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12 janvier 2016 2 12 /01 /janvier /2016 08:45
Barkhane : Un laboratoire de génie

 

07/01/2016 Sources : Ministère de la Défense/EMA

 

La lutte contre les engins explosifs improvisés (EEI ou IED en anglais) est partie intégrante de la protection des forces. Spécialité de l’armée de Terre, c’est à Angers que nos militaires sont formés à la lutte contre EEI. Afin d’affuter leurs connaissances techniques dans la lutte contre EEI, un laboratoire d’expertise français a été créé il y a un an. Déployé pour la première fois en opération extérieure en novembre et décembre 2015, il permet aux terriens du génie d’apporter leur expertise à la force Barkhane.

 

Le laboratoire CIEL, Counter-IED Exploitation Laboratory ou laboratoire d’exploitation contre les engins explosifs improvisés, est né de l’expérience européenne en Afghanistan. Composé de quatre spécialistes, équipé d’un matériel d’analyse de haute technologie, léger et transportable, il est conçu pour être déployé très rapidement en cas de besoin sur un théâtre d’opération extérieure.
 Partie intégrante de la protection de la force, la lutte contre les EEI est destinée à garantir et préserver la liberté de mouvement et de manœuvre des troupes sur le terrain.

 

Cette lutte regroupe l’ensemble des activités de nature offensive et défensive menées par les forces pour prévenir cette menace, la traiter et réduire ses effets. 
Déployé au Mali pendant deux mois, ce laboratoire a pu exploiter les éléments collectés par les équipes du génie de l’armée de Terre récemment engagées dans la vallée des Ifoghas, zone particulièrement concernée par la présence de mines et d’engins explosifs improvisés. Chaque militaire spécialiste réalise une recherche dans son domaine d’expertise : chimie, électronique, technique d’investigation criminelle et déminage. Les éléments explosifs en particulier sont ainsi analysés afin de récolter de précieux indices sur leur origine et leur nature.
Selon l’ONU, pour la seule année 2015, pas moins d’une centaine d’incidents mines et engins explosifs improvisés ont été enregistrés au Mali. Après huit semaines de recherches sur une trentaine de cas, qui ont donné lieu à plus de cent cinquante analyses, le laboratoire CIEL a accumulé des renseignements précieux, partagés avec les forces de sécurité maliennes et la MINUSMA, afin de progresser ensemble dans la lutte contre le terrorisme.


 

L’opération Barkhane compte 3 500 militaires dont la mission, en partenariat avec les pays du G5 Sahel, consiste à lutter contre les groupes armés terroristes pouvant agir dans la bande sahélo-saharienne.

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10 décembre 2015 4 10 /12 /décembre /2015 12:20
Support: New Training Against New Threats

 

December 8, 2015: Strategy Page

 

Based on experience in Iraq and Afghanistan the U.S. Department of Defense set up JIDA (Joint Improvised-Threat Defeat Organization) in September 2015 and proceeded to establish thirteen training centers where troops (mainly soldiers and marines) could receive instruction (and realistic practice) on the types of hand-held detectors available to detect bombs and mines. The training also includes imparting useful techniques learned in over a decade of dealing with these weapons.

 

At the top end of the devices the troops would use there is Minehound, which is a four (or more) kg (8.8 pounds) hand held device typical of those used for over half a century to detect mines. Troops hold it like a vacuum cleaner sweeping the circular sensor over the ground in front of them to detect mines and bombs, even those that do not contain metal. The high-end Minehound (costing over $40,000) incorporates a ground penetrating radar which can detect non-metallic mines or bombs.

 

Usually combat engineers are in charge of mine sweeping and removal, but since World War II most troops were trained in primitive, but often effective, techniques to detect mines. This often involved probing with a bayonet. With cheap (a few hundred dollars each) “beach comber” type metal detectors troops can clear a lot more ground more quickly but only if the mines are metallic. Devices like Minehound can handle just about anything out there, including the growing number of non-metallic devices, but requires more training. This includes some actual experience with different types of devices in different types of soil. A hundred or so hours of instruction at these training centers can make troops much more effective with any kind of detector.

 

JIDA exists because landmines and IEDs (Improvised Explosive devices) caused over 65 percent of troop casualties in Iraq and Afghanistan and remain a favorite weapon with irregular forces, especially Islamic terrorists. American troops have had to deal with IEDs before 2001 but not to the extent encountered in since then IEDs became much more common. In Vietnam IEDs only accounted for 14 percent of casualties and in previous wars that was even less. In response to the resurgence of IED use the U.S. established JIEDDO (Joint Improvised Explosive Device Defeat Organization) in 2006 and spent $25 billion developing ways to minimize the impact of IEDs. It was JIEDDO, now smaller because most troops were gone from Iraq and Afghanistan, that was turned into JIDA in 2015.

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1 octobre 2015 4 01 /10 /octobre /2015 07:40
Op UNIFIER: les premiers militaires ukrainiens diplômés du cours canadien de déminage sont prêts

Le lieutenant-colonel ukrainien Gavryluk parle aux membres des Forces ukrainiennes et des Forces armées canadiennes lors d’une cérémonie pour la présentation de certificats de réussite militaire aux instructeurs des Forces ukrainiennes de l’école de lutte contre les dispositifs explosifs de circonstance du centre de déminage de Kamyanets Podilsky pendant l’opération UNIFIER en Ukraine. (Photo : Caméra de combat des Forces canadiennes, MDN)


30.09.2015 par
 

Les premiers militaires ukrainiens à être formés par les Forces armées canadiennes ont obtenu leur diplôme la semaine dernière après une semaine d’instruction intensive au centre de déminage du ministère de la Défense ukrainien, situé à Kamyanets-Podilsky, rapporte l’Armée canadienne.

 

Le 14 avril 2015, le premier ministre Stephen Harper, entouré de son ministre de la Défense et du chef d’état-major de la Défense, avait annoncé que le Canada allait déployer près de 200 membres des FAC en Ukraine jusqu’au 31 mars 2017.

Mais, alors que les formateurs américains étaient déjà à l’oeuvre depuis longtemps, la mission canadienne tardait à commencer, faute d’avoir défini le cadre juridique de l’opération canadienne avec les autorités ukrainiennes. Finalement, après une longue période de préparation, la mission d’instruction opération UNIFIER, a démarré officiellement le 14 septembre.

Le cours dispensé par les canadiens au Centre de déminage du ministère de la Défense ukrainien portait principalement sur les compétences essentielles en génie de combat, comme le déroulement des activités sur le champ de tir et la neutralisation des munitions conventionnelles, dit l’Armée canadienne dans un article sur son site cette semaine.

