International collaboration reinforces the military search ability

From 16 th of September to 11 th of October an Advanced Search Advisor Course were facilitated by Göta Engineer Regiment. The course is a part of a project that European Defence Agency (EDA) started and is a collaboration between several countries to increase the ability of military search advisors.

Photo: Martina Gustafsson/Swedish Armed Forces
Photo: Martina Gustafsson/Swedish Armed Forces

The course has been supported by a contractor with the expertise and experience required to run this type of course. Twelve officers and non-commissioned officers from Sweden, Austria, Belgium, Republic of Ireland, Portugal, Spain and the Netherlands have participated in the first EDA Advanced Search Advisor Course.

The focus on the four-week course was on the planning and advising of this specialist role and the course would equip specialist military personnel with the knowledge and skills required to advise, plan and conduct search tasks in a high threat environment and where a high level of assurance is required. A further objective is to enhance participating member states capability to conduct Advanced Search Advisor courses and training themselves within each member country, or collaboratively.

"In many countries the Advanced Search Advisor is a very specialized ability and when we conduct courses and exercises like this we all develop within our expertise", says Sven Johansson who has been responsible for the course.

The Search Advisor is a key role when conducting search operations, or any other operation where there is a military search capability requirement. They have different training depending on which type of search response is required. Where there is a need for a high level of assurance, or where there is a specific threat or high-risk level involved, the mission usually requires an Advanced Search Advisor (ASA). As a distinguished specialist in all aspects of search and its procedures they support the mission commander during planning and execution of the search task. This involves amongst other things forming a threat assessment, devising a detailed plan of the search, conduct liaison and planning with all other agencies and capabilities involved in the mission.

The Advanced Search Advisor undergoes a thorough and meticulous training programme. This in order to ensure that the advisor has the knowledge and capability to carry out the role in any given scenario or situation, their advice can, and will have a direct impact on the outcome of the mission. The number of trained Advanced Search Advisors vary depending on each countries requirements and the number of available search units. For many countries the Advanced Serach Advisor is a position that is very challenging and difficult to train and maintain.

"It has been very rewarding and I feel that we have achieved our purpose with the course", Sven Johansson says as a conclusion.