 4 (Brigadier-General Prader), was mainly about military issues, whereas the second meeting was dealing with the planning and coordination of humanitarian aid and was hosted by the Dep Cdr of MNB 4.
The EURAD 10 SJMC was trying to achieve the following goals:
- end of violence and compliance with the General Framework Agreement on Peace (GFAP);
- withdrawal of the Red Land Armed Forces;
- creation of preconditions necessary for humanitarian aid operations.
The Exercise ended with an escalation of the situation caused by an attack of the SOHPAW against the sanctuary of Oberndorf. MNB 4 neutralized the SOHPAW threat, took responsibility for the sanctuary and monitored the withdrawal of the RDL AF 223rd battalion.
In parallel to tactical C2I activities, MNB 4 was also showing considerable contribution to the distinguished visitors’ day (DV Day), which included the presentation of a non-combatant evacuation operation (NEO) from the cinema hall of Allentsteig.
Embedded in this presentation, the Austrian Armed Forces had the chance to present some of their recently fielded equipment, procedures and capabilities to an international audience:
- portable sniper firing positions and swing- wing grates for armoured vehicles - to be used during CRC operations;
- the airspace management of MNB 4;
- a "Quick Investigation Team” (QIT) for immediate investigation into any kind of incident;
- the "embedded journalist” concept.
MNB 4 was given the unique possibility to practice procedures and techniques in a multinational environment and to implement future-oriented innovations into its own operations command, control and intelligence (C2I) process.
The Air Exercise
The Air Force - an Essential Part of the EURAD 10
361 sorties, 681 flight hours, 20 fixed wing and 30 rotary wing aircraft, two German BO 105 helicopters for special recce, the Italian STRIX Unmanned Air Vehicle (UAV), the French DRAGON AIR UAV, one Aviation Task Force and a Ground-based Air Defence (GBAD) Battalion: These are only some few facts and figures on the EURAD 10 Air Component.
The Air Staff of the Austrian Joint Forces Command (JFC) had formed a Joint Forces Air Component Command headed by BG Gruber. It was the general himself who set up the following air exercise goals:
- train the enforcement of an Air Safety Zone (ASZ) by fast jet, turboprop and rotary wing aircraft;
- train airspace management within a small and complex High Density Airspace Control Zone (HIDAZ);
- ensure a realistic exercise environment concerning air matters and air support for MNB 4, and
- provide real-life air support for the other elements of the EURAD 10.
Another very important aim of the air exercise was to show the ability of coping with a nuclear power plant accident in the area of the TRITOL-Werk (a former industrial plant) near Wr. Neustadt.
Concerning the tactical and operational situation, the intent of the Joint Forces Air Component Commander (JFACC) was to enforce the air aspects of the GFAP and to establish the credibility of the MFOR by the demonstration of a robust air presence, surveillance and reconnaissance throughout the Joint Operations Area, the enforcement of the Air Safety Zone, the protection of the Danube crossing sites in the vicinity of Krems, and the provision of day-to-day air operations in support of MFOR ground forces, in order to contribute to a quick implementation of the GFAP.
During the exercise, the JFACC ensured centralized C2I via an Air Operations Centre which had been formed from the Air Staff of St. Johann im Pongau. Decentralized air operations control was provided by the Austrian Air Surveillance Brigade and the Air Support Brigade.
The Air Surveillance Brigade ensured radar coverage by means of stationary and mobile radar stations and protected an airbase with one of its short range air defence battalions, mainly composed of reservists. The brigade was also committing Eurofighters, Saab 105 jet planes and PC-7 propeller planes of the Austrian Aviation and Air Defence School.
The Air Support Brigade was performing tactical air transport and tactical air reconnaissance as well as slow mover interception missions, using its helicopter and light transportation aircraft fleet. The brigade also had deployed a so-called Aviation Task Force (AVTF) to the civilian airfield of Krems/Gneixendorf, where both civilian and military aircraft were operating from the same base. At this point, we want to thank the civilian flying community for supporting the Austrian Air Force during the EURAD 10! The AVTF was directly subordinated to MNB 4. In addition to that, the Air Support Brigade was ready to provide real-life medical evacuation helicopters for quick and efficient medical treatment of exercise participants. During the first week of the exercise, a helicopter detachment of the Air Support Brigade passed the second level of the Operational Capability Concept evaluation process, which constitutes an important step towards multinational interoperability.