Ces compétences, explique-t-elle, ont fait l’objet d’évaluations lors d’exercices de campagne sous le regard attentif d’experts en neutralisation des explosifs et des munitions des Forces armées canadiennes.

«Nous avons offert de la formation sur certaines compétences essentielles qui jetteront les bases d’une formation avancée subséquente», explique le major Matt Littlechild, l’officier canadien dirigeant la portion de l’instruction sur la lutte contre les dispositifs explosifs de circonstance (IED) pour l’opération UNIFIER.

Ce premier groupe de militaires ukrainiens diplômés du cours canadien de génie en Ukraine le 19 septembre est constitué d’instructeurs, de préciser le major: «Tous ces étudiants sont des instructeurs au centre de déminage. Ils utiliseront les connaissances qu’ils ont pu acquérir pendant ce cours pour améliorer l’instruction qu’ils offrent.»

La prochaine phase de l’instruction au centre de déminage consistera en la prestation, en partenariat, de cours supplémentaires en génie à un plus grand groupe de militaires ukrainiens, suivis de cours sur des techniques avancées de lutte contre les IED à l’aide de matériel de neutralisation des munitions et des explosifs donné par le Canada.

En plus de l’expertise en génie qu’apporte le personnel des Forces armées canadiennes au centre de déminage de Kamyanets-Podilsky, la mission d’entraînement militaire du Canada en Ukraine offre de l’entraînement tactique au centre d,entraînement Starychi et fournit aussi une formation dans les domaines de la police militaire, de la sécurité aérienne, du secourisme militaire et de la logistique.

Le Canada et l’Ukraine sont des alliés de longue date et, à la chute du bloc soviétique, Ottawa a été parmi les premières capitales à reconnaître l’indépendance de l’Ukraine. En outre, depuis le renversement du président pro-russe Ianoukovitch en février 2014 et le début de la crise ukrainienne, le Canada, qui compte une importante minorité ukrainienne forte de i,2 millions de personnes, a été un soutien indéfectible des nouvelles autorités pro-occidentales à Kiev.

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16 septembre 2015 3 16 /09 /septembre /2015 07:50
"European Guardian 2015" welcomes distinguished guests

 

Vienna - 15 September, 2015 European Defence Agency


Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) continue to cause significant casualties in operations as well as in civil surroundings. Therefore, countering them remains a priority for all participating Member States. There are situations where the use of normal explosives ordnance disposal procedures is inappropriate due to the operational situation, and Manual Neutralisation Techniques – a last resort of Commanders - might be required to counter the threat. On 8 September, Austria and the European Defence Agency organised the second Distinguished Visitors day during the margins of Exercise “European Guardian 2015” at the Austrian Logistics School facilities of Vienna, Austria.

 

Forty participants from Austria, Colombia, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Romania, Republic of Serbia, Sweden, and UK, attended the Distinguished Visitors’ Day of the European Guardian 2015 Manual Neutralisation Techniques Courses & Exercises programme. Representatives from EUROPOL and the C-IED Centre of Excellence also took part in the event. 

The day was presided over by the Austrian Armed Forces Capabilities Director Brigadier General Peter Resch and the EDA Capability, Armament & Technology Director, Peter Round. Both recognised the relevance of the programme and insisted on the need to continue to develop it in the future. 

A live demonstration, executed by an MNT specialists team, was staged in the margins of the meeting. The demonstration consisted of the disposal of an IED which held a chemical payload and several complex initiation systems. Attendees not only had the opportunity to witness all MNT teams immersed in their tasks but also to discuss their activity and the latest innovations in MNT kits. 

Attendees discussed their expectations of the programme during their visit to the specific “urban” simulated training area. It was generally agreed that one of the most relevant take away points was that MNT operators are highly trained and few in number, and that given the high degree of specialisation needed, frequent refresher training of MNT operators was considered crucial. To that end, the Manual Neutralisation Techniques Courses & Exercises programme is extremely valuable. The next milestone within the programme will be the first one week MNT refresher course to be held in November 2015 at the Austrian Logistics School.

 

More information:

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11 septembre 2015 5 11 /09 /septembre /2015 11:55
photo Armée de Terre

photo Armée de Terre

 

10/09/2015 Armée de Terre

 

En juillet 2015, le sergent-chef Michèle du 13e régiment du génie de Valdahon (Doubs), a obtenu la qualification d’équipier EOD. Elle est la première femme à accéder à cette spécialité très technique dans l’armée de Terre.

 

Traduit en français par élément opérationnel de déminage et dépollution, les spécialistes EOD sont des militaires de l’armée de Terre capables d’intervenir  sur tout type de munitions, d’explosifs ou d’engins improvisés afin de faciliter l’engagement des troupes au contact de l’adversaire.

 

Acteur majeur de l’armée de Terre et de la Défense civile, l’arme du génie se distingue par ses trois composantes complémentaires : le combat (déminage, franchissement), l’infrastructure (ingénierie militaire, construction) et la sécurité (séisme, inondations).

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11 septembre 2015 5 11 /09 /septembre /2015 11:35
A British soldier learning Counter IED drills. U.K. Ministry of Defense photo by Sgt Ian Forsyth RLC

A British soldier learning Counter IED drills. U.K. Ministry of Defense photo by Sgt Ian Forsyth RLC

 

Sep 11, 2015 by Richard Tomkins (UPI)

 

Britain plans to gift Pakistan spare parts and other equipment to support counter-explosive equipment previously given to the country.

 

The intention to donate more than $1.5 million of equipment was announced earlier this week by Defense Secretary Michael Fallon.

 

"I'm pleased that we are able to offer this support package as our counter-IED work is part of our close partnership with Pakistan and our shared determination to fight terrorism," Fallon said.

 

"By working together, we will make our streets safer at home in the UK and in Pakistan. Pakistan has a rapidly expanding C-IED capability, with over 5,000 of its security forces trained, and more of these IEDs are being defeated across the provinces and lives are being saved. Pakistani battalions, who have benefited from UK support, have been operating for more than a year as part of the military's counter-terrorism operations."

 

Britain last May completed a three-year program to help Pakistan develop a multi-agency ability to counter improvised explosive devices. Counter-IED equipment, including mine detectors, were donated to the country. A new three-year support package was then offered to Pakistan, which borders Afghanistan and which faces its own extremist threat.

