Friday, March 11, 2011

In the memory of Bagdiji

A programme is being organised in the memory of Bagdiji, ex chairperson of M.P. PUCL on 13th March 2011 in Indore. Medha Patkar and Sudha Bharadwaj will be addressing the meeting on the issue of Democracy and Law.
The programme will be held at Golden Jubilee Auditorium hallSGSITS Engg. College Campus, Indore at 5.30 pm. An invitaion in hindi is also attached.Please click on image to  view the invitation in bigger size. For more detail you may contact: 
09893192740 (Vineet), 
09827021000 (Pramod), 
09424577474 (Ashok)

Female Osprey Pilot Completes Training

Face of Defense

By Stefan T. Bocchino 377th Air Base Wing
KIRTLAND AIR FORCE BASE, N.M., March 10, 2011 - After nearly three years of flight training, an Air Force officer has become the first qualified female pilot of the CV-22 Osprey tilt-rotor aircraft.
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Air Force 1st Lt. Candice Killian is the first woman to qualify as a CV-22 Osprey pilot. U.S. Air Force photo by Stefan T. Bocchino
"I had two major influences for initially getting interested in flying," 1st Lt. Candice Killian said. "One was my grandfather. He flew civilian aircraft. I never got to see them, because I was too young, but I saw pictures of them at his house and he would tell me stories. The other was a friend who flew. His father was in the Air Force. When my friend went to the Air Force Academy, he encouraged me to learn to fly."
Killian said she went to her local airport to look into flying lessons. Within 18 months, she completed her private pilot's license and decided she wanted to join the Air Force to make a positive difference, serve her country and fulfill her desire to fly. She went to the Air Force Academy to start her training.
"I found out that I was going to fly for the Air Force my senior year at the academy," Killian said. "The undergraduate pilot training track is very broad at first, but you find out where you're going at the academy at what we call '100 days.' It's a dinner and a celebration where they tell you where you're going to go. It's your senior year, and you finally know where you're going."
From the academy, Killian went to initial pilot training at Laughlin Air Force Base, Texas. The initial training, on the T-6A Texan II training aircraft, took about six months and included flight training and academics. After that, she went to Fort Rucker, Ala., to learn how to fly the UH-1 Huey helicopter.
"I knew I wanted to fly helicopters," Killian said. "I like the mission role that helicopters in the Air Force generally fly, the broad spectrum of things we can do. Upon completion of the course at Fort Rucker, you can get CV-22s, UH-1s or HH-60 [Pave Hawks]. The mission of the Osprey is very appealing."
After undergraduate pilot training, Killian was chosen to train as a pilot on the CV-22. The initial training took place in a joint program with the Marine Corps at Air Station New River, N.C. All Air Force CV-22 pilots complete the Marine course, where they are taught general aircraft systems and the basics about flying a tilt-rotor aircraft.
"Working with the Marines was a lot of fun and really fulfilling," she said. "To experience their culture and how they train was awesome. I had the opportunity to be instructed by them and see the different learning styles they used."
After training with the Marines, Killian came here to complete her CV-22-unique mission training with the 58th Special Operations Wing.
"I didn't find out I was the first female pilot until they chose me," she said. "I remember being told, 'You're the first.' It's an honor that they would choose me. It's nice to be a part of this elite organization."
Each pilot who graduates from CV-22 training receives a coin from the commander, with a number signifying where they fall in the training pipeline, said Air Force Lt. Col. Larry Riddick, 71st Special Operations Squadron commander. Killian's number is 97.
"She's done very well in the course," Riddick said. "It's been fantastic having her here, and I look forward to hearing about her career."
From here, Killian will move on to her next duty station at Hurlburt Field, Fla.
"I want to continue to do well," she said. "For all those who have influenced me along the way, I can't thank them enough. Without them, I probably would not be here. I want to thank everyone for their positive guidance." 

