News: German support soldiers perform logistic juggling act
By Spc. Melissa Shaw
Combined Endeavor 2008 Public Affairs
BAUMHOLDER, Germany - Taking care of more than 1,300 people from the more than 40 nations participating in Combined Endeavor 2008 (CE 08) is no easy logistics feat even after 10 years for the 250 soldiers of German joint support services at Lager Aulenbach, a German training camp here.
Participating nations use CE 08 to plan, prepare and practice a full range of communications, equipment, policies and procedures prior to deploying for NATO missions and emerging real world crisis.
Just as the exercise testing requires extensive planning, so does fulfilling the logistical needs of the more than 40 participating nations and the host country.
Successfully providing housing, meals and other services, as the host nation, to make the exercise run smoothly starts with careful planning. The German support planners use the experience gained during previous years to ensure all of the logistics support was appropriately planned for and then, executed, said German Lt. Col. Frank Rustenbach, the host nation site support director, said. Planning for each year's exercise occurs during four planning conferences throughout the year.
Each year, many of the logistics challenges of CE have remained the same, while each year has provided some unique challenges requiring a tremendous amount of teamwork between the host nations and the participating nations to coordinate and execute the plans successfully.
One such challenge this year was the destruction of one of the main work tents during a snowstorm the first weekend of April, just weeks before the exercise was scheduled to begin.
Once the damage was discovered, it was decided by the company that owned the tent to send out a representative to re-work the entire structure by piecing together a 20 foot by 50 foot workspace instead of two 20 foot by 20 foot tents. Within one week everything was back on track, Capt. Torsten Troger, German support personnel commander said.
"In their typical 'can do' fashion, the German support service team responded quickly to the challenge and solved the problem, enabling us to continue on with the exercise as scheduled," said U.S. Army Lt. Col. James E. Pugh, Combined Endeavor 2008 exercise director.
From providing housing, meals, workspaces and almost anything the participants and their visitors could ask for, the German joint support services team delivers. "They keep do a great job of keeping the site running smoothly so that exercise participants can focus on the testing at CE," said Pugh. "We appreciate their hospitality and all of their efforts over the past 10 years. Next year's host nation, Bosnia Herzegovina, has some pretty big shoes to fill."
Date Posted:05.19.2008 10:28
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