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9 septembre 2015 3 09 /09 /septembre /2015 12:20
Support: JIEDDO Becomes JIDA

 

September 5, 2015: Strategy Page

 

The Future of IEDs:  Improvised explosive devices (IEDs) caused over 65 percent of coalition casualties in Iraq and Afghanistan and are likely to remain the bad guy weapon of choice in the near future.  Using such devices is a great way to fight the high-tech U.S. when you are a technological and material underdog. Despite the success insurgents have had using IEDs, there is intense professional discussion in the U.S. military over how much energy and resources, including valuable training time, to exert in dealing with them.  

 

Since September 11, 2001 two-thirds of the Americans killed in combat were the victims of roadside bombs and (much less often) mines. This was a big shift from the American experience in Vietnam, where 14 percent of American deaths were from bombs and mines. While that meant twice as many Americans killed by bombs and mines during Vietnam (55,000 dead) compared to Iraq and Afghanistan (6,700 dead), the IEDs (improvised explosive devices) became the most successful weapon the enemy had against American troops. In response the U.S. formed JIEDDO (Joint Improvised Explosive Device Defeat Organization), a $25 billion dollar effort to deal with roadside bombs. Because of the fear that IEDs will continue to be a major threat (because all the other battlefield dangers have been made so much less dangerous) the U.S. is keeping JIEDDO going, although cutting staff and funding by about two-thirds.

 

The greatly reduced level of US ground forces in Iraq and Afghanistan has occasioned a serious debate within the U.S. Army and Marine Corps on the future status of Counter-IED skills, equipment and training.  army and marine leaders worry about the loss of legacy skills, examples of which are combined arms operations at the battalion and brigade level and a generation of marines who are unfamiliar with operating from on board ship.  One of the touch points of the associated professional debate was the future of JIEDDO.  The debate is now over and in July 2015 JIEDDO become the Joint Improvised-Threat Defeat Organization now known as JIDA.  This re-designation creates a permanent organization and the change in scope is obvious.  American military thinkers acknowledge IEDs were a surprising tactic, with strategic implications, for which the military had no immediate solution.  No one wants to repeat the spectacle of U.S. troops putting improvised armor on their hummers and trucks happened in 2004.   It took until mid-2005 to up armor all hunners.   While JIDA is still focused on IEDs the additional scope against all improvised threats is designed to anticipate and avoid the kind of battlefield surprise encountered in insurgent use of IEDs.  Some criticized the old JIEDDO as wasting too much money.  However it comes down to the classic efficiency versus effectiveness argument.  When you are running a business you need to maximize efficiency, when you are trying to keep soldiers and marines alive you care more about effectiveness.  The critics’ comments are misplaced.     IED “found and cleared” rates for example went up from 49 percent at the beginning of the 2010 Afghanistan “surge” to 65 percent two years later.  While JIEDDO’s own analysis suggested multiple causes for the improvement the JIEDDO pushed effort to employ hand held detection devices, and the training for them, as well as other initiatives were key factors.  During the same Afghan surge with 30,000 additional U.S. forces going into often untouched Taliban territory IED attacks of course increased, by 25 percent, yet effective attacks decreased 3.1 percent.  The bottom line is U.S. enemies have found a useful tool in the IED and know better than to try and fight the U.S. symmetrically with a peer ground force.  Hence the need for an organization that is focused on anticipating asymmetric threats like the IED.  Look to see JIDA moving into other areas than Counter-IED in the future. --- Colonel Rod Coffey, USA (Ret)

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22 mars 2015 7 22 /03 /mars /2015 08:50
The European Defence Agency is coordinating an effort to develop mobile counter-IED laboratories.(Photo French MoD)

The European Defence Agency is coordinating an effort to develop mobile counter-IED laboratories.(Photo French MoD)

 

March 18, 2015 By Julian Hale – Defense News

 

BRUSSELS — The Netherlands is the lead nation in an EU effort to build two mobile counter-IED labs for use by EU countries at a cost of about €10 million (US $10.6 million).

 

The money will come from an ad hoc EDA budget. The new labs are due to be available for deployment in theater by the end of 2015, according to an EDA official.

 

Coordinated by the European Defence Agency (EDA), Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Spain and Sweden are involved, while other countries have also expressed interest in the project. Only these 12 countries currently can decide on where the labs would be deployed.

 

The goal is to have the labs ready to be deployed within five days and fully operational in a given mission area within 21 days.

 

The aim of the Joint Deployable Exploitation and Analysis Laboratory (JDEAL) is to gather information about IEDs to better understand, identify and reveal IED threat networks. This will enable EU countries to adapt the tactics, techniques and procedures they use in operations and training.

 

The EDA has already issued a tender, which cannot be seen by the general public, to produce two deployable, fully functional laboratories, as well as housing for them. The EDA is currently evaluating offers received by industry in order to design, develop and deliver the JDEAL capability.

 

Asked which companies had responded to the tender, an EDA official said offers had been received but "the names of the companies cannot be disclosed as the evaluation process is ongoing."

 

The technical functionalities required by the tender cover area such as electronics, chemical, media and documentation exploitation, triage, and command and control.

 

After the EDA has finalized contracts with supplier companies, the labs are expected to be ready for deployment in November or December.

Dutch To Develop Counter-IED Labs for EU

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11 mars 2015 3 11 /03 /mars /2015 08:50
Airbus DS Wins Bundeswehr Contract to Supply Intelligent Systems Ensuring Protection Against Roadside Bombs

 

Mar 10, 2015 ASDNews Source : Airbus DS

 

Electronic Jamming System Deactivates Detonation Signals in Real Time

 

Airbus Defence and Space will equip vehicles of the German Armed Forces with an electronic system for the protection against improvised explosive devices (IEDs). The German procurement authority BAAINBw has awarded the company a contract worth several million euros to supply 36 jammers of the type VPJ-R6 (VPJ = Vehicle Protection Jammer). The systems are intended to be integrated into protected vehicles of the German Armed Forces.

 

The Vehicle Protection Jammer uses the ultra-fast SMART Responsive Jamming Technology developed by Airbus Defence and Space to substantially enhance protection compared to conventional systems. It detects and identifies radio signals intended to detonate roadside bombs. After detection and classification, it transmits real-time jamming signals, which precisely match the hostile frequency band, thus interrupting the connection between assassin and bomb.

 

Thanks to new digital receiver and signal processing technologies, the system achieves reaction times of well below a millisecond. Up to 750.000 threat signals in all common frequency bands can be detected and jammed each second. The jamming power is focused on the detonation signal’s specific frequency instead of being distributed over the whole frequency range, as is the case in conventional systems. In this way less energy is required, while the jamming effect is increased at the same time. Moreover, this also reduces the impact on friendly forces’ radio communication, which means that reliable command and control can be ensured.