Africom Bids Farewell to Ward, Welcomes Ham

By Karen Parrish 
American Forces Press Service

SINDELFINGEN, Germany, March 9, 2011 - The Defense Department's newest combatant command bid farewell to its inaugural commander here today.
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U.S. Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates passes the colors to U.S. Army Gen. Carter F. Ham, incoming commander of U.S. Africa Command, while U.S. Army Gen. William E. "Kip" Ward, outgoing commander, left, looks on during the change-of-command ceremony in Sindelfingen, Germany, March 9, 2011. DOD photo by Cherie Cullen 
Army Gen. William E. "Kip" Ward passed the reins of U.S. Africa Command to Army Gen. Carter F. Ham after nearly three years at the helm.
Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates officiated at the ceremony and spoke to the audience at the Sindelfingen city hall near Africom's headquarters in Stuttgart.
"First and foremost, I'd like to thank the men and women serving at Africom who, under General Ward's leadership, successfully tackled the challenge of setting up a new combatant command," Gates said. "The first leader of any organization defines it more than any other.
"In under three years, General Ward has forged a command that ably protects vital U.S. interests, promotes stability and builds key capabilities among our allies," Gates added.
The secretary praised Ward's decades of service, which included 13 command and numerous staff assignments.
"When we first announced the creation of Africom, with its regional focus and institutional inclusion of State and [U.S. Agency for International Development] personnel, there was -- to put it mildly -- a certain amount of skepticism," Gates said.
As he said then and still believes, the secretary noted, "When crime, terrorism, natural disasters, economic turmoil, ethnic fissures and disease can be just as destabilizing as traditional military threats, we need to fuse old understandings of security with new concepts of how security, stability and development go hand in hand."
Ward put those concepts into action as commander, Gates said, and Ham will be an able successor.
AFRICOM stood up in October 2007 as the newest unified combatant command of the U.S. Department of Defense. As one of six that are regionally focused, it is devoted solely to Africa and conducts sustained security engagement through military-to-military programs and activities with African countries.
During the ceremony, Gates presented Ward with the Defense Distinguished Service Medal, and the general's wife, Joyce, with the Distinguished Public Service Award.
Marine Corps Gen. James E. Cartwright, vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, also spoke at the ceremony, noting that Ward has served with distinction during his long career.
"[He] has been a soldier for over 40 years, a statesman, a commander -- battle-hardened," Cartwright said. Ward and his spouse have done "a fantastic job" in Africom, he added.
"It has been, and will be, their legacy," the vice chairman said.
Ward spoke before officially handing the command over to Ham, and said partnership was the key to his approach as Africom commander.
"We make a difference," he said. "And not because we teach someone how to shoot straight, or how to drop a bomb accurately, or how to drive a ship in the right direction, but because by partnering with our friends and teammates, they see the best of America."
Ham spoke briefly at the ceremony's conclusion, pledging to continue the command's mission to help find "African solutions to African security challenges."

Ward began his military career as an infantry officer in 1971. He has served in a variety of positions, including that of commander from company to division level.
Ham most recently served as commander of U.S. Army Europe and as co-chair of the Defense Department's special "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" review board.
Robert M. Gates
Marine Corps Gen. James E. Cartwright 

Army Gen. Carter F. Ham 
Related Sites:
Special Report: Travels With Gates 
U.S. Africa Command
Gates Remarks
Photo Essay
Related Articles:
Africom Helps Nations Build Secure Future 
General Outlines U.S. Mission, Challenges in Africa

Click photo for screen-resolution imageU.S. Army Gen. Carter F. Ham, incoming commander of U.S. Africa Command, addresses the audience during the command's change-of-command ceremony in Sindelfingen, Germany, March 9, 2011. U.S. Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates presided over the ceremony in which U.S. Army Gen. William E. "Kip" Ward, the first commander of U.S. Africa Command, handed over the reins to Ham. DOD photo by Cherie Cullen 

