Wednesday, October 1, 2008
"Vibrant Response" U.S. Nuke Scenario
* With the U.S now in de facto bankruptcy, perhaps the elites only response left will truly be a truly "vibrant" one , a ten kiloton nuke in the American heartland. THAT would get people's minds off their savings accounts.
U.S. Army conducting training exercises in cities, towns
Soldiers at Great Lakes Naval Station, Ill., practice skills they will use when their units assume a consequence management response mission Oct. 1. Photo by U.S. Army North
FORT STEWART, Ga. (Army News Service, Sept. 29, 2008) - The exercise scenario was a sobering one: a 10-kiloton nuclear device detonated in America's heartland, quickly overwhelming civilian responders.
Military leaders who recently trained for this response say they are now thinking differently about how to move equipment, extract the injured and take care of people following this type of attack.
Their insights came from "Vibrant Response," a week-long command post exercise designed to train the commanders and staff of the nation's dedicated force for responding to chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear and high-yield explosive incidents, or CBRNE incidents.
The units completed the exercise Sept. 18 at Fort Stewart, Ga., just two weeks before their force, the CBRNE Consequence Management Response Force, or CCMRF, will be assigned to U.S. Northern Command to begin its mission. "
Assigning them will allow Northern Command to directly influence the operational and training focus of the forces and ensure a trained and ready response force when needed," said Col. Lou Vogler, chief of future operations at U.S. Army North.
U.S. Army North conducted the exercise while its subordinate, Joint Task Force Civil Support, provided command and control for the CCMRF.
Joint Task Force Civil Support -- based at Fort Monroe, Va. -- plans, trains, develops policy and determines the way ahead for DOD CBRNE response, said the force's commander, Army Maj. Gen. Daniel "Chip" Long.
Commanders and staff in the three task forces - Operations, Medical and Aviation - say that the academics and command post exercise offered valuable new perspectives for the Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Marines assuming this important mission.Task Force OperationsResponding to a catastrophic chemical, nuclear or biological attack is challenging because there is no notice and it requires a fast response, Long said.
Developing the capability to deploy rapidly was a priority for the infantry unit assigned to the force, according to Army Maj. Marc Cloutier, planner for the 1st Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division. The unit forms the core of Task Force Operations, one of the three functional task forces within CCMRF.
It's the first infantry brigade to be assigned to NORTHCOM for a year in order to respond quickly to civil-support missions.
Cloutier said that one apparent challenge for the brigade will be turning an infantryman into a truck driver or a first responder. However, Cloutier said, the Soldiers and NCOs in the brigade are smart and adaptable and can easily learn to drive a truck or use a chain saw given a little instruction.
"When I got to the unit in July, I looked at the mission and realized the biggest challenge was going to be organizing to become rapidly deployable," he said. "I knew we would have to preposition containers and equipment to deploy ourselves on very short notice.
"The brigade also began working with the division and the garrison at Fort Stewart to ensure there were mechanisms in place to support a short-notice deployment, Cloutier said.
Once the exercise started, the brigade planners looked at how to reorganize their habitual formations from an infantry or armor battalion in order to accomplish the mission.
"Do we want to take our internal assets and develop functional task forces like engineering, decontamination, heavy movement, and search and rescue, or do we want to develop multifaceted task forces and assign them by region?" he asked. Their conclusion? That configurations would likely change based on the type of catastrophe or the size of the geographical area."We're developing something of a playbook from everything we do here," Cloutier said. "We'll capture everything and keep it on the shelf so if we see a similar situation down the road, we're starting that much further along." (Article cont....)