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2 mars 2015 1 02 /03 /mars /2015 17:55
 « TELEMAX » : le nouveau robot d’intervention NEDEX

 

2 Mars 2015 Source : © Marine nationale

 

Après 30 années de bons et loyaux services et de nombreuses destructions d’IED (Improuve explosive Disposal), le robot d’intervention NEDEX Wheel-Barrow prend sa retraite de la Marine nationale. Ses succès furent nombreux et c’est notamment lui qui avait permis la neutralisation à distance du lot de grenades espagnoles type « LAGUNA » en 2005, huit ans après la tragédie de la gabare la Fidèle  au large de Fermanville ou cinq personnels avaient trouvé la mort et dix sept furent blessés en manipulant ces munitions.

 

Il sera mis en sommeil mais conservera cependant toutes ses capacités et se réveillera si le besoin s’en fait sentir.

 

En 2012, la Marine nationale a sélectionné un nouveau robot plus polyvalent et capable d’exécuter toutes les missions opérationnelles confiées aux groupes de plongeurs-démineurs (GRIP) sur le domaine maritime et à bord des unités embarquées et aux groupes d’intervention dépiègeage (GRID) sur le domaine immobilier de la Marine.

 

En accord avec ALFAN/NEDEX, autorité NEDEX pour la Marine, le service CECLANT/NEDEX a sélectionné un produit d’origine Allemande et c’est tout naturellement outre Rhin, à Stuttgart que ce service s’est rendu en juillet 2014 afin de maitriser parfaitement la machine et ses matériels annexes. Ces robots, acquis en 2014 par la Marine nationale, doivent équiper les unités NEDEX de Brest, Toulon et Cherbourg.

 

Fort de ce savoir faire, le service CECLANT/NEDEX doit maintenant transmettre cet acquis aux forces. La formation au pilotage des robots d'intervention NEDEX type TELEMAX des GRID et des GRIP a débuté en janvier 2015 et se poursuivra jusqu'à l'été. Une centaine de démineurs est à former. Une attestation de stage sera remise à chaque intéressé après validation de cette formation par le service CECLANT/NEDEX.

 

Dès début février à l’issue de la formation de quatre plongeurs-démineurs, le GPD Manche, a regagné son unité de Cherbourg avec le premier TELEMAX livré aux forces. Ce robot va intégrer le tour d’alerte « intervention sur engins explosifs improvisés » (IEEI) assuré toute l’année et 24h/24 par le GPD Manche au profit de COMAR Manche avec une particularité par rapport à Brest, car Cherbourg ne dispose pas de GRID. Le TELEMAX bénéficiera donc d’un domaine d’action très étendu qui lui permettra surement de montrer ses capacités de lutte contre la menace terroriste.

 « TELEMAX » : le nouveau robot d’intervention NEDEX
 « TELEMAX » : le nouveau robot d’intervention NEDEX « TELEMAX » : le nouveau robot d’intervention NEDEX

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26 février 2015 4 26 /02 /février /2015 17:56
CIEL : démineurs de bombes artisanales

 

26/02/2015 ASP Bourceret – Armée de Terre / Economie et technologie

 

Détecter les bombes artisanales, les analyser et les désamorcer : voici les missions du CIEL (Counter-IED Exploitation Laboratory*). Créé afin de protéger le combattant et la population des risques actuels, ce laboratoire regroupe des experts scientifiques militaires.

 

Les engins explosifs improvisés (EEI) sont utilisés fréquemment par les groupes terroristes. Fabriqués artisanalement à partir d’éléments initialement anodins, ils constituent une menace doublement dangereuse par leur banalité et par leurs mécanismes non conventionnels. L’équipe du CIEL est entraînée afin de s’adapter aux risques chimiques, toxiques et radioactifs qu’ils comportent. En phase de validation, le laboratoire compte être déployé en opérations extérieures aux cotés des combattants sur le terrain d’ici fin 2015. Découvrez en images son fonctionnement et son logiciel d’exploitation CYTHARE.

 

* Laboratoire d’exploitation des engins explosifs improvisés

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26 février 2015 4 26 /02 /février /2015 14:55
Démineurs de bombes artisanales

 

26 févr. 2015 Armée de Terre

 

Le laboratoire d’exploitation des engins explosifs improvisés regroupe des experts scientifiques militaires. Il a pour mission de détecter, analyser et désamorcer les bombes artisanales. Il pourra être projeté à l’étranger dès la fin de l’année 2015.

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10 février 2015 2 10 /02 /février /2015 08:50
Counter-IED training photo EDA

Counter-IED training photo EDA

 

Brussels - 06 February, 2015 European Defence Agency

 

Homemade bombs are threats that are not going to go away, and ever closer civil-military cooperation is needed to neutralise them, as EDA Capability, Armament and Technology Director Pete Round explains in this opinion piece originally published by Security Europe.

 

Improvised explosive devices remain the single largest killer of coalition soldiers in the war in Afghanistan – and a favoured weapon of Europe’s home-grown terrorists as well. This has put the devices at the forefront of public debate, with the acronym ‘IED’ now used and widely understood well beyond just military circles.

However, even if they have gained a lot of public attention in the last few years, IEDs are nothing new. With their low cost and ability to cause significant damage they have been the weapon of choice for insurgents fighting technologically superior forces for decades.

 

Biggest threat

With this asymmetric warfare likely to remain the norm, IEDs will continue to be the biggest single threat to our soldiers on the ground – as well as being a growing threat to civilian populations. It is vital that the experience and knowledge gained in fighting IEDs in Afghanistan is not lost. Moreover, we need to ensure the best possible collaboration between military and civilian law enforcement entities.

The European Defence Agency (EDA) has played an important role in ensuring that skills and knowledge in tackling IEDs are maintained. One important element of its counter-IED work is technical exploitation. This refers to the recording and analysing of information related to events, scenes, technical components and the materials used in an IED attack.

The objective of counter-IED exploitation is to gather the technical and tactical data about the attack whilst at the same time identifying the IED “supply chain” in order to gather intelligence about those involved in IED production and use. Exploitation allows bomb disposal experts to better understand the threat they are dealing with, helping them to predict future activity and allowing them to attack the network involved in producing the devices. A number of the EU’s civil security research projects financed by the European Commission aim for similar goals, for example.

