CIOR’s President Participates in Blue Beret Security Conference

CIOR’s President Participates in Blue Beret Security Conference

Brno, Czech Republic hosted the eighth International United Nations (UN) Missions Service Members meeting earlier this month. The conference was organized by a Czech Republic association Czechoslovak Legionnaire, a member of the Soldiers of Peace International Association/Association Internationale des Soldats de la Paix (AISP-SPIA), a World Blue Beret Association.

The meeting took place under the auspices of the Czech Republic Minister of Defense (MoD), Martin Stropnický, Governor of the Southern Moravian Region Michal Hašek, and Commander of the Defense University in Brno. Brigadier General Bohuslav Přikryl. The conference was attended by the President of AISP–SPIA (www.aisp.fr), Laurent Attar Bayour (FRA), along with many distinguished guests from the Ministry of Defense, and Parliament, of the Czech Republic.

For the first time, the President of the World Veterans Federation (WVF), Dan-Viggo Bergtun of Norway, attended. The WVF is an international non-profit, non-governmental organization (NGO), which is independent from governments, and is non-political and non-sectarian. It does not discriminate on the basis of racial, ethnic, religious, gender or national identities, nor does it allow its members to do so. It is a federation of 172 veteran organizations from 121 countries representing some 45 million veterans worldwide (http://www.wvf-fmac.org).

The WVF was established in Paris, France in 1950. The founding members were veteran’s organizations from 8 countries: Belgium; France; Italy; Luxembourg; Netherlands; Turkey; USA; and Yugoslavia. Its original name was “The International Federation of War Veterans Organization.” The WVF maintains its consultative status with the United Nations since 1951 and was conferred the title of “Peace Messenger” in 1987.

Among the distinguished guests were: CIOR’s President, Lieutenant Colonel Arnošt Líbezný: President SPIA Poland, and Vice-President AISP/SPIA C.E. Europe and Chairman of Zrzeszenie Weteranow Dzialan Poza Granicami Panstv, Colonel Jerzy Banach; and President SPIA Slovakia, Colonel Pavel Marko.

During the event, a working session was conducted between Lieutenant Colonel Libezny, and Dan-Viggo Bergtun. Both presidents discussed the possibilities of closer cooperation, as they both believe it will be mutually beneficial to each of their organizations, especially in light of the current security situation worldwide.

South Africa: A contributor to NATO’s Peace Keeping, and Maritime Interdiction (Anti-Piracy), Operations, welcomes the Interallied Confederation of Reserve Officers (CIOR)

South Africa: A contributor to NATO’s Peace Keeping, and Maritime Interdiction (Anti-Piracy), Operations, welcomes the Interallied Confederation of Reserve Officers (CIOR)

Interallied Confederation of Reserve Officers Secretary General (CIOR SG) 1st LT Jaroslav Hajecek Hosted by the Reserve Forces Council (RFC) of South African Armed Forces:

1st LT Hajecek was warmly welcomed by Major General Keith M. Mokoape (pictured below making presentation to CIOR’s SG), Brigadier General John Del Monte, and the RFC leadership committee, during his historic visit to the African continent.

In his address to the RFC leadership Jaroslav conveyed greetings from the CIOR President and thanked South Africa for their very active involvement in CIOR and the many contributions that South Africa makes to the CIOR community.

1st LT Havacek discussed further cooperation on education and professional development of Reservists in Africa, and within CIOR, and how to expand CIOR’s influence on the continent.

CIOR’s expertise on Reserve matters is viewed extremely positively in South Africa. The continued extensive participation of the South African Delegation in the Young Reserve Officer (YRO), and Military Competition (MILCOMP), programs has highlighted the value-added contribution this Delegation provides.

The CIOR SG then expressed the Presidency’s sincere appreciation for the warm welcome and hospitality of the South African Reserve Forces Council, and is looking forward to close cooperation in the future.

CIOR & CIOMR Presidencies Transition as Resilience Dominates Dialogue

CIOR & CIOMR Presidencies Transition as Resilience Dominates Dialogue

The 69th Summer Congress of the Interallied Confederation of Reserve Officers (CIOR), and the Interallied Confederation of Medical Reserve Officers (CIOMR), hosted this year by the Federacion de Organizaciones de Reservistas de Espana (FORE) in the beautiful capital city of Madrid. One of the main issues covered during the Summer Congress was “Resilience.” More than 300 Reserve officers, from throughout the NATO landscape, participated. They exchanged ideas on their international experiences and developed common strategies.

