"Halfway between two NATO Summits, the aim of this Seminar is to offer a unique opportunity to step back and take time to put in perspective NATO's Transformation in gathering NATO political and military authorities as well as Industry, think tanks and academia," said SACT, French Air Force General Jean-Paul Paloméros.
As part of the on-going cooperation between NATO and the European Union (EU), Deputy Supreme Allied Commander Transformation Italian Air Force General Mirco Zuliani and Supreme Allied Commander Transformation's Representative in Europe Vice Admiral Ignacio Horcada, led a delegation that recently engaged with EU authorities.
The Chairman of the EU Military Committee General Patrick De Rousiers and Director General of the EU Military Staff Lieutenant General Wolfgang Wosolsobe, discussed with the ACT delegation how to explore further areas of cooperation between NATO and EU and a possible way ahead. They also touched upon an exchange of liaison officers between EU and ACT, Lessons Learned and the government crisis and terrorism threats in Libya. Furthermore, General Wosolsobe also expressed an interest in cooperating with ACT in the cyber domain, on hybrid warfare, Comprehensive Approach, and Defence Capacity Building.
General Zuliani met the Managing Director for Crisis Response & Operational Coordination of the European External Action Service (EEAS), Mr. Pedro Serrano, to discuss the participation of EEAS in Trident Juncture 2015, the largest NATO exercise in a decade.
At SACEUR's Commanders Conference
General Zuliani also participated in Supreme Allied Commander Europe's (SACEUR) 'Commanders Conference' focussing on NATO's new spearhead 'Very High Readiness Joint Task Force' (VJTF) and the Alliance's Readiness Action Plan (RAP). At the conference, where for the first time the NATO Secretary General participated, SecGen explained that NATO currently is adapting to a new security environment, modelling its 'defense posture' to new challenges – among them the actions of Russia in Ukraine, and the threat from the South, with violence and turmoil spreading through the Middle East and North Africa.
SACEUR's Commanders Conference sets the scene for further collaboration and cooperation between the two Strategic Commands (ACO and ACT) and it is a venue of discussion for the ACO Commanders.
ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates (UAE) – Deputy Supreme Allied Command Transformation (DSACT), Italian Air Force General Mirco Zuliani led an ACT delegation to the 2015 International Defence Exhibition and Conference (IDEX) which concluded February 26.
IDEX, a biennial conference hosted by Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE and Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, is the only international defence exhibition and conference in the Middle East and North Africa (NEMA) region. It serves as a platform to establish and strengthen relationships between government departments, businesses and armed forces throughout the region.
With more than 50 countries represented, including most NATO members, and Russia and China, IDEX covered themes ranging from best use of modern technologies and military-civilian cooperation to interoperability and human resources in future challenges.
During the conference, ACT participants met with a delegation led by Major General Dr. Khalifa Al Romaithi, Assistant Undersecretary for Policy and Strategic Affairs, who was accompanied by several other Generals, including those responsible for the relationship with NATO.
"We thanked them for the great efforts and work they are putting into trying to stabilise the region and their active participation in NATO initiatives" said DSACT. "The themes that were touched upon in the meeting were particularly interesting, as our counterpart is really keen on trying to gain an understanding on how the NATO Lessons Learned (LL) process works."
Representatives of the UAE's Armed Forces expressed interest in NATO participation at some of their national exercises as well as exchanging expertise and bolstering cooperation between the Centres of Excellence (COE) communities.
Following the IDEX, General Zuliani travelled to Doha, Qatar, where he met with two delegations led by the General Inspector of Qatar Armed Forces, Major General Thamer Ali Al Mihshadi and the Chief of Defence (CHOD), Major General Ghanim Shaheen Al Ghanim. He also visited the Air Force Academy and the Al-Udeid Combined Air Operations Centre (CAOC) where he met with the United States' Central Command (CENTCOM) Commander Lieutenant General John W. Hesterman III.