Something really new for the Austrian Armed Forces was the participation of Italian and French UAVs and a civilian DA42 (DIAMOND) aircraft, equipped with modern airborne sensors. These assets were not only force multipliers for MNB 4, but they also gave the Austrians the chance to gain valuable experience in the field of airspace management and the operation of such aircraft within a civilian airspace environment.
The participation of UAVs turned out to be a great success and a real enhancement for interoperability. The last task for the EURAD 10 Aviation Task Force was the closing ceremony of Horn (23rd September): With a precise and professional formation flight executed in the growing nightfall, the Air Force made its fare-wells from all exercise participants and returned to its military home bases, enriched with lots of experiences.
The CBRN Exercise
International CBRN Defence Activities under one "Roof”
The cornerstone for cooperation between the military CBRN Forces of Germany, Austria and Switzerland was laid more than 15 years ago. Since then, collaboration in the sense of a common development and improvement in the fields of operation, training and doctrine has been maintained, also taking into account national particularities and directives.
The CBRN Goals for the EURAD 10
For a common exercise of the NBC units of Germany, Switzerland and Austria, two goals and, thus, two exercise phases had been defined:
- use of military forces after a natural disaster within the frame of an international humanitarian disaster relief operation, conducted according to UN guidelines, and
- employment of battalion-strong CBRN defence forces for combat support to be provided within a multinational operation.
To achieve these goals, the EURAD 10 scenario offered an ideal framework. For an optimal fulfilment of all these tasks, several workshops were held in order to develop individual scenarios. The real challenge during these workshops was indeed to give, by means of intelligent and threat-oriented incidents, all CBRN units enough reason to go for joint activities, but still leaving sufficient freedom of action to MFOR.
Integration of the CBRN Defence Forces
The Forces deployed for disaster relief were under the command of an On-site Operations Coordination Centre (OSOCC), run by German, Swiss and Austrian CBRN experts and augmented by representatives from civilian authorities as well as liaison officers from the Police, the Fire Brigade and the Medical Rescue Organizations of the Districts of Wiener Neustadt and Baden.
During the second exercise phase, parts of the OSOCC deployed to Allentsteig in order to reinforce the Exercise Command of the Austrian JFC with coordination and combat support capacities.
Training and Preparation
After thorough and detailed preparation, Austrian and German Exercise Command (EXCMD) personnel arrived at the Martinek Barracks of Baden on September 13th, 2010. The Austrian CBRN Defence Company (a professional high-readiness unit) had already been deployed there one week ago. One day later, the Swiss "Formation ad hoc” arrived, right after the Swiss EXCMD personnel and followed by the CBRN Defence Coy, the Special CBRN Defence Reaction Platoon and the CBRN Examination Element of the German Bundeswehr. Finally, the German CBRN/EOD Team joined the exercise staff, completing a formation of all in all 640 CBRN soldiers equipped with 180 vehicles, including the German armoured recce vehicle "Fuchs”, the Austrian all-protection recce vehicle "Dingo” and two German BO-105 helicopters.
Wednesday, September 15th, 2010 was used to reach operational readiness, set up headquarters and conduct maintenance and training. Especially the Swiss "Formation ad hoc” was filling up each minute with intense training activities in order to give their reserve soldiers the final readiness for the operation of their highly sophisticated CBRN reconnaissance and decontamination equipment.
The following day was determined for getting to know each other. After the presentation of individual skills and capabilities, the soldiers were given the chance to take a closer look at foreign equipment. Friday and Saturday were used for combined training.
