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    Ohio Guardsman Contributes to International Preparedness through NATO Training



    Courtesy Story

    174 Air Defense Artillery Brigade

    Maj. Mike Boyes, an Air Defense Artillery Fire Control Officer with the 174th Air Defense Artillery Brigade, Ohio Army National Guard, begins his nine-month deployment by creating training injects during Citadel Bonus 18 in Bydgoszcz, Poland.

    Citadel Bonus 18 is a two level command post exercise where Rapid Reaction Corps – France is the main training audience. The exercise trains the French corps to maintain the joint level capability required in a multi-nation response to a potential international crisis.

    The scope of the exercise is vast, but previous iterations of Citadel Bonus did not have an Exercise Controller for the Patriot Missile System. An Exercise Controller works to direct the scenario to guide training in a specific area of expertise.

    Lt. Col Jason Lauer, the Officer of Primary Responsibility of Citadel Bonus 18 assigned to Rapid Reaction Corps – France, saw the vacancy in Patriot Missile experience. “Boyes is value added to the team, he increases the complexity of the training by adding a component that we did not have highlighted in the past,” Lauer said, pointing out that there was no one to answer the questions or pose strategic problems for the training audience.

    Boyes, whose home town is Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio, saw Citadel Bonus 18 as an exciting opportunity. He worked closely with the French Air Force officers in the Joint Force Air Component Command Cell (JFACC) to increase the rigor of the training. “My goal is to bring the Patriot weapon system to life in the exercise,” Boyes said.

    Bringing his 10 years of experience and training as an air defender to the exercise, Boyes worked to create events for the simulation that stretched the training audience. He understood what it was like to be placed in a training event, only to find that the trainers were not prepared to instruct on ADA. “I get to be on the other end now, I get to see where the scenario is going and I get to create what the training audience will have to react to. My experiences is allowing them to train more accurately,“ Boyes said.

    A sample of the training events that Boyes created was a failed radar system that forced the JFACC to take an ADA Battery out of commission for a short time, notify their higher command of the loss of coverage, and coordinate alternative means to defend a critical asset.

    “This will allow the ADA officers to accurately advise their commanders on the air defense assets in his area of operations and lead to increased success on the battlefield,” Boyes said.

    An important element to Citadel Bonus 18 is national level coordination. NATO interoperability could not happen without building interpersonal relationships at the Soldier level.

    Boyes’ workstation is next to that of Lt. Col. Benoit Langrand, the Director of Staff of French Joint Force Command. The two frequently worked together to shape training and make adjustments based on the actions of the staff. Lt. Col. Langrand said that he enjoyed working with his American counterpart. Smiling at the end of the exercise, Langrand said, “The teamwork was perfect.”



    Date Taken: 12.24.2018
    Date Posted: 12.25.2018 21:01
    Story ID: 305027
    Location: BYDGOSZCZ, PL 

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