Instructors Strive for Realism at Civilian Course

By Elaine Wilson 
American Forces Press Service

MUSCATATUCK URBAN TRAINING CENTER, Ind., March 9, 2011 - Rory Aylward sits on the edge of his seat -- pen poised over an already ink-stained page -- as he observes a scenario involving U.S. and Afghan officials.
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Rory Aylward evaluates students during the Civilian Expeditionary Workforce's predeployment training course at Muscatatuck Urban Training Center, Ind., Feb. 10, 2011. The 11-day course equips civilians with the skills needed to successfully support combat and humanitarian missions in Afghanistan, Iraq and other locations around the world. DOD photo by Elaine Wilson 
Aylward watches as a female U.S. team leader speaks to an Afghan security forces official through an interpreter, and studies the Americans seated by her side.
In a few minutes, he'll share his critique of the leader's performance and provide his insight into the Afghan people. But for now, Aylward sits back, a crooked grin on his face, as he reflects on the hundreds of scenarios he's witnessed here, and the mistakes he's seen students repeat again and again.
"There's a tendency among all people, but especially among Americans, to think people are like us and they're not," said Aylward, who'd served in Afghanistan as the Nuristan provincial reconstruction team's civil affairs officer in 2008. "Good manners in the United States are not necessarily good manners in Afghanistan."
As an instructor for the Civilian Expeditionary Workforce's predeployment training here, it's Aylward's job to prepare civilians from varying backgrounds and levels of expertise for yearlong deployments to locations around the world, including Afghanistan and Iraq. The program formally stood up in January 2009 to supplement military forces in Iraq, and later on, Afghanistan.
Aylward, a major in the U.S. Army reserve, and the other instructors have just 11 days to ready civilians for the realities of work and life in austere conditions and under the stressors of war. But those days are packed with instruction and scenarios.
"Overwhelmingly they do very well," Aylward said of his students. "They get it. It's not going to be like [their] other job."
The students participate in classes and a series of scenarios to familiarize themselves to their upcoming overseas assignments. They interact with Afghan and Iraqi role players to sharpen their communication and negotiation skills, and are taught cultural awareness and sensitivities, personal security, counterinsurgency, command structures, how to work with an interpreter, as well as how to become part of a team comprising primarily military members.
Training runs the gamut of big-picture missions to boots-on-the-ground knowledge. They travel to training each day in a convoy with soldiers –- all Indiana National Guard members -- protecting them as they move in and out of buildings, and they return each night to an austere mock forward operating base.
The course includes two types of cultural training, Aylward explained. The first is learning how to operate in Iraq and Afghanistan, and the other is learning how to operate within the U.S. military.
To boost their cultural awareness, students take turns playing the lead at a series of scenarios with Afghan or Iraqi officials. They're tasked with discussing everything from stalled construction projects to security issues to problems with pay.
Instructors go to great lengths to create a sense of realism, Aylward said. Each meeting room is draped with the host nation's flag, and artifacts of the nation are placed around the room. The Iraqi and Afghan role players all are Iraqis and Afghans living in the United States now, but who held similar roles in their home countries. An Afghan police chief, for example, was a former police chief in his nation, and the man who role-plays an Iraqi general is a retired Iraqi general.
The scenarios also integrate real-world events, noted Chris Caimano, a CEW training analyst and former Marine who helped to develop the training program.
"Stalled construction sites, corruption, waste and abuse, we try to hit on all of them," he said. "All of those major issues we see in theater."
During scenarios, students speak to the officials through an interpreter, which takes a special skill-set in and of itself. Students, for example, have a tendency to look at the interpreter rather than the official, Aylward explained.
