“Illuminated Summer” initiated

There are 117 days left until the Nordic Battlegroup enters its standby period on 1 January next year and now begin the exercises that will enable the battlegroup to line up like on a string of pearls.

The Nordic Battlegroup’s Chief Liaison Officer, Jan Ödman, carries the NBG’s banner at the inauguration of "Illuminated Summer". Photo: Rick Forsling / Swedish Armed Forces

A few weeks ago, a so-called “Tactical Exercise Without Troops” was carried out and on Monday, “Illuminated Summer” was initiated at the Armed Forces Command and Control Regiment in Enköping. This is an exercise of which the aim is to assess the Nordic Battlegroup’s Force Headquarters, (F)HQ, prior to the standby period:
“It is, in many ways, by far the most important exercise for us,” says Colonel Mikael Frisell, who is Chief of Staff for the (F)HQ.

“Illuminated Summer” is a staff exercise and the scenario is the scenario that will be used during all the autumn’s exercises for the entire Nordic Battlegroup. In the execution of the “Illuminated Summer” exercise, the NBG has recently started to arrive in the form of personnel and materiel at an area of deployment in order to start solving its task.

The (F)HQ’s role during the exercise is to lead the battlegroup’s operations in the area of deployment exactly as if it was a real-life situation:
“We’ve worked out an operational plan for this as part of our training and now this is the first time that we get the chance to test it,” says Mikael Frisell. However, the focus is mainly on practising leadership in the initial phase of an operation.

In addition to testing whether the plan works and testing other important procedures, the (F)HQ's efforts will also be assessed:
“We have a number of criteria that must be fulfilled in order for Sweden, as the country responsible, to be able to say “OK, this headquarters is capable of doing what is required” for the EU, so it’s really quite exciting,” states Mikael Frisell.