1 (German/Netherlands) Corps spent last week in the lead of the German Flag Officers Exercise (FOX) in the Polish city of Szczecin near the German border. 1 GNC Deputy Commander, Major General Stephan Thomas was the exercise director. Nearly all Generals in the German Army and all Brigade Commanders of the Dutch Army took part. They were confronted with numerous realistic scenarios. Thereon, the Flag Officers would work on their solutions in syndicates.
The situations that had to be dealt with were tough planning and decision-making scenarios that found their realistic origin in the ring of instability around Europe: the Middle East, the Baltic States and North-Africa. Afterwards, it was up to the experts – both from 1 GNC and external – to discuss their actions with the commanders so all could learn from the choices made. The main focus lay on the requirements and criteria for successful planning and guidance of land operations on a strategic and operational level, without forgetting the cooperation with Governmental- and Non-Governmental Organisations, Host Nation and other Multinational partners.
A number of guest speakers also made an appearance, giving background to the scenarios. Among them: Retired Air Force Major General Charles Dunlap, executive director of the Center on Law, Ethics and National Security in Duke University; Hans Wesseling, the Consul-General for The Netherlands in St. Petersburg in Russia; and Stefan Meister, the leader of the Robert Bosch Center for Middle- and Eastern Europe, Russia and Central Asia.
The aim of the German Chief of the Army, Lieutenant General Vollmer, for this annual exercise is to create a forum for the leading officers of the Army. Here, they have the possibility to exchange thoughts about mission related questions and develop a common understanding concerning upcoming mission preparations and trainings. 1 GNC, as a Professional Training Platform proved more than capable to host an exercise of this caliber. The Corps was supported by the local knowledge of the Multinational Corps Northeast.