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US Army Corps of Engineers trains Ghanaian military partners on base camp design


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American Instructor Mike Gerhard from the US Army Corps of Engineers, Europe District; Alonzo Ellis of the US Army Corps of Engineers, Fort Worth District, and Dan Hunt of the US Army Engineer School discuss proposed base camp design plans with engineers from the Ghana Armed Forces as part of the Base Camp Design Training course on October 18, 2022 Of. Accra, Ghana. The training, which was led by the US Army Corps of Engineers in support of the US Army’s Southern European Task Force, Africa Initiative, establishing forward bases while deployed to support UN peacekeeping missions and other tasks was designed to enhance their capabilities. (courtesy photo)
(Photo Credits: Credits)

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US Army Corps of Engineers trains Ghanaian military partners on base camp design


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Engineers from the Army of Ghana join with the US Army Corps of Engineers, US Embassy in Accra, the US Security Forces Assistance Brigade and the US Army Southern European Task Force, Africa, for a photo at the schoolhouse on October 14, 2022, where the engineers set up base Vikas took training in the camp. The training is part of the larger African Peacekeeping Rapid Response Partnership program, led by the US Army Southern European Task Force, Africa US Army. (courtesy photo)
(Photo credit: Christopher Gardner)

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ACCRA, Ghana – When the call comes to support UN peacekeeping operations, the Ghana Armed Forces routinely respond to that call and are expected to base their operations, sometimes from existing base camps. Install with framework. They can operate from the corner of an airport, a commanded sports field or a patch of land in an undeveloped part of a forest or desert area – wherever peace is needed.

Developing base camps efficiently and logistically for deployed forces is critical to the success of any mission, and that is why experts from the US Army Corps of Engineers recently sent combat engineers and planners to the Ghana Armed Forces in Ghana. He was teaching a course in Base Camp Design in the capital of India. of Accra.

“We covered natural disasters, humanitarian assistance, border peacekeeping and war scenarios,” said Michael Gerhard of the Europe District, who was part of the field force engineering team that conducted the training in Ghana. “Many of these soldiers have been deployed for contingency operations in areas such as Mali, Sudan and other countries, and they were very interested in learning from our team and we were interested in learning from them how to apply these techniques to practical real-world use.” how to translate our ideas to the field.”

The training is part of the larger African Peacekeeping Rapid Response Partnership program, which the US Army Southern European Task Force, Africa (SETAF-AF) leads for the US Army. Through this program, the US military engages with military partners in Ghana and other partner nations (PN) on the continent to train and enhance their capabilities, from engineering capabilities to maneuvers and during peacekeeping and other missions on the continent attaches.

“The purpose of the APRRP program is to provide a peace stabilization force in the short term and the training of African PN forces, and in this case engineer units in particular, to provide a foundational basis for the modernization of those units so that they can support UN peacekeeping operations.” can go (PKO) mission,” said the senior theater security cooperation officer for SETAF-AF Deputy Chief of Staff Engineer Directorate (DCSENG) Lt. Col. Fernando A. Franco. “This gives the United States the opportunity to cooperate and partner with the PN on the continent.” Also allows to strengthen. The feedback I have received from PN is that the training provided by the US Army Corps of Engineers is of a high quality and is contributing to the advancement of the UN PKO mission and the overall capabilities of PN engineer units.

Ghanaian courses cover the overall process of planning a base camp, starting with the basics of what to look for when customizing a selected site, if this is an option, to planning Layout will need more.

“Depending on the mission and the number of people, that will dictate the size of the base camp and the way you lay it out, so it makes sense. Where do you put logistics? Where do you put housing? Where do you put the common areas, like the food, where do you put the toilets? Where do you put the garbageman?” Mitchell Glenn, field force engineering training and exercise manager from the US Army Corps of Engineers Headquarters, said: “It’s not just random, we teach them the principles and concepts of how you build it, what kind of force protection you need depending on the situation. are needed when you are building these and many more.”

Additionally, the team incorporated lessons learned from their Ghanaian counterparts into past training and current events to make it as relevant as possible to Ghanaian personnel.

“We included an additional class on force protection that was developed as a result of lessons learned from initial training USACE conducted in Ghana in May 2019,” said Arlene Weiner, US Army Corps of Engineers, Headquarters Environmental Support Team National Program Manager. Joe was part of the team in Ghana and has been involved in the program since that first training. “Prior to the start of this most recent training, USACE was briefed on GAF’s current missions, including support of Mali at the Timbuktu site, and 2022 training specifically designed to give students experience in Ghana and were designed using sites in Mali. where they will potentially provide future support.”

He also said that when planning the training, the team also took into account the Ghana Armed Forces’ recent involvement in the northern border between Ghana and Burkina Faso, where they supported missions protecting Ghana’s border from attacks.

The training program has been ongoing for years and the US Army Corps of Engineers has administered similar training with other armed forces in the past, including Rwanda. The program slowed during COVID and training in Ghana was one of the first US Army Corps of Engineers teams to be able to resume in-person overseas since the start of the pandemic.

“Being able to go to Ghana and work with the military guys there made a big impact,” Gerhardt said. “They were really relieved to get a lot of their questions answered, like how to improve on what they’ve done in previous deployments. They were asking about recycling and safe disposal of oil spills from machinery And we were able to give them ideas.”

In addition to the US Army Corps of Engineers instructors, the mission was directly supported by personnel from the US Embassy, ​​the US Army Southern European Task Force in Accra, Africa, and the US Army Engineering School at Fort Leonard Wood in Missouri. 2nd Security Force Support Brigade based out of Fort Bragg, NC

“The Ghana Armed Forces, and PNs in Africa in general, who are receiving great training provided by the US Army Corps of Engineers, are seeing the benefits of being part of a larger mission that is responsible for maintaining peace on the continent. Supports operations and also helps modernize your own engineer units,” Franco said. “The US Army Corps of Engineers bring a lot of expertise regarding base camp master planning training and over the many years SETAF-AF has been working with GAF, we have also benefited from their on-the-ground knowledge, resulting in A fruitful partnership.”


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