The Qatar CHOD said: "[To] achieve a better prepared and skilled Armed Force is the aim, and nothing but the best is what we are striving to get". DSACT mentioned among other possible areas of collaboration – Defence Capacity Building (DCB).
Qatar plays a very active role in its region; likewise it is one the Partner Nations that took participated in the NATO-led operation in Libya in 2011, Operation Unified Protector (OUP).
Supreme Allied Commander Transformation (SACT), French Air Force General Jean-Paul Paloméros, recently visited the NATO Communications and Information (NCI) Agency's NATO Computer Incident Response Capability (NCIRC TC) Centre in Mons, Belgium.
At the centre he was briefed on NATO's operational cyber defence capabilities. General Paloméros was given a tour of the NCIRC TC and an explanation of the Cyber Security Service Line's role in developing Cyber Security throughout its life-cycle.
After seeing the NCIRC TC Operations Room at work, he was given a brief demonstration of the NATO Cyber Defence Rapid Reaction Team and their equipment, provided under NCIRC Full Operational Capability (FOC) project.
The NCI Agency is responsible for running and protecting NATO's information technology networks. In co-operation with Allied Command Transformation and Industry, the Agency is also developing the next generation of NATO's cyber defences.
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"Corruption is a component of what we call the hybrid strategies that we see developing at the Eastern borders of the Alliance but in the South as well"... "To cope with this increasing presence of corruption in a complex and volatile security environment, [NATO member] nations, International Organisations, NGOs [Non-Governmental Organisations] have obviously their respective role to play. But the most effective answers will above all result from new innovative, comprehensive, and coordinated approaches from all the stakeholders, of which many are represented here".
The above words come from Supreme Allied Commander Transformation (SACT), French Air Force General Jean Paul Paloméros, who gave the keynote speech at NATO's bi-annual 'Building Integrity (BI) Conference in Washington D.C. February 23-25.
During his keynote, SACT stressed that "the pace at which corruption is evolving from what was a risk or a constraint to a real threat for the Alliance and its partners, is a key inhibitor of stability. It therefore requires more than ever, all our efforts so that we can address these vulnerabilities together"
"In light of our recent experiences, we can assess that full success in operations cannot be reached without a strong commitment to promoting integrity, transparency, and accountability. Corruption is becoming more and more a central strategic threat to world stability, to the core of our democratic values"(...)"there is no alternative, we must do that together" SACT concluded.
The BI conference provides an opportunity for civil and military authorities to develop a better understanding of the strategic impact of corruption, and to identify practical actions to strengthen transparency, accountability and integrity in the defence and security sector.
Representatives from NATO member and partner nations, along with other international and regional organisations were participating in this year's event, together with NATO's strategic and subordinate commands.
NORFOLK, Va. – Officers from the U.S. Army War College, International Fellowship Program, visited Headquarters, NATO Supreme Allied Commander Transformation (HQ SACT), in Norfolk, Virginia, February 11 to meet HQ SACT leaders and learn first-hand the command's mission of preserving the peace and security of the Alliance.
On Monday 26 January, at the military base in Albacete, in southeast Spain, nine French and two Greek military personnel were killed in the crash of a Greek F-16 fighter jet. I want to express my solidarity to our brothers in arms, the families and friends of victims during this dramatic accident.
Created on July 1st, 2005, Headquarters Rapid Reaction Corps-France (HQ RRC-FR) is a NATO certified French headquarters, able to command a national or multinational land component of 5,000 to 60,000 personnel. HQ RRC, stationed in Lille, employs more than 400 military coming from thirteen different nations.
SACT's visit to RRC-France in its "Citadelle" is a sign of recognition of its capabilities and "savoir-faire" by the Alliance. The main objective of this visit was to discuss the prospects for "post-Afghanistan training", as well as optimizing the way forward.
RRC–France HQ was ahead on its readiness for NRF 2014, finalized by Steadfast Jazz 14 Exercise. In October 2015, RRC-France should have a scheduled deployment in Poland.
