January 31, 2012
Combined Endeavor 2012: let the planning begin
As reported by U.S. European Command's web-site, the week-long initial planning conference in Slovak Republic for the exercise Combined Endeavor 2012 (CE12) began yesterday with more than 250 participants attending to begin planning.
Combined Endeavor is the largest Command, Control, Communications and Computers (C4) interoperability event in the world: over than 1000 communications professionals from 40 NATO, Partnership for Peace (PfP), and strategic security partners gather at a main operating base, a virtual forward site, and at multiple home stations supporting live troop movements and training via HF and/or a satellite backlink to conduct a series of operationally focused interoperability tests. Combined Endeavor prepares nations to collaborate, plan, and execute complex C4 systems in crisis response and combat operations. The exercise builds partnerships for regional and global operations between nations using communication and network systems, using both NATO and commercial standards to increase interoperability between nations.
Combined Endeavor is a U.S. European Command (EUCOM)-sponsored multinational initiative. The exercise has grown to be one of the main vehicles to demonstrate and propagate new interoperability concepts between NATO and Partnership for Peace (PfP) nations. Its primary focus is interoperability testing of C4 systems and identification and documentation of problems hindering interoperability. The secondary focus is to develop long-range action plans that result in the achievement of increased levels of interoperability among NATO and the PfP nations.
In 2011, the Italian Army deployed the core network for Combined Endeavor, supporting more than 35 countries participating in the exercise, that was held in Grafenwoehr, Germany.
Lt. Col. Brian Heberlie, CE12’s exercise director, reiterated the importance of CE at the opening ceremony of the meeting in the Slovak Republic. “The planning is always the hardest part and, if we are successful here, we’ll have another challenging and successful exercise next fall. It’s important to remember as we start the work this week that Combined Endeavor is not only about conducting the technical planning and testing, but, just as importantly, the creation of new partnerships and friendships while strengthening those that already exist. It is the human interoperability piece that truly ensures the work will get done.”
References: U.S. European Command (1), GlobalSecurity.org (2), Combined Endeavor (3), dvids (4)