Counter-IED exploitation was the rationale behind the 2011-2014 deployment of a multi-national theatre exploitation laboratory in Afghanistan, where it helped disrupt networks making and using IEDs. In parallel to that effort, a new programme, called the “Joint Deployable Exploitation and Analysis Laboratory” (JDEAL) was begun in May 2013. Under Dutch lead, its aim was to establish a permanent IED exploitation training facility in the Netherlands, staffed by a permanent multinational team. Under the project, a further two deployable laboratories could be procured for use in future operations.

 

Pooling and sharing

Initiatives such as JDEAL aim to ensure that the knowledge gained at a considerable price in wartime is not lost to other defence actors, but also made available to the bomb disposal community as a whole, whether military or civil. Indeed, IEDs are not only a threat to our soldiers overseas: for decades, they have also been used against civilians in Europe often with lethal results. They will continue as the weapon of choice for individuals planning terror attacks against Europe’s homeland.

In order to ensure an efficient “spillover” of know-how between these two interconnected worlds, dedicated events have recently been jointly organised by the EDA and Europol. These have brought together experts from as many as 16 different European countries.

The overarching idea is really quite simple: participants take part in realistic training scenarios that involve homemade explosives based on situations experienced in the real world. By doing so, they share best practices and improve their skills through multinational and civil-military cooperation. Even the United States has showed interest in the initiative by sending experts from the FBI and US Department of Justice.

 

Winning the IED war

This combined approach ought to be extended to the whole spectrum of C-IED activities – and not just for the disposal of homemade explosives. Other critical skills, such as exploitation techniques currently tackled via the JDEAL project, are needed to win the IED war.

If we want to effectively predict and prevent further IED-related incidents on the battlefield or the homeland – and develop the means to safely neutralise them in a variety of conditions – then we need to push this civil-military cooperation as far as we can. The lives of European soldiers and citizens might very well depend on it.

 

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29 novembre 2014 6 29 /11 /novembre /2014 18:50
Joint Deployable Exploitation and Analysis Laboratory (JDEAL) - powered by EDA


26 nov. 2014 European Defence Agency - Dutch Ministry of Defence

 

The Joint Deployable Exploitation and Analysis Laboratory (JDEAL), is designed to help continue the fight against improvised explosive devices. The project, launched in 2013 under the auspices of the European Defence Agency (EDA), provides a new permanent technical exploitation training facility based in Soesterberg in the Netherlands.
 

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17 septembre 2014 3 17 /09 /septembre /2014 16:50
Counter-IED experts complete “European Guardian” exercise in Vienna
 
 

A two-week European exercise focused on manual neutralisation of improvised explosive devices (IEDs) has finished in Vienna.

 

From 1 to 12 September 2014, fourteen Counter-IED experts from Austria, Germany, Italy, Ireland, and Sweden took part in an intensive Manual Neutralisation Exercise at the Austrian Army’s Logistics School in Vienna. The exercise was organised by Austria as lead nation in close cooperation with the European Defence Agency (EDA).

Manual neutralisation refers to situations where a trained operator has to manually defuse an improvised explosive device. This occurs when it is not possible to tackle the device remotely, for example when the device is attached to a hostage or with chemical or even radiological material. It is one of the most mentally and technically challenging jobs performed by anyone in the armed forces, requiring high-level skills and training.

The aim of the exercise was to give participants the chance to use and develop  these skills in a highly demanding, multinational environment. Over the two-week period, they were given a series of different and increasingly complex scenarios and devices to deal with. One operator from Ireland, who participated in the exercise, commented, “for most of us, this is only one element of our jobs, thankfully we do not encounter devices like this every day. Training like this is vital, to ensure that we are as sharp and up-to-date as possible when we do encounter a complex device or hostage situation.”

The Austrian officer in charge, explained the advantages of running the course at a European level, “obviously one important element is cost. By pooling demand from different countries with similar needs, we can afford to do more than we would be able to do individually. However, another important part is bringing together operatives from across Europe, learning from each other, and developing a European network of manual neutralisation experts”, he said.

 

Manual Neutralisation Techniques Courses and Exercises

The course is part of the EDA’s Manual Neutralisation Techniques Courses and Exercises programme. It is the second event to be held under the programme in Austria this year, after the completion of the first European Manual Neutralisation Training Course in May. Both the course and exercise made use of specially designed manual neutralisation kits for defusing improvised explosive devices. These kits were purchased by EDA and given to the Austrian Armed Forces to be stored at the logistics school, however they are available on request for operational use by all participating EDA Member States.

 

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12 août 2014 2 12 /08 /août /2014 07:50
La C.A du 1 REG à l'assaut de l'Espagne

 

24-07-2014 source 1e REG - Réf : 386 | 444

 

Pendant une semaine, du 7 au 14 juin 2014 la Compagnie d'appui du 1 REG est partie en Espagne pour réaliser une exercice de grande ampleur en contre déminage.

 

« Interdict » un exercice OTAN de grande ampleur.

 

L’Exercice « Interdict », n’est pas seulement un exercice de contre-IED bilatéral Franco-Espagnol. Sur le camp étaient présent un multitude de nationalités. Espagnols, Français, mais aussi, Américains, Polonais, Emirats Arabes Unis, etc.

Qu’ils soient organisateurs, acteurs ou simplement observateurs, chacun est venu dans l’espoir de pouvoir échanger sur les différentes techniques de déminage, d’ouvertures d’itinéraires et de gestion des incidents etc. L’exercice devait être le plus réaliste possible, c’est ainsi que sur la base d’un Retex[1] les organisateurs Espagnols avaient calqué la carte du Mali sur celle de leurs pays.

 

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4 août 2014 1 04 /08 /août /2014 07:50
Afghanistan : fermeture du laboratoire européen contre-IED de KAIA

 

01/08/2014 Sources : EMA

 

Le 23 juillet 2014, le laboratoire européen d’exploitation technique des engins explosifs improvisés (IED), le MNTEL (Multi National Theater Exploitation Laboratory), situé sur l’aéroport international de Kaboul (KAIA), et commandé par la France, a mis fin à ses activités.

 

Le projet de laboratoire a été initié en 2010 par l’Agence Européenne de Défense (AED) afin de faire face à la multiplication des bombes artisanales frappant les soldats de la coalition, les forces afghanes et les civils. Déployé à titre expérimental au service de la force multinationale en Afghanistan (ISAF), il a été installé sur le camp de Warehouse en 2011, avant d’être transféré sur KAIA en mars 2013. Il est le résultat d’une coopération multinationale associant 9 nations (Autriche, Espagne, Italie, Luxembourg, Pays-Bas, Pologne, Roumanie, Suède, France). Il est commandé par la France depuis sa création, et comptait, avant sa fermeture, 5 militaires français parmi la quinzaine de militaires européens qui l’armaient.