Reserve officers play a significant role in the implementation of NATO’s resilience concept. For that reason, the focus of the CIOR Symposium, taking place the first day of the congress, was “Building resilience at home and abroad.” Resilience lessons learned, and resilience programs of different countries, cities, and agencies, were presented. Due to recent terrorist attacks, the need for resilience has become essential. This presents NATO, and particularly the military, with new challenges requiring new concepts. The concept of resilience has gained special attention, as it enables society to keep public order, and individuals to properly respond to a terrorist attack. At a time when governments might not be able to deal with certain types of threats on their own, the need for employment of citizens is essential – and use of the citizen/soldier crucial.

CIOMR was a key player in this discussion as an individual’s resilience (mentally and physically) is vital to their ability to respond to crisis – especially a terrorist attack. In addition, there were numerous scientific presentations, throughout their week of sessions.

A Young Reserve Officers Workshop (YROW) was convened during the Congress. 60 young reserve officers from throughout the NATO landscape came together to prepare for possible assignment to international missions with NATO.
CIOR’s military competition (MILCOMP) was also conducted during the Congress. This pentathlon is considered one of the most difficult and multifaceted military competitions that exist. It is distinguished by the combination of physical and psychological strain. Reserve officers from all CIOR member and associate nations competed in the military sports disciplines of the obstacle course, pistol and rifle shooting, swimming, orienteering, and with a special Combat Casualty Care (CCC) element. This year, the German teams repeated as the top competitors.

During the Congress, the CIOR Council, Defense Attitudes and Security Issues Committee (DEFSEC), Language Academy (CLA), Legal Affairs Committee, Partnership for Peace and Outreach Committee (PfP & O), Public Affairs Committee (PAC), and Seminar Committee, also convened and conducted the affairs of the Confederation.

Then the CIOMR President MajGen Robert Kasulke, USA, passed the CIOMR flag to Col Kevin Davies, UK, who assumed the role of CIOMR President.

At the “Closing Ceremony” on Saturday evening, the Bulgarian CIOR President, LtCol Dimitar Popov, passed the CIOR flag to his Czech Republic colleague, LtCol Arnost Libezny, CIOR’s new President.

In the words of MajGen Evan “Curly” Hultman, USA, CIOR’s “President for Life”, attending his 38th Summer Congress, “This CIOR/CIOMR Congress was one of the most productive of recent years. The Spanish leadership, on such short notice, produced outstanding events for the diverse attendees from over 20 nations. We Reserve officers found the programming both very interesting and most challenging.

Author:
Florian Busch-Janser

Photos by:
Captain Henry E. Plimack
USCGR (Ret)

Building Resilience at Home and Abroad: The Role of Reservists

Building Resilience at Home and Abroad: The Role of Reservists

Recent major changes in our security environment have made mandatory the study of new concepts. New buzzwords have appeared that try to define, or at least reveal, a shift of paradigm. Among those, “resilience” has gained interest, as it aims at helping individuals, systems and societies, to recover after any kind of unprecedented, unpredictable and catastrophic shock. In an era where the level of threats and risks questions the ability of stakeholders, government and international organizations to protect their population, building and maintaining resilience has become a key issue.

The Symposium of the Interallied Confederation of Reserve Officers (CIOR), held in Madrid on August 2nd, 2016, pursued a dual objective: not only to inform the over 230 participants, but also help them to understand their potential role.

Opened by LtCol Dimitar Popov (BUL A), President of CIOR, and under the direction of Dr. Guillaume Lasconjarias of the NATO Defense College (Rome, Italy), the Symposium was divided into three sessions.

The first panel was meant to serve as an overview of the current geopolitical changes and the evolution of threats. The brilliant demonstration of Col Sanchez de Rojas (CESEDEN – SPA) offered a grim, nonetheless realistic, image of today’s security and operating environment. However, Maj Estevez of the Spanish MILREP (SPA A) insisted on the continuous ability of NATO to adapt and offered a view as much as an update on the outcomes of the Alliance’s Warsaw Summit that was held in Poland early July.