General Paloméros concluded his visit by emphasizing the fact that "Rapid Reaction Corps-France is fully part of the NATO landscape and has a privileged position there".
Photo and video credit: Rapid Reaction Corps France
NORFOLK, Va. - NATO Allied Command Transformation (ACT) continues to raise the bar in gender perspective training around the world. In the most recent United Nations Security Council Report, NATO was recognised for having "strengthened the gender training delivered through the Nordic Centre for Gender in Military Operations."
SACT was welcomed by CSO Deputy Director, Major General (ret.) Roger Renard, and NATO's Chief Scientist, Major General Albert Husniaux. SACT's visit was an opportunity for him to present CSO's Collaborative Program of Work (CPoW) and speak about issues pertaining to ACT and CSO collaboration. It was also an opportunity to reflect on lessons learned two years after the CSO establishment and to identify ways to further improve the relationship between the two entities, from better understanding of military needs to exploitation of scientific results.
The CSO is part of the NATO Science & Technology Organization (STO). Its mission is to conduct and promote cooperative research and information exchange, to support the development and effective use of national defence research and technology – to meet the military needs of the Alliance.
"On behalf of the entire Allied Command Transformation, I want to express my solidarity to the French Community in the United States as well as French and other Allies' commitment to fight against all kinds of extremism and terrorism and defend our core values of democracy and freedom, and more particularly in these dramatic circumstances, the freedom of expression."
NATO Supreme Allied Commander Transformation (SACT) French Air Force General Jean-Paul Paloméros along with Stability Policing Centre of Excellence (SP COE) Director Colonel Fausto Vignola lead a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signing ceremony during the Chiefs of Transformation Conference December 18, 2014 officially establishing the SP COE.
The MOU establishes Italy as the framework nation for the SP COE which is located in Vicenza, Italy. Sponsoring nations included the Czech Republic, France, Poland, Spain, The Netherlands, Turkey and Romania.
The NATO SP COE operates as a prime mover to increase contributions to the stability and reconstruction efforts of the Alliance in post-conflict scenarios and it will help NATO fill the capability gap in the area of Stability Policing. It will also act as an internationally recognised focal point and a hub of expertise for a Community of Interest in the field of Stability Policing, contributing to the NATO Strategic Concept.
The Princess met with Supreme Allied Commander Transformation (SACT), French Air Force General Jean-Paul Paloméros; the Deputy Commander, Italian Air Force General Mirco Zuliani; and Chief of Staff, British Army Lieutenant General Phil Jones.
Princess Tessy will attend the 2014 Chiefs of Transformation Conference (COTC) in Norfolk, Virginia, December 16-18. The COTC, hosted annually by SACT, provides a forum where national Chiefs of Transformation and NATO leaders can collaborate and share ideas regarding the future of the Alliance. Last year, more than 270 participants from 50 different countries attended. HQ SACT is the only NATO headquarters located in the United States.
Continuing to strengthen its relationships with academic institutions, Headquarters, Supreme Allied Commander Transformation (SACT) has established an agreement with Regent University's Military & Veteran's Affairs in Norfolk, Virginia.
Earlier this fall, NATO staff officers Lieutenant Colonel Alfonso Alvarez (Spanish Army) and Commander Matteo Minelli (Italian Navy) attended a signing ceremony for the letter of accord with Regent's executive vice president for operations, Dr. Paul Bonicelli.
"The agreement between Regent and NATO SACT enables both parties to benefit from the wealth of expertise that the other has to offer. Based also on a scholarship agreement for SACT staff and their families, all beneficiaries will have access to a variety of very valuable educational benefits," said Minelli, who represents NATO SACT Strategic Issues & Engagement, Academic Outreach.
The agreement establishes a military tuition scholarship for qualified active duty SACT employees, currently nearly 600 employees from NATO's 28 nations, their spouses and dependents, offering a 25 percent discount on tuition for Regent's College of Arts & Sciences (CAS) and graduate programs.
David Boisselle, director of Military & Veteran's Affairs, said that international military officers receiving education from Regent will extend the school's global reach even further.