Evaluators look for this tendency and others as they observe the students' performance and offer insights and corrections. Each scenario, he added, is followed by a "hot wash," in which evaluators give civilian students tips on what they may have done wrong or areas of improvement.
Earlier that day, Aylward discussed potential issues surrounding pay. On pay day in Afghanistan for example, he explained, workers will take their money and head home. People there don't have direct deposit or bank cards, so they hand-deliver money to their family. It's wise to keep that in mind when work remains to be done the next day, he said.
Aylward also delves into Afghan culture to convey the similarities, and differences.
"People in Afghanistan are in some ways very much like Americans, they're very independent, fierce warriors. They're smart, very entrepreneurial," he said. "On the other hand ... their cultural sensibilities, particularly about religion, are very different than in the U.S."
Lessons learned now can avoid major issues down the line, he said.
"It's better they make a mistake here among friends who are going to mentor them and coach them than they go meet the line director for education in Afghanistan and offend them and ruin their relationship for the rest of the year," he said.
Instructors take the same care to educate civilian students about the military. While some of the students are veterans with several deployments under their belts, others never have served in the military, or worked alongside troops in any capacity. And students, Aylward explained, can range from Humvee mechanics to senior advisors and decision makers.
For all to be successful, he noted, the students must learn to adapt to a military mind-set and become a seamless member of the team.
"The Army is a culture in and of itself," Aylward said, using his service as an example. "They do things differently and can be a fairly rigid in their thinking. On the other hand, they're much more adaptable than a lot of people in civilian life."
Civilians must learn how to operate and be comfortable in a military environment to thrive, he said. "What we want for the students is, when they get to Afghanistan and have a problem, to feel comfortable enough to go to that young sergeant and say, 'Sergeant, my body armor doesn't fit right,' or 'What do you want me to do on the Humvee?'"
That comfort level will enable them to fit seamlessly into the team and ensure they're fully engaged with security, he explained.
This knowledge not only is beneficial to civilians while they're deployed, but also is advantageous upon their return.
"When they get back to their office job and cubicle, they will have a much better appreciation for [the conditions] that soldiers and Marines and airmen and sailors work with at their day-to-day jobs," he said. "I think it helps them understand the struggles of the average kid in the field."
Students also are taught military command structure so they'll understand how joint operations work, who they're required to report to, and how they fit into the big-picture mission.
Even veterans may need a refresher, Caimano noted. People who served five, 10, 15 years ago may be familiar with the military, but given the operations tempo, a lot may have changed since.
"When I was in [the Marine Corps], doing two tours of combat made you a legend," he said. "Nowadays, there are officers who have gone on seven tours."
The goal is to ensure civilians are ready to serve in every aspect, for as soon as they depart, they're part of something much bigger than themselves, Aylward said.
"What you do is going to impact the lives of other people," he said. "You have to accept that. You have to do what's required of you, expected of you in order to safeguard the lives of other people."
Challenges aside, civilian students perform remarkably well across the board, Aylward said. They represent different services and backgrounds, but all are volunteers who share a common desire to support the wartime mission.
"I really am impressed with people who are willing to step up to the plate," he said of his students. "It's a really demanding job and it's not for everyone. The people who are willing to step up and do it should be commended for it."
Related Sites:
Civilian Expeditionary Workforce 
Camp Atterbury
Muscatatuck Urban Training Center 

