Interesting and instructive

A big step towards having fully trained staffs. That is how many of the participants saw things when the final whistle blew for the exercise Illuminated Summer 07 on Thursday afternoon. - It has been extremely interesting and instructive, says Major Grete Överby from Norway.

Major Grete Överby from Norway Photo: Ulf K. Rask

For the members of staff of the Operation Headquarters, OHQ, and the Force Headquarters, (F)HQ, these have been days of intensive activity. The tempo has been high with many inputs from the exercise directing staff, but while still maintaining a realistic scenario.

"It has been a very good exercise and the staff members have done an excellent job," says the OHQ Chief of Staff, Group Captain Alistair Monkman, Royal Air Force.
"Everyone is now much better prepared and aware of what their tasks will be," he adds.

In the OHQ Joint Operations Centre, JOC, Major Grete Överby from Norway has been practising her duties as "watchkeeper", which means that she is one of a group in which many decisions are made in the name of the Operations Commander.

"It has been a very interesting exercise, especially since I am not working on operational tasks in my job as Commandant of Kongsvinger Fortress," says Grete Överby.

Major Överby thinks that the JOC staff members have been on a fast learning curve throughout the exercise and that each has gained a real understanding of their respective tasks and responsibilities.

In the view of the Exercise Director, Brigadier Jan-Gunnar Isberg, the training benefit for staff personnel can be rated as high to very high.

"This is probably because we succeeded in most respects in achieving realism in the background to the exercise, in dialogue between the staffs and in the scenario itself," says Brigadier Isberg.

Brigadier Isberg believes that the staff personnel, largely thanks to the support they have received from personnel in other areas, have also learned a great deal on a purely operational level.

Ulf K. Rask