"The mission of the university is 'Christian leadership to change the world,' you come to Regent to get educated, and go back into your professions to shine that Christian light," said Boisselle. "Everyone leaves here emboldened and equipped."
Learn more about Regent University here.
General Mirco Zuliani was inducted into the U.S. "Air University International Honor Roll" on December 3rd. This was in recognition of his achievement as Deputy Supreme Allied Commander Transformation (DSACT).
The U.S. International Officer School named a total of 24 former students to its Honor Roll. This was done in recognition of their military career achievements in their respective countries, rising to Flag and General Officer ranks, and happened in the presence of Ms. Heidi H. Grant, Deputy Under Secretary of the Air Force, International Affairs.
A plaque engraved with General Zuliani's name and position is now permanently displayed at the school.
During the ceremony, DSACT thanked the President of the Air University for the opportunity to attend the college 22 years ago.
Among the other officers inducted are: Major General Rumen Radev (Commander, Bulgarian Air Force); General Thomas J. Lawson (Chief of Defence Staff, Canadian Armed Forces); Brigadier General Libor Stefanik (Commander Czech Air Force); Colonel Jaak Tarien (Commander, Estonian Air Force); Major General Amir Eshel (Commander, Israeli Air Force); General Harukazu Saitoh (Chief of Staff, Japanese Air Self-Defense Force); Lieutenant General (retired) Khamis S.F. Al Marzouq (Commander, Kuwaiti Air Force); Lieutenant General H. Bart Hoitink (Inspector General, Dutch Armed Forces); Major General Laurian Anastasof (Chief of Romanian Air Force Staff).
The International Honor Roll has over the years recognised 456 military leaders from 97 countries.
The purpose of this visit was to become informed on current and future NATO M&S COE work and activities in support of NATO and its member nations and to discuss upcoming challenges and issues. This was the first opportunity for SACT to meet in person with the Centre's team and with the member nations' representatives. Senior Italian General Staff officers also participated.
General Paloméros was briefed by the NATO M&S COE Director, Italian Air Force Colonel Stefano Nicolò, and the Deputy Director, US Army Lieutenant Colonel John Ferrell on the centre's history, mission and organisation, lines of effort and products and services currently offered by the centre. A particular focus was on education & training opportunities, unique technological capabilities and internal initiatives relevant to a wide spectrum of M&S activities within NATO.
Following a tour of the facility, key staff from the COE briefed and demonstrated live a select group of projects which illustrate the current value of the M&S COE and the potential for future derived benefits. These demonstrations also highlighted the importance of the many partnerships and collaborations the COE has with industry, academia and governmental institutions – in order to achieve better interoperability.
General Paloméros commended the NATO M&S COE's current efforts in support of the Alliance and acknowledged the COE's desire and potential to further improve its capacity and capability to more effectively contribute to overcoming NATO's challenges. With this potential in mind, SACT commented that the COE will be championed at the highest levels within NATO to become responsible for more challenging roles within the M&S domain.
During a recent visit to Romania, Supreme Allied Commander Transformation (SACT), French Air Force General Jean-Paul Paloméros spoke to 350 staff and students at the National Defence University in Bucharest: 115 student officers attending Master's degree courses, and 200 officers attending post university degree courses (tactical, operational and strategic level). Some of these courses are being held in English (Brigade Staff Officers Course and Advanced Joint Staff Officers Course). The audience also counted thirty faculty members.
SACT described NATO's Transformation efforts and advocated three simple messages to the Romanian students and young officers. Firstly, they are "members of an Alliance which has just celebrated its 65th anniversary, which can be proud of its past, and which is ready to defend the sovereignty and security of its 28 members, the sovereignty and security of 900 million people". Secondly, "NATO is taking on its responsibilities to cope with emerging threats; and thirdly, the transformation efforts that SACT's command is leading, are indispensable to adapt the NATO Alliance and prepare its future".