The Start of Military Disaster Relief Operations
On Monday, September 20th, 2010, the exercise started at 0600 hrs. First incidents were making CBRN recce units leave their camps because of radioactive contamination emanating from the air and the soil. CBRN units were also used for international humanitarian and disaster relief outside the Waldviertel area, an operation that was coordinated by the UN OSOCC. All units were able to accomplish their assigned missions, i.e. the neutralization of CBRN threats caused by an earthquake, successfully and in compliance with UN guidelines. Their high degree of readiness was proven by numerous evacuation and recovery operations, CBRN reconnaissance and decontamination activities, sample-taking and cooperation with non-military relief organizations conducted in a very realistic scenario. A highlight amid these activities was the decontamination of patients together with the civilian hospital of Wiener Neustadt, the Austrian Rescue Organization and the Swiss Patient Decontamination Platoon.
CBRN-Units Support Land Forces
After an increase of the CBRN threat in the area of Waldviertel, MFOR HQ decided to move its CBRN defence units from Wiener Neustadt to the north of Mainland, where they should provide combat support to the manoeuvre brigades operating in this area. The Special CBRN Defence Reaction Platoon was the first unit to displace to Horn, where it was to support MNB 4. The bulk of the German and Austrian CBRN Defence Forces arrived there in the early morning hours of September 22nd, 2010. The Swiss "Formation at hoc” stayed in Baden, as it was not part of the MFOR Troops and continued providing disaster relief until they redeployed to their home country on Thursday, September 23rd, 2010.
For the combat support phase, the German CBRN Defense Company was subordinated to MNB 4. The rest of the CBRN-Forces was operating under direct command of the so-called CBRN Defence Cell, which had been formed especially for this phase of the exercise. Illegal terror laboratories dealing with the production of biological and chemical agents as well as attacks on artillery positions by means of chemical warhead missiles were among the incidents triggered for CBRN Defence units, which, in addition to that, also had to deal with terrorist attacks, the discharge of chemical substances resulting from a plane crash, and water purification for NGOs.
CBRN Operations Summary
The soldiers of the three nations (Germany, Switzerland and Austria) were able to carry out all assigned humanitarian disaster relief and combat support tasks to the full satisfaction of the umpire team and the Exercise Command. The incidents and the workload prepared for the exercising units were of high quality and very challenging; nevertheless, all men and women in uniform were showing exemplary discipline and comradeship during the whole exercise.
Even though different equipment and procedures were used for mission accomplishment, we can say that we had sufficient interoperability to fulfil both disaster relief and combat support tasks.
The EURAD 10 has shown that the CBRN Defence Forces of all three nations are well aware of the existing threats, that they are able to detect them because of their good training and equipment, and that they can reduce them to a minimum by the application of competent solutions. Thus, they are not only able to offer combat support, but also to provide sufficient aid for the relief of natural and manmade disasters.
The EURAD 10 Makes Students Fit for Humanitarian Operations
Prospective historians of the Innsbruck University and future political scientists of the University of Salzburg were taking part as humanitarian aid specialists or journalists in an EU-led operation, which was part of EURAD 10. Dr. Thomas Spielbüchler (University of Innsbruck) und Prof. Dr. Reinhard Heinisch (University of Salzburg) were in charge of the two course-type exercises, which were taking place at the military training ground of Allentsteig/Lower Austria.
Students from Innsbruck and Salzburg Practicing Together
The students were mentored by graduates of the "Master of Arts Program for Peace, Development, Security and International Conflict Transformation”, led by Prof. DDr. Wolfgang Dietrich from the University of Innsbruck. An experienced trainer team from the 6th Infantry Brigade briefed the MA graduates and students on the procedures and particularities pertaining to international military operations.
Besides the common preparations for this "UN Fact Finding Mission”, students not yet familiar with UN-led missions were also provided a basic preparatory training at the high-alpine military training ground of Wattener Lizum/Tyrol. Beyond that, they were as well confronted with the NGO (nongovernmental organizations) issue and received information on the initial situation within the crisis region, on basic rules of safety-related behavior, on communications and de-escalation techniques as well as on first aid.