Without negating the challenges NATO faces, these presentations highlighted how NATO’s members and partners still are relevant and can run the gauntlet vis-à-vis any potential adversaries or competitors defending its core values through a revised focus on collective defense and Article 5 of the Washington Treaty.

This introduction set the stage for the participants, helping them to understand in which environment they would have to operate – as much as the environment in which they live. Dr Lasconjarias, followed by Col Segovia (SPA A), both tried to define not just what resilience meant in the academic field but shared their thoughts on what resilience is today. Defining the concept as being in the same time the ability to recover, to adapt and to mitigate after a shock. They also discussed why
NATO takes this concept seriously.

From a purely military perspective, resilience is a key requirement as it aims at limiting the vulnerability of infrastructures, systems and individuals, and therefore, enabling the pursuit of military operations. Case studies followed, introduced by LtCol Pulido (SPA A), who explained the particular case of cyber resilience, a vital asset in our connected world.

Mark Cumo (USA CIV), from the Counter-IED Centre of Excellence in Madrid, emphasized how even a technical and tactical issue like IED has to be addressed in a comprehensive way.

Finally, LtCol Bruno (USAF, and CIOMR) recalled that resilience starts with individuals and gave the example of how the US Armed forces have developed a wide array of programs to help their soldiers in being more resilient and thus, more resistant.

The afternoon, under the chairmanship of Navy Captain (R) Richard Roll (FRA N), past President, envisioned resilience from the civilian perspective, trying to answer a key question about how civilian entities would also get the best use of reservists in their unique ability to be “twice a citizen.” An impressive panel of experts was convened.

Benny Vaknin (ISR), former mayor of Ashkelon, shared his lessons learned in dealing with an almost permanent threat, and which tools and skills are critically needed to steer a city and lead a community.

Nicolas Wit, of Citées Unies France, insisted on how local governments can already share their expertise and tools to be better prepared, a view that Chris Geldart, of Washington, DC’s Homeland Security and Emergency Management Agency totally shared.

At an international level, Ms Lucia Fernandez Suarez gave the example of the World Food Programme and its unique program to develop food security through resilience. The dimension of protecting systems and critical infrastructures was not forgotten and Francisco Cubillo illustrated how Spain focuses on water security through the protection of Canal Isabel II, seen as a strategic asset.

Professor Ilan Juran, former Dean of New York University, and Chairman of W-Smart, an association of utilities promoting resiliency in the field of water and energy, finished in observing that resilience can only work if people take it seriously and train and educate themselves to be prepared.

Dr Antoni Esteve, head of FarmaIndustria and Anna Bolletbo, president of the International Foundation Olof Palme, insisted on the necessary awareness and the ties and links that have to be built between different actors, in a time where defense can only be seen as a comprehensive and inclusive whole-of-government approach, which needs to also take stock of the skills and competencies present in the private sector.

This, once again, confirms that resilience is more than a buzzword – it is an attitude, a behavior, and a relationship. In this field it seems now more than ever, important to take a closer look at how reservists, due to their unique position in bridging the gap between military and civilian spheres, can help safeguard our open societies and democracies.

Author:
Dr. Guillaume Lasconjarias
NATO Defense College

Photos by:
Captain Henry E. Plimack
USCGR (Ret)

CIOR CIMEX 2016 – A Success in Madrid

CIOR CIMEX 2016 - A Success in Madri

For the fifth year, the CIOR Civil-Military Cooperation (CIMIC) Committee has organised a CIMEX (CIMIC exercise) prior to the CIOR Summer Congress. This year it was held at the Military Engineering Academy in Hoyo near Madrid.

The overriding objectives of CIMEX are: “to encourage liaison, networking and information sharing, and promote best practice within the international CIOR CIMIC community…in order to better understand our international partners, and work more effectively together.”

CIMEX 2016 took place from July 30th through August 2nd. Similar to previous years, it consisted of two parts:
-the first was a series of presentations
-the second was a desktop exercise, during which participants were put into multi-national syndicates and given a task from which they had to produce a solution.

26 participants and speakers from 11 countries took part in CIMEX 2016. The countries participating were: Denmark, France, Germany, Hungary, Netherlands, Poland, South Africa, Spain, Switzerland, UK, and the US.