SACT stressed that "[This] is above all a real opportunity for a Strategic Commander to reaffirm the Alliance's resolve to support its Eastern Allies, to support Romania and many other Allies, in a time when ambiguity and development of hybrid threats is increasing on the flanks of the Alliance, and certainly in the East and South-East".
One international officer was also present – a major from Tunisia – he is a student in the Multinational Operations and Regional Crisis Management Department.
Click here to read the full speech given at the National Defence University.
General Paloméros also visited the NATO Human Intelligence Centre of Excellence (HCOE) whilst in Romania. SACT was among others accompanied by Romanian Deputy Chief of Defence, Major General Nicolae Ciucă and the Director of the national Military Intelligence Directorate, Major General Cristian-Iulian Dincovici.
The HCOE Director, Colonel Eduard Simion, explained the COE's mission to SACT. During the presentation of the COE mission as well as the infrastructure, General Paloméros underlined the importance of the NATO Centres of Excellence for the Strategic Commands. He congratulated the HCOE Director for the centre's achievements, emphasised the centre's timely and accurate response to the NATO requests for support and for its "outstanding educational infrastructure".
The Albanian Minister of Defence, Mimi Kodheli visited Headquarters, Supreme Allied Commander Transformation (SACT) October 30. She was greeted by Deputy SACT, Italian Air Force General Mirco Zuliani.
This was the first time that an Albanian government official visited the NATO headquarters in Norfolk since April 2009, when the country became a NATO member.
In his welcome remarks General Zuliani said that "Albania has a long record of collaboration with [Allied Command Transformation] and we recognise the work that has been done through the accession and integration process. Likewise, Albania forms a part of our unique community, representing common values and a strong desire for international peace and security".
The Albanian delegation met with the broader ACT leadership in a round table discussion aimed at gaining insight in ACT strands of work. The discussion was focused on topics including the Smart Defence and Connected Forces Initiatives, Defence Planning and NATO's Centres of Excellence.
NATO is working with its member nation Albania in a range of areas, with particular emphasis on defence and security sector reform, as well as support for wider democratic and institutional reforms.
Albania played an important role in supporting NATO efforts to end the humanitarian crisis in Kosovo in 1999 and secure the peace after the NATO operation. The country allowed the NATO allies to establish a logistics support command centre in the capital Tirana to help sustain peacekeeping operations in neighboring Kosovo.
Around 240 key military and civilian communicators from both the NATO command structure and member nations recently met in Split, Croatia for their annual conferences and workshops. New this year was that all the communication communities met at the same location during the same week: Strategic Communications, Public Affairs, military Public Affairs, Psychological Operations and Information Operations. These communities have typically met separately during the year and since they all contribute to the same effort, a closer coordination of their work has been a clearly defined goal. Such a 'conference of conferences' will also reduce travel cost and time away from the office, as many staff had been going to more than one meeting.
"Building trust between communities that traditionally have been skeptical of each other has been crucial to make this happen," said the Chief of Public Affairs and Deputy Chief of Strategic Communication for Allied Command Transformation, Mr. Roy Thorvaldsen. "We consider the first try successful enough to do it again next year before passing any verdict of the new format," Thorvaldsen said.
There were plenary sessions at the beginning and the end of the conference week, and in-between the communities held their individual conferences and working groups according to their own program.
The conference main themes were on-going geo-political events in Eastern Europe and the Middle East. There were also updates on the latest operational matters and the Strategic Communications Capability Development projects.
NATO's two strategic commanders, Supreme Allied Commander Europe, US Air Force General Philip M Breedlove, and Supreme Allied Commander Transformation, French Air Force General Jean-Paul Paloméros, gave opening remarks via recorded video message.
NATO's Assistant Secretary General for Public Diplomacy, Ambassador Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović, attended the opening of the event, and NATO Spokesperson Ms. Oana Lungescu addressed the conference – underling the importance of working together in creating and communicating the NATO narrative.
