Nearly1000 personnel assigned to Allied Rapid Reaction Corps (ARRC) recently completed a 5-day training exercise conducted at Beacon Barracks, a Ministry of Defence (MoD) military facility just outside of
Entitled ‘ARRCADE Returner 2,’ this training event was only one of several scheduled multinational, comprehensive exercises scheduled for the high-readiness headquarters designed to prepare the headquarters personnel for potential short-notice call-up and deployment as part of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Response Force (NRF) next year.
BG Bryan Owens, LTG Marquis Hainse and Major General
Julian Free CBE walk past tents housing the various sections
that make up the main effort of the ARRC staff during
EX ARRCADE RETURNER.
"The NRF is a "joint” force, which means that it is not only land-based (army), but also composed of air, maritime, special forces and other components,” said HQ ARRC Spokesman Lieutenant Colonel (Lt Col) Ian Woodbridge. "Overall, the force will be commanded by a HQ based in
According to Lt Col Woodbridge, the size of the NRF depends upon what NATO, or other partner nations are willing and able to offer at any one time, but in terms of manpower averages in excess of 20,000 soldiers, sailors and airmen at any one time.
"The NRF provides the NATO Alliance with a military crisis management tool,” continued Lt Col Woodbridge. "Primarily, it sends a message of collective determination to deal with a crisis by a group of democratic nations, operating across borders in cooperation with one another. Secondly, the NRF could deploy to deal with the situation if it is politically agreed that military forces are required.”
The types of crises the ARRC could become involved in span from collective defence of the NATO nations under Article 5 of the Washington Treaty, to peace-keeping operations such as those conducted in the Balkans, to intervening under a UN mandate to countries such as in Kosovo or Libya, or even dealing with natural disasters when a nation requests assistance.
Illustrating both the multinational and multi-service nature of today’s NATO stand-by forces and the importance NATO places on the ARRC’s training, both NATO’s Joint Forces Command – Naples Deputy Commander, Lieutenant General Marqui Hainse and the
UK’s Joint Force Air Component Commander, Air Commodore Phil Beach visited the ARRC during their training in
Private Remson Dinesh cooks in the main
field kitchen on Ex ARRCADE Returner 2.
In the event that HQ ARRC deploys on operations with the NRF next year, Hainse may well become the joint commander, and Beach may command the NRF air component.
Hainse and Beach spent the day touring the exercise sight, visiting approximately 850 troops and reviewing the overall training event being conducted by ARRC leadership and personnel.
Supporting the HQ ARRC personnel in Staffordshire were approximately 500 support personnel from the ARRC Support Battalion and 1st Signal Brigade, both based with the ARRC at Imjin Barracks in Gloucestershire, as well as communications personnel assigned to Stafford-based 22nd Signal Regiment. Providing mission essential communications, logistics and dining services, all units deployed to the exercise site well in advance of the headquarters personnel to ensure that the exercise would be a success; many were on site for a week or more prior to the arrival of the headquarters personnel from Imjin.
During the exercise, ARRC personnel trained on a multitude of tasks, procedures and processes critical
to improve their overall readiness to deploy anywhere in the world on a wide variety of potential missions. Utilizing the ‘crawl, walk, run’ approach, the headquarters’ multinational personnel used this exercise to both evaluate their current doctrine and standing operating practices, as well as develop and test out new methods to achieve success in any future missions the unit may be required to complete.
An elevated view inside the Allied Rapid Reaction
Corps (ARRC) deployable Headquarters, during
Exercise ARRCADE RETURNER 2, in Stafford.
Future ARRC exercises this fall will see a NATO evaluation team attending, observing the unit’s personnel in order to decide whether or not the headquarters is ready to assume their role as the Land Component Command in any future call-up of a NRF in 2013.
"Exercise ARRCADE Returner 2 has marked the start of a busy period as we prepare to take over the NRF Land Component mission in 2013,” said ARRC Chief of Staff Major General Julian Free. "It’s been an excellent exercise; both demanding and thought-provoking. The staff have worked extremely hard…across the entire headquarters. We are now in great shape and ready to tackle the remainder of our NRF training.”