The theme for CIMEX 16 was Refugee Crisis and had a specific objective to: “achieve a common understanding of the main factors to be considered in the Civilian/Military response to a Refugee Crisis”. Supporting presentations were given by speakers from NATO, US Civil Affairs, US Army Africa, CIOR Legal Committee, Hungary, Spain, and the US Coast Guard.

Presentation subjects included: The World Today; Definitions of Refugee Crisis and Mass Migration; What is CIMIC; Perspectives & Developments in Resilience and Capacity Building; Actors in the Operational Space; Stabilisation Operations; Law of Armed Conflict; Migration Issues in Africa, Spain and south Hungarian border; Maritime Migration.

The desktop exercise was based on a fictional refugee crisis scenario, arising from a complex mix of conflict, political and natural disaster factors. Syndicates had to consider two questions: Firstly: how to conduct a CIMIC assessment of the situation and describe the processes and tools to be used. Secondly: identify how and who to engage with in the civil environment, in order to support the Commander’s mission.
The desktop exercise was facilitated by an experienced former UK Civil Affairs officer who is now an international Security and Defence Consultant with a mix of military, academic and diplomatic experience.
Syndicate solutions were presented to Maj Gen Greg SMITH (UK) and Brig Gen Mike SILVA (US).

A post exercise evaluation of participant’s feedback showed that CIMEX achieved its generic objectives and also its specific objectives in relation to Refugee Crisis. Participants reported that their level of knowledge of the subject had improved as a result of their participation in this CIMEX.

The CIMIC Committee continues to see CIMEX as a cost effective way of getting international CIMIC organisations and Reservists together to explore areas of developing common interest. The Committee will continue to strive towards validation and certification of CIMEX by an internationally recognised body.

The Committee has started planning for CIMEX 2017. The theme identified is Refugee Crisis, Part II, with a focus on: The Changing Role of CIMIC, Resilience, and Internal Defence. Further work on this will carried out at CIOR’s Winter Meeting in NATO HQ Brussels, February 2017. At that time the CIOR Council is expected to confirm the location for Summer Congress and CIMEX 2017.

Lt Col Peter CARROLL (UK), the outgoing chairman for the past three and a half years, handed over the committee to Col Vanessa DORNHOEFER (US). Both have been working closely together over the past months in order to facilitate a smooth transition. The CIMIC Committee has a strong core team, and under the new leadership of Col DORNHOEFER and will take CIMEX to the next level in terms of supporting the objectives of CIOR. Details of CIMEX 2017 will be communicated in due course.

Author: Lt Col Peter Carroll
peter.carroll@smurfitkappa.co.uk
+44 (0) 7711 002767

CIOR Annual Report 2015-16

INTERALLIED CONFEDERATION OF RESERVE OFFICERS (CIOR)

ANNUAL REPORT

JULY 2015-JULY 2016

INTERALLIED CONFEDERATION OF RESERVE OFFICERS (CIOR)
ANNUAL REPORT
JULY 2015-JULY 2016

CIOR Annual Report 2015-16 is attached here below.

CIOR_ANNUAL_REPORT_2015-16.pdf

2016 Winter Seminar on IS

2016 Winter Seminar on IS

To read more you can visit the Seminar Committees new website.

Sunday afternoon:
The CIOR 2016 Winter Seminar commenced today. LtCol Hans Garrels, Chairman of the CIOR Seminar Committee, welcomed the speakers, panel members and other attendees. The Winter Seminar is co-sponsored by the Konrad Adenauer Stiftung (KAS) and the Interallied Confederation of Reserve Officers (CIOR). Messieurs Martin Hoch and Rüdiger Gottzein also adressed the Seminar attendess, and welcomed them on behalf of the KAS.

An overview by the panel members, and some of the speakers, disclosed the different subjects in their presentations. The theme of this Winter Seminar is IS – Understanding the threat and its implications. All attendees were given the opportunity to ask their questions on what subjects should be covered in the coming days’ lectures.

In contrast to prior Seminars, midway through the Seminar their will be workshops for the attendees. This interactive element was initiated by LtCol Garrels to address the feedback from the 2015 Winter Seminar – the need for attendees to not just sit an listen, and ask questions – but to actually attempt to use the information provided.

