By Seaman Shanika L. Futrell
Fleet Public Affairs Center Atlantic
NORFOLK, Va. – Commander Navy Installations Command coordinated with Naval Station Norfolk ashore and afloat to hold a Citadel Protect '08 Antiterrorism ashore/afloat exercise on Oct. 15-16, 2008.
Citadel Protect '08, AT ashore/afloat Concept of Operations exercise gave the training team a chance to eliminate the ashore/afloat seam by achieving unity within the operational environment.
"This exercise is designed to look at the gaps that exist and try to eliminate them," said Steve Murley, CNIC trainer.
The exercise only focused on the first step to a threat, which included the guided-missile destroyers USS Gonzalez, USS Bulkeley and security from the Sewells Point Police precinct. The objective of the exercise was to assess AT Navy Mission Essential Tasks, and a broad spectrum of primary capabilities such as force integration and safety, and to introduce the position of the Antiterrorism Tactical Watch Officer.
ATTWO plays a very important role with AT NMETS. ATTWO is the eyes and the voice which actively tells other posts what to do and how to react to a situation through different ways of communication.
"The ships and everyone who is involved have a Blackberry phone, force protection radios, or beepers so that the ATTWO and those involved can have a direct line of communication so that we can together fight the battle for antiterrorism," said Lt. j.g. Shane Jester, Sewells Point Police precinct ATTWO. "Although we are only doing the first stage, there will be more training to follow in the future, but we have to take the process one step at a time so the Navy does not leave any gaps that will make us vulnerable."
Citadel Protect '08, AT Afloat/Ashore Concept Operations exercise is the first held on Naval Station Norfolk led by CNIC.
"These exercises have been held overseas in Bahrain, but this is the first formalized integration between the waterfront and shore installation working together here at NAVSTA," said Cmdr. Rick Cheeseman, commanding officer of USS Bulkeley.
The Chief of Naval Operations implemented a Sea Power 21 vision paper that directs the Navy to prescribe strategies-to-concepts-to-capabilities continuum that will result in greatly enhanced power, protection, and operational freedom, also provide the framework for how the Navy will organize, align, integrate, and transform to meet the challenges that lie ahead.
"We are protecting capital assets," said Capt. Kelly Johnson, NAVSTA Norfolk Executive Officer. "Training and getting our Navy ready for a realistic situation by performing various exercises definitely ties into the CNO's vision."