EURAD 10 Provides Theoretical and Practical Training for Real-life Operations
The all in all 60 students were tasked to organize humanitarian aid while being caught in a volatile situation: The very realistic scenario was offering all kinds of problems and difficulties likely to be encountered in a crisis region during humanitarian relief operations. The students had to tackle basic tasks like reconnaissance, fact finding, planning, organization and the movement of an aid convoy across a potential combat area. In addition, part of them had to do the challenging job of a journalist, some even "embedded” within MFOR.
The students were expected to react properly to situations like roadblocks, minefields, raids, etc. - incidents that had been developed by the Austrian Joint Forces Command (JFC) during a comprehensive exercise planning process. However, they were given the possibility to stop their activities when the situation turned out to be too risky or they were not able to cope with it. We are glad to say that none of them made use of it.
One of the students’ highlights was certainly an evacuation operation taking place at the distinguished visitors and media day right in the center of Allentsteig: After a demonstration against the United Nations Fact Finding Mission (UNFFM), Task Force 18 was committed and dispersed the demonstration peacefully by means of CRC units. Afterwards, the UN employees were able to leave the buildings, protected by military police, and could get on trucks which brought them to a nearby airfield from where they were evacuated with Agusta Bell 212 helicopters to Sallingstadt, where they were finally accommodated in an NGO camp.
A Unique, Realistic Training Within an International Scenario
This exceptional project, in cooperation with the universities of Innsbruck and Salzburg, the Master Course for Peace Studies, and the Austrian Armed Forces can be seen as a real success. Considering the fact that besides 60 students also some 6,500 soldiers from 8 European countries were operating in the area of Allentsteig, we can say that such an intense cooperation between universities and the military had never happened before.
Another interesting thing was the integration of students into the peace study process, giving exercise-experienced graduates the chance to demonstrate their leadership capabilities within this special scenario.
The director of the Political Science Faculty of the University of Salzburg, Dr. Reinhard Heinisch, was seeing this exercise as "a unique chance to get a realistic impression of an international scenario, which could serve as a basis for the students’ decision to participate in real-life NGO operations”. As to decisions on future professional activities, Dr. Thomas Spielbücher from Institute of Contemporary History of the Innsbruck University stated that "such situations cannot be offered in an auditorium”.
"We’ve always had the feeling of being an important part of this exercise. We’ve never been left alone, as we somehow feared before, we were all the time challenged by the realistic incidents of the Austrian Armed Forces”, a student was summing up at the end of the EURAD 10.
The EURAD 10 Summary
Lt Gen HÖFLER, the officer scheduling the exercise (OSE), found the right words to summarize the EURAD 10:
"… In this exercise, the main effort was laid on the coordinated deployment of Land Forces, Air Force assets, and the cooperation with civilian authorities and organizations operating in crisis areas.
In the area of Wiener Neustadt, a disaster relief exercise was taking place which, at its end, brought all participants to the conviction that the cooperation between German, Swiss and Austrian CBRN and disaster relief units had significantly improved.
In and around Allentsteig, complex peace support operations like the separation of parties by force, the evacuation of civilian personnel and the establishment of a safe and secure environment were conducted very successfully.
The cooperation with university students from Innsbruck and Salzburg brought along, without any doubt, a win-win situation for both the civilians and the military.
In the framework of the European Advance 2010, we were also intensively practicing tactical and operational procedures as well as the comprehensive deployment of Air Force assets.
Our international partners were offered the possibility to contribute their wide-ranging capacities in each of the exercise scenarios, and thus, gave the participating nations and the Austrian Armed Forces the chance to gain experiences at all levels - experiences and lessons we will of course integrate in the future training of our soldiers.
We were able to achieve most of the scheduled exercise goals, and therefore the European Advance 2010 can be seen a success.”
Colonel Walter Ebenberger, Air Staff/Joint Forces Command (AIR EX) Colonel Christoph Konicek, NBC Defence School (CBRN EX) Major Mag. (FH) Markus Schilcher, JINFOOPS/Joint Forces Command (framework article) Major Dietmar Ragger, 7th Infantry Brigade (IO/NGO Training) Captain Mag. (FH) Christian Deutinger, 4th Mechanized Infantry Brigade (Land EX) Language support/editor: Colonel Mag. Ferdinand Lambauer, MSD, Joint Forces Command