All Winter Seminar presentations are governed by Chatham House rules, preventing quotes from the speakers. However, we will keep you posted with news and photos on these timely and important discussions.

Sunday evening:
Presentation Rüdiger Gottzein about the Konrad Adenauer Stiftung.
The Konrad Adenauer Stiftung is a political foundation with a yearly budget of more then 150 million euro. The main goal of the Konrad Adenauer Stiftung is: Democracy!
The Konrad Adenauer Stiftung is a think-tank and consultancy agency, they organise conferences, events and support intellectually gifted young people. The archive christian democratic politics researches and studies the history of Christian Democracy in Germany and Europe. More on the Konrad Adenauer Stiftung is to be read at their website: http://www.kas.de/wf/en/

Monday morning:
From 9.00 am – 11.00 Aymenn Jawad Al-Tamimi from the United Kingdom gives his presentation titled: “IS historical introduction”. Mr Al-Tamimi provides a chronological overview of the origins of IS, it’s leaders and their predecessors.

Mr Al-Tamimi’s presentation is ready to be downloaded at the bottom of this page.

From 11.00 – 12.30 Huib Wursten from The Netherlands talks about the subject of “IS – cultural and sociological20160201_111452-crop.jpg aspects”. Many sides of religious and cultural behaviour are highlighted. Mr. Wursten states that all differences between groups are more of a cultural then a religious nature.

Mr. Wurstens presentation will be in the bottom of the page as soon as we get it.

Monday afternoon:
Ms Juliette Bird from 14.00 – 15.30 presents legal issues related to NATO and IS under the theme “IS – legal aspects”. Ms. Bird discusses issues such as the concept of a State, UN and NATO principles and article 3 and 5 related to recent events.

Just before the snackbreak Saban Kardas, from 16.00 – 17.30 gives the audience a presentation about “Future of the Alliance, Turkey, US and EU relations, Kurdish issue”. The speaker, from a Turkish view explains the issues Turkey has with terrorists on the south border.

Between snackbreak and dinner, from 18.00 – 19.30, Andrew Mumford has the honour to fill the last timeslot. In his own words: “I’m aware of the fact that I am the only thing between you and a good glass of wine”. Mumforts presentation is called “IS military and tactical perspective”. His presentation covers the issue of proxy warfare, and one of his challenging statements is: ‘future wars fought by Western militaries are more likely to be against third party proxies than state forces’.

Tuesday morning:
Yesterday IS was approached from cultural, legal and sociological side. This morning, from 09.00 – 10.30, Prof. Solomon Hussein puts the emphasis on religious aspects of IS. Prof. Husseins presentation is on the bottom of this page. Mr. Hussein is a muslim himself and is quite open about the measures of the West against IS and radicalisation: “too little, too late”.

From 11.00 – 12.30 Gen. (ret) Fabio Mini talks about “IS – economical and financial aspects”. His point is that IS is not the omnipotent, organised organisation we seem to think it is. “We really don’t know what IS is”. In the generals presentation we see an estimate of all incoming dollars on an annual basis.

Tuesday afternoon:
This afternoon Mr. Jaeger gives a presentation about “Putin’s intentions in Syria”. A very interesting story that makes the attendees think of the 2015 Seminar, in which Russia played a big role. Mr. Jaeger’s presentation is at the bottom of this page.

Wednesday morning:
This morning LtCol Rudi talks about organisational and financial aspects of IS. After this presentation it is time for former ambassador Philippe Welti to wrap up the Seminar. Rudiger Gottzein and Martin Hoch say thanks to the speakers and Hans Garrels closes the Seminar thanking his committee-members for their tremendous work in the past month’s.

Maybe you want to know a little more about the given presentations. If that’s the case, let us know by e-mail.

Secretary General’s Annual Report – 2015

Secretary General’s Annual Report - 2015

Mr. Stoltenberg welcomed Allies’ progress on defence spending, noting that “after many years of substantial reductions in defence spending, the cuts have now practically stopped among European Allies and Canada. And in 2015, defence cuts were close to zero.” He emphasised that more needs to be done to increase defence investments in the face of major security challenges.

For the complete article including a PDF copy of the report visit http://nato.int/cps/en/natohq/news_127503.htm

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