 

Grace à son expertise en explosifs, électronique, chimique et forensique, ce laboratoire se chargeait de l’analyse et l’investigation des différents composants relatifs aux IED au profit de l’ISAF et des forces de sécurité afghanes (Afghan National Security Forces, ANSF).

Au travers de l’analyse des IED, la mission principale du laboratoire était d’avoir une meilleure compréhension du fonctionnement et de l’évolution des IED, afin de permettre l’adaptation des règles comportementales sécuritaires des forces de la coalition.

Le laboratoire était pleinement intégré à la Task-Force PALADIN, tête de chaîne de la lutte contre-IED en Afghanistan. Sa zone d’action s’étendait sur l’ensemble de la région de commandement-capitale (RC-C - Kaboul et sa périphérie).

Au terme de cette mission, les matériels du laboratoire ont été restitués aux nations qui les avaient mis à disposition. Ceux qui appartiennent à l’AED ont été transférés aux Pays-Bas.

Depuis le 1er  juillet 2014, l’évaluation de la dangerosité des composants d’IED a été transférée à l’équipe française EOD (Explosive Ordnance Disposal) de KAIA. L’exploitation technique est réalisée, dans un second temps, à la base aérienne de Bagram, vers laquelle les composants sont transférés par voie aérienne.

 

Le dispositif militaire français actuellement déployé dans le cadre des opérations en Afghanistan et au Tadjikistan est armé par environ 250 militaires qui poursuivent la mission de l’ISAF jusqu’à la fin de l’année 2014.

Afghanistan : fermeture du laboratoire européen contre-IED de KAIA
Afghanistan : fermeture du laboratoire européen contre-IED de KAIA
Afghanistan : fermeture du laboratoire européen contre-IED de KAIA

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9 juillet 2014 3 09 /07 /juillet /2014 11:35
The changing role of a SCIAD


02.07.2014 DSTL
 

Dick Livesey deployed to Camp Bastion in Afghanistan as Scientific Adviser for six months from September 2013. This was his second tour. When not on tour, Dick works in the Blast & IED Protection Team at the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl).

 

I don’t know whether you’ve ever been on holiday as a guest of somebody else’s family? If so, you’ll remember that the last day consists of everybody frantically packing up, cleaning things and stuffing it all in the car. You’d love to be able to help but, as you don’t really know how anything works or where anything goes, there’s limited help you can provide.

That’s what I thought being the Dstl Scientific Adviser (SCIAD) in Afghanistan this time around would be like.

Dstl has provided deployed SCIADs to Afghanistan for some time now and as a result we’ve got very good at it. Advice on how to combat changes in enemy threats and tactics has led to immediate short term fixes and longer term solutions. So now that the situation has changed to one in which getting us home safely, quickly and efficiently is just as important as success on the ground, the advice that Dstl provides has had to change as well.

The first challenge is to continue to support current operations whilst steadily removing capabilities. Finding ways of doing more with less is prime SCIAD territory and Dstl has played a part in helping to ensure that, even as we leave Afghanistan, we are as well equipped, protected and informed as we have ever been. This has included everything from increasing vehicle protection by reusing armour taken from redeployed vehicles, to simple pieces of software which can hugely speed up patrol tracking and tracing.

The next challenge is to carry on living safely in a shrinking Main Operating Base. Getting ill, tired or too hot in Afghanistan aren’t just annoyances – they can be game-changing for our troops. While this is one of the busiest times at Camp Bastion, it is also the one in which many of the comforts and conveniences are being reduced. So that everybody can continue to do their jobs safely, Dstl has provided advice on healthcare, energy use and fatigue management.

The final challenge is ensuring that what we leave behind is fit for purpose. This includes for both the Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF) and our own presence at the Afghan National Army Officer Academy in Kabul. SCIADs have helped develop the ANSF counter IED capability and worked on the human sciences aspects of deployments to support Afghan-led and partnered operations.

In addition to the huge efforts to get our people and equipment home in good order, UK forces are still really keen to support ongoing research. For example, improvements in Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR), detection and protection, currently being tested in the heat of Afghanistan, will benefit operations for years to come.

So while this deployment was very different to my previous tour, it certainly wasn’t the frantic pack up I had envisaged before I left!

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3 juillet 2014 4 03 /07 /juillet /2014 10:50
Law Enforcement and Military Combine Efforts at the First European Homemade Explosives Course

 

Brussels - 02 July, 2014 European Defence Agency
 

Experts from the civilian law enforcement and the military have taken part in the first European Homemade Explosives Training course which took place between 2 and 6 June in the Curragh Camp at the IE Department of Defence Ordnance School.

 

The course, run jointly by the European Defence Agency and Europol, brought together 28 experts from 16 different countries.  The participants took part in highly realistic training scenarios involving homemade explosives, in order to improve skills and to share best practices. The training consisted of identifying, processing, and disposing of different types of  homemade explosives that can be found in improvised laboratories, such as those of criminals and/or terrorists.

The cooperation between EDA and Europol reflects the need for a combined civil-military approach to the threat not only of homemade explosives but the whole C-IED spectrum. This approach helps to ensure that there are clear lines of communication between the two and the need to share skills and experiences among military and civilian law enforcement agencies.

 

EU-US Cooperation

The course also showed the increasingly close ties between EU and US actors in the field of explosives security and safety issues with participation and support from the United States Department of Justice (DOJ), Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).

The course received very positive feedback from participants, with organisers looking at the possibility of arranging a second course to meet the high level of demand. 

The course forms part of EDA’s comprehensive approach to tackling improvised explosive devices (IEDs). These efforts include areas such as  the counter-IED Technical exploitation lab Level 2 Multinational Technical Exploitation Laboratory, MNTEL (D) which  has been stationed in Afghanistan since 2011, a Manual Neutralisation Techniques Category B programme, for which the first exercise will be held in September in Vienna (1 to 12 September), the Joint Deployable Exploitation Analysis laboratory (JDEAL) initiative, which its operational life is intended to start in November 2014 as well as another ongoing C IED related activities and projects.

 

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7 avril 2014 1 07 /04 /avril /2014 17:54
Dossier lutte contre IED

 

source Armée de Terre

 

Sur le territoire comme en opération, la France est régulièrement confrontée au danger des IED. Avec l'Afghanistan, la menace est devenue intensive et l'armée de Terre a dû s'adapter. depuis 2008, il ne s'agit plus seulement de se protéger, mais d'intervenir en amont pour prévoir et empêcher.