The 8th Operations Research and Analysis (OR&A) Conference was held on 20-21 October in Prague, in the Czech Republic. The conference theme was to capture lessons from two decades of conflict and to chart the way forward when confronted with the challenges of the changing security environment.
The conference was co-sponsored by Allied Command Transformation (ACT) and the Science and Technology Organization (STO). In opening remarks the Director for the Czech Defence Planning, Dr Jan Jircek, the NATO Chief Scientist Major General Albert Husniaux and Assistant Chief of Staff Capability Engineering and Innovation, Brigadier General Henrik Sommer touched upon a common theme of future strengths and opportunities for the OR&A within the Alliance nations.
About 24 presentations on OR&A issues covering a wide spectrum of topics on the value and usefulness of analysis, analytical tools and methods, defence studies and military application of OR&A filled the program for the eighty-five participants of the conference.
Presentations will be made available on the ACT website on the OR&A page.
Commander of the Joint Warfare Centre (JWC), German Army Major General Reinhard Wolski, leads a round table discussion with National Liaison Representatives during his first visit to the Headquarters of NATO's Supreme Allied Commander Transformation (SACT) in Norfolk, Virginia, since assuming command on September 24.
Major General Wolski met with SACT, French Air Force General Jean-Paul Paloméros, Deputy SACT Italian Air Force General Mirco Zuliani and Chief of Staff British Army Lieutenant General Phil Jones. He also discussed with SACT flag officers and generals about optimising JWC operations to the benefit of the Alliance. Topics included the NATO Defence Planning and Training processes, education and individual training, and the NATO Response Force.
Supreme Allied Commander Transformation (SACT), French Air Force General Jean-Paul Paloméros opened the Conference with a short recording emphasising the contributions of NATO COEs to the Alliance and encouraging development of "a federated project approach to deal with the complexity of the geopolitical environment." General Paloméros told the audience: "Strategic awareness, resilience and hybrid warfare are but a few of the key challenges NATO must face in the future. The magnitude of these issues is insurmountable by any single institution, but a federated organisation of subject matter experts may hold the key to unlocking this complexity and developing a comprehensive strategic approach to these global issues. I believe you are the right community to support this development in very close cooperation with ACT."
The 2014 conference marked the first time a Director co-chaired the event with ACT's Transformation Network Branch. The Conference provided the Directors and opportunity to discuss their support to NATO through their Programmes of Work, future Military Committee engagements, and updating and approving new Terms of Reference for the group.
The conference was attended by representatives from all 20 NATO COEs as well as centres currently under development, as well as representatives from the International Staff of the NATO Headquarters and a discussion with the Assistant Secretary General for Emerging Security Challenges, Ambassador Sorin Ducaru.
The annual COE Directors' conference is a meeting of COE Directors to discuss issues relevant to the COE community, compare experiences, share best practices, discuss mutual support and cooperation, provide a forum for an exchange of views on the way ahead and thus facilitate directors' networking in order to increase the individual collective effectiveness of the Centres.
On behalf of Supreme Allied Commander Transformation (SACT), the Federated Mission Networking (FMN) Implementation Seminar has been successfully completed in Vilnius, Lithuania. The two-day Seminar was attended by 33 nations and over 190 attendees.
Specifically mentioned in the Wales NATO Summit declaration, FMN is a unique initiative. It neatly brings together the notion of enhanced interoperability, it respects the important roles of partners in the federation and it improves command and control while building on the lessons of the Afghan Mission Network (AMN). It is a key component of the Connected Forces Initiative (CFI) and the achievement of NATO Forces 2020.
Allied Command Transformation used the Seminar to continue the work to operationalise national and NATO FMN ambitions by addressing six important areas including doctrine, FMN affiliation, mission threads, training and exercises, alignment within NATO Defence Planning Process (NDPP) and synchronisation with Cyber Defence development.
Attendees were updated on best practices, and received information on how fielded national capabilities can be utilised to deliver FMN quickly and cost-effectively. NATO and national representatives also contributed to defining strategic solutions to the most challenging of FMN issues.