 

IED, qu’est-ce que c’est ?

Les engins explosifs improvisés (EEI ou IED en anglais) est « un dispositif mis en place ou réalisé de façon improvisée qui contient des produits chimiques destructeurs, mortels, nuisibles, ...

 

[Lutte contre-IED] : IED, menace explosive !

Les engins explosifs improvisés (EEI ou IEDen anglais), c’est-à-dire des engins à base d’explosifs réalisés de façon artisanale et improvisée, ne constituent pas une menace nouvelle. Mais ...

 

[Lutte contre-IED] : Témoignage d’un artificier démineur

Neutraliser un engin explosif improvisé (EEI) est une mission délicate, notamment en Afghanistan. L’armée de Terre possède plusieurs unités d’experts capables de traiter cette menace. ...

 

[Lutte contre-IED] l’attaque des réseaux

Sur son territoire comme en opération, la France est régulièrement confrontée au danger des IED. Avec l’Afghanistan, la menace est devenue intensive, et l’armée de Terre a dû s’adapter. ...

 

[Lutte contre-IED] : la formation des spécialistes

La formation a été revue et adaptée. La création du nouveau Pôle Interarmées de traitement du danger des munitions et des explosifs (PIAM) en 2011, notamment de son centre de formation a ...

 

[Lutte contre IED] : l’équipement en perpétuelle évolution

En matière de détection et de reconnaissance, les matériels classiques restent en course (détecteur de métaux, détecteur de lignes électriques, robot,) et s’étoffent. Le SOUVIM et le .

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14 octobre 2013 1 14 /10 /octobre /2013 16:55
Afghanistan : transfert d’autorité du détachement Epidote

14/10/2013 Sources : EMA

 

Le 3 octobre 2013 au camp Phoenix de Kaboul, le général de brigade aérienne Olivier Taprest, commandant les forces françaises en Afghanistan, a présidé la cérémonie de transfert d’autorité du détachement Epidote qui assure des missions de formation de l’armée afghane. Le colonel Philippe Vervaeke a succédé au colonel Thomas Seignon au commandement de ce détachement.

 

Au cours des six derniers mois, le détachement Epidote32 a mené sa mission de mentorat au profit de l’armée nationale afghane (ANA) au sein de cinq centres afghans de formation. Le contingent a ainsi appuyé les instructeurs de la National Military Academy of Afghanistan (NMAA), du Command and Staff College (CSC), qui constituent les écoles de formation des officiers afghans, et partagé son expertise au sein de plusieurs centres et écoles : l’Intelligence Training Center (ITC) pour le renseignement, la Command and Service Support School (CSS) pour les domaines des finances et des ressources humaines, et enfin l’Armor Branch School (ABS) qui forme les bataillons blindés afghans.

 

La mission du détachement Epidote est au cœur du partenariat avec les forces de sécurité afghanes qui, après s’être axé sur la formation des cadres, s’articule désormais autour du conseil des instructeurs afghans. Pour le colonel Philippe  Vervaeke, l’objectif de son détachement est clair, « accomplir la mission en soutenant avec énergie les officiers afghans dans leur volonté de reconstruire leur pays ».

 

Le détachement français Epidote relève de l’état-major du Nato training mission – Afghanistan,qui coordonne et assure la cohérence de l’ensemble des efforts des nations contributrices participant à la formation des forces de sécurité afghanes, (polices et armées). Il est l’unique interlocuteur du ministère de la défense afghan, qu’il assiste pour établir un système de formation militaire complet et durable.

 

Environ 90 militaires français composent le contingent Epidote 33. Actuellement, 500 militaires sont chargés de poursuivre l’engagement français jusqu’à la fin de la mission de l’ISAF en 2014, à travers notamment le commandement de l’aéroport de KAIA, le fonctionnement de l’hôpital médico-chirurgical militaire français de KAIA, des missions de formation au profit de l’armée nationale afghane, la participation aux fonctions d’état-major dans les structures de l’ISAF et le commandement du laboratoire européen contre-IED.

Afghanistan : transfert d’autorité du détachement EpidoteAfghanistan : transfert d’autorité du détachement Epidote
Afghanistan : transfert d’autorité du détachement Epidote

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9 octobre 2013 3 09 /10 /octobre /2013 11:50
C-IED Manual Neutralisation Techniques Courses and Exercises
Brussels | Oct 08, 2013 European Defence Agency
 

Austria, Belgium, Germany, Ireland, Italy and Sweden signed today a Letter of Intent expressing their interest in pooling resources and expertise for the setting up of a shared C-IED Manual Neutralisation Techniques courses and exercises capacity. Improvised Explosive Devices continue to pose significant threat to military and civilian personnel. In some cases complex explosive devices have to be neutralised manually.

 
Member States (MS) earlier this year expressed their wish to increase efforts on Manual Neutralisation Techniques (MNT) due to an urgent but limited requirement which does not justify separate, national training programmes in this cost-intensive area. Austria as lead nation proposed and developed a four year MNT project under the umbrella of the Pooling & Sharing Countering IED Training initiative with the intention to conduct one MNT course and exercise a year. The training of Manual Neutralisers is highly cost-intensive due to equipment and specialist’s advisory role. The role of Manual Neutralisers is life saving and is a priority for participating Member States.

 

With today’s letter of intent, the signatory countries express their interest to cooperate in the development of a project arrangement and to participate in the project. 

 

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23 juillet 2013 2 23 /07 /juillet /2013 07:35
Dans la peau d’un Formateur C-IED en Afghanistan

17/07/2013 sources EMA

 

Le commandant Sébastien est en mission depuis peu de temps, avec son équipe sur le camp Mike Spann au nord de l’Afghanistan.

 

Le commandant est formateur C-IED (contre – IED). Autrement dit, il a pour mission de former les membres de la coalition mais aussi les forces afghanes contre la menace IED (Improvised Explosive Devices) ou EEC (Engins Explosifs de Circonstance) : « Je donne aux chefs de convoi les techniques qui leur permettront de détecter la présence d’un IED. Ils sont souvent placés aux mêmes endroits, appelés « hot spot », comme les passages à gué ou les zones sablonneuses. En cas de doute, je leur apprends les méthodes pour placer le convoi en sécurité et prévenir ainsi un second piège. En aucun cas ils ne doivent toucher à un IED » explique le commandant Sébastien.

 

Le commandant Sébastien n’appartient pas à l’arme du génie, l’arme des démineurs. Chef de la section opérations du bureau maintenance, opération, instruction (BMOI) du 3e régiment du matériel (3e RMAT) de Muret, il a suivi, en 2010, une formation d’instructeur contre-IED délivrée par l’OTAN.

 

Dans la peau d’un Formateur C-IED en Afghanistan

Lors de sa première mission en Afghanistan en 2009 au sein des Operational Mentoring Liaison Team (OMLT), il prend conscience de la menace IED. C’est donc tout naturellement qu’il effectue la formation récemment créee par l’OTAN. Aujourd’hui il dirige une équipe de formateurs composée d’un polonais et d’une anglaise. « Les équipes changent souvent et il faut s’adapter en permanence. Je profite de l’expérience et de la façon d’enseigner de chacun. Sur cette mission je dispose de la rigueur polonaise et du flegme britannique ». L’anglais est la langue de travail. Après plusieurs mois, Sébastien la maitrise parfaitement mais son accent fait toujours autant sourire les anglophones. « Travailler dans un milieu Otanien est très enrichissant. On découvre les particularismes des autres nations, on échange des mots dans toutes les langues et l’on tisse rapidement un réseau de contacts dans des dizaines de pays »

Dans la peau d’un Formateur C-IED en Afghanistan

Sur le camp Mike Spann, Sébastien et son équipe doivent assurer une formation de 5 jours au profit des officiers et des sous-officiers du 209e Kandak de l’armée Afghane. Lorsque tous les élèves sont présents, l’équipe débute sa présentation par quelques mots en Dari pour détendre l’atmosphère. «J’aime travailler avec eux, ils sont sensibles au fait qu’on essaie de créer de bonnes relations avec eux. En fin de stage, si je suis invité à prendre le thé et qu’ils me demandent quand je reviens, c’est qu’ils sont content de mon travail ».

Dans la peau d’un Formateur C-IED en Afghanistan

Après le Nord de l’Afghanistan, le commandant Sébastien partira dans l’est, à Herat, pour assurer une formation au profit de l’armée italienne et espagnole. « J’adore ce travail. J’ai horreur de rester derrière mon bureau à Bagram et ne loupe pas une occasion de partir sur le terrain » ajoute-t-il.

Dans la peau d’un Formateur C-IED en Afghanistan

L’emploi du temps du commandant Sébastien est complet pour les 2 prochains mois. Homme de relations, il profite de chaque mission pour créer de nouveaux contacts et promouvoir la formation CIED. Du coup, les demandes de nouvelles formations s’accumulent, venant aussi bien de la coalition que des forces afghanes. « Si cette formation permet de sauver la vie d’un soldat, alors j’aurai rempli ma mission ».

Dans la peau d’un Formateur C-IED en Afghanistan

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10 juillet 2013 3 10 /07 /juillet /2013 07:20
What does the future hold for JIEDDO? Three options on the table...

07/08/2013  Andrew Elwell - defenceiq.com

 

One of the big questions relating to the reorganisation of the Armed Forces following the withdrawal from Afghanistan relates to the future of Joint Improvised Explosive Device Defeat Organization (JIEDDO). Will it still be an operational necessity or is the argument for its continued economic outlay too fragile?

 

The unit was formed in 2006 after a spate of deadly incidents involving the roadside bombs forced the US government to act. JIEDDO has been central to informing opinion on IEDs for a decade but senior US defence officials are now discussing its future. There are three options being considered: maintain JIEDDO’s capabilities but split its duties between the military forces; scale down its operations and house it within the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD); or shut it down.

 

Colonel Gareth Bex, Head of Army EOD & Search at the UK MoD, is a man who would have an opinion on JIEDDO’s future effectiveness. He spoke at the Counter-IED conference in London last month and insisted that “the genie is out of the bottle [for insurgents and their effective use of IEDs], and there’s no way it’s going back in.”

 

Col Bex went on to say that the UK failed to continue the investment it made in this area after Northern Ireland and lost the mainstay of its C-IED capabilities as a result. When protection against IEDs and mine blasts wasn't top of the agenda anymore it was easy for that investment to be directed into other avenues. Bex wonders if the same may happen again post-Afghanistan, especially considering the current economic climate. But it mustn't. The lessons learned from Afghanistan must not be allowed to be forgotten like they were after Northern Ireland - the only way to do that is maintain investment in the area and continue to take the threat seriously.

 

“IEDs are certainly an enduring global threat,” said Col Bex.

 

With that in mind, how can the US justify the elimination of JIEDDO? It would be imprudent, and short-sighted.

 

While breaking up the organisation and spreading it out through the military services – a process known as disaggregation – is a viable option, the best, and perhaps most likely option for the JIEDDO may be to roll it into the OSD.

 

JIEDDO has spent in the region of $20 billion since 2006, including the largest and most ambitious UOR programme ever for the design and acquisition of the Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) family of vehicles.

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25 avril 2013 4 25 /04 /avril /2013 16:50
Optima’s C-IED training for UK MoD receives 2013 best initiative award

 

25 April 2013 army-technology.com

 

Optima Defence and Security's counter improvised explosive device (C-IED) training programme to the UK military personnel has been awarded the 'Best Counter IED/Successful Deployment Initiative' at the 2013 Counter Terror Expo Excellence Awards in London, UK.

 

Designed to address the UK Ministry of Defence's (MoD) security training requirements in Afghanistan, Optima designed and delivered training for a new handheld detector (HHD) capabilities to 700 frontline British soldiers during a ten week relief-in-place period.

 

Optima senior C-IED and search instructor Jim Scott said the introduction of each new capability adds a significant training burden to the MoD, which is constantly under pressure to develop new C-IED capabilities to address the ever changing battlefield threats.

 

"Defence is under considerable strain to deliver operational effectiveness with shrinking resources, and with military manpower in high demand, using a credible contractor was really the best option," Scott said.

 

"That's where we came in. We developed the course and provided a ten-man team, deployed for nine weeks with the sole purpose of delivering the training, producing all course materials and documentation."

 

The company took around seven weeks to design the course, organise the logistics and provide trained operators at the earliest opportunity.

 

Around 697 personnel were trained by the company, with 690 deemed sufficiently skilled at the end of the programme.

 

Optima managing director Keith Hammond said the company has successfully demonstrated the advantages of contractor-delivered C-IED training through this training programme.

 

"Enhancing capacity and delivering training against short timescales are notable advantages, providing the MoD with flexibility and managing risk," Hammond added.

 

"It is a relatively new concept, but once established I have no doubt that outsourcing training will become a very attractive option to government defence bodies."

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