Click photo for screen-resolution imageAn Afghan role player meets with U.S. officials -- all civilian students -- to discuss security and a stalled construction project during one of several scenario students will undergo during the 11-day Civilian Expeditionary Workforce predeployment training course at Muscatatuck Urban Training Center, Ind., Feb. 10, 2011. The students will continue their deployment preparations at nearby Camp Atterbury. DOD photo by Elaine Wilson 
Click photo for screen-resolution imageAn Afghan role player meets with U.S. officials -- all civilian students -- to discuss security and a stalled construction project during one of several scenarios students will undergo at the 11-day Civilian Expeditionary Workforce predeployment training course at Muscatatuck Urban Training Center, Ind., Feb. 10, 2011. The students are civilians, both government and private-sector employees, who volunteered to deploy for a year in support of wartime and humanitarian missions around the world. DOD photo by Elaine Wilson 
Click photo for screen-resolution imageA convoy moves down a mock alleyway at Muscatatuck Urban Training Center, Ind., Feb. 10, 2011. Instructors strive to make the scenery as authentic as possible for students attending the Civilian Expeditionary Workforce predeployment training course at Muscatatuck and nearby Camp Atterbury. DOD photo by Elaine Wilson 

Team Focus Brings Synergy to Warfighter Support

By Donna Miles 
American Forces Press Service

ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, Md., March 8, 2011 - Not everyone at Fort Monmouth, N.J., was happy in 2005 when the announcement came down that the post would close and that most of its mission would move here as part of the Base Realignment and Closure Commission plan.
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Joe Cocco, deputy principal engineer for the new C4ISR campus at Aberdeen Proving Ground, Md., surveys a model of the state-of-the-art operation to accommodate about 7,200 new employees as part of the Base Realignment and Closure Commission plan. DOD photo by Donna Miles 
But fast-forward six years, and the new arrivals at Aberdeen Proving Ground say they're already seeing the wisdom of the plan and its benefit to warfighters on the battlefield.
BRAC is bringing major changes to this historic post, with the exodus of the Army Ordnance Center and School and the influx of thousands of high-tech organizations that are making it a technological hub.
The largest group of new tenants hails from Fort Monmouth, former home of Army Communications and Electronics Command and Communications-Electronic Research, Development and Engineering Center. It's made up largely of senior-level scientists, engineers, researchers, acquisition professionals and logisticians focused on developing, testing and fielding cutting-edge communications and electronics systems and equipment for the fighting force.
Before BRAC, they had been shoe-horned into more than 90 buildings scattered across Fort Monmouth. Often, they were miles away from their colleagues and relegated to substandard workspaces made available to support the expanding mission.
"There was a lot of retrofitting," said Joe Cocco, deputy principal engineer for the project. "You squeezed into a building and made that building fit the mission, or maybe you spread the mission over three or four different buildings. Each organization was in their own building or own area of a building."
BRAC promised to change all that, bringing together these functions at Aberdeen Proving Ground and organizing them in a way that threw traditional organizational charts out the window.
In addition to the Fort Monmouth activities, the state-of-the-art campus built to support their activities also would bring together other key partners in their mission that previously had been based at Redstone Arsenal, Ala., Fort Huachuca, Ariz., and Fort Belvoir, Va.
Collectively, they would be called the "C4ISR Materiel Enterprise" -- for Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance. And as they began moving into their new "C4ISR Center of Excellence" here, they were organized more like a private-sector corporation than a military organization.
Team C4ISR is built around "business domains," each focused on a different project or program, Cocco said. "Within each of those domains are several of the organizations, all mixed in each of the buildings and working together as an enterprise."
"A domain is built around a single product development line," such as a new radar system, explained Army Col. Andrew Nelson, deputy garrison commander for transformation. "Components of all those elements that support the mission are in there, all now clustered around their common laboratory.
"They work for three different bosses, but they are all working on the same domain – the same product – with the same objective to produce the next version of that radar or radio system," he added.
That's a whole different way of doing business than what the staff had at their previous posts. "In the old scenario, they were all separated," said Army Col. Bill Montgomery, CECOM's chief of staff. "The engineers were in one building. The safety people were in another. The project managers were in another building. That worked OK. But imagine if you got those entities together in a room. Think of the difference that could make."
Nelson agreed. "That's the beauty of what's happening here using the domain concept," he said. "You get the synergy of various team members, all working together with a common objective. It's a big improvement over how they did business before."
It also speeds up the process that gets new systems and equipment to the field, Montgomery said. "When you bring the different people involved [in a program] around the table, with all of them contributing their own experiences and expertise, it helps us get things done quicker, because you are not going through four or five different offices in different buildings," he said.
With more than half of the C4ISR team's 7,200 employees already settled into their new campus here and the rest to follow before the congressionally mandated Sept. 15 deadline, Montgomery said he's already seeing clear indications the new organization is working.
Employees are enjoying the bright, open spaces of the new C4ISR campus that rivals the most modern corporate technology parks, he said. The environmentally friendly buildings are built around courtyards and green space that even includes a grass-covered auditorium.
And no longer are C4ISR staffers relegated to cramped workspaces. When the second phase of the project is completed in the next month or so, the full complex will include 2.5 million square feet of new space spread across 13 buildings.
But selling the new facility -- and the move to Aberdeen -- wasn't necessarily an easy task. Shortly after the BRAC decision, Cocco traveled to Aberdeen to walk the grounds that would become the new C4ISR campus. He was part of a team that worked tirelessly with planners at both Fort Monmouth and Aberdeen Proving Ground to sort through the thousands of tiny details involved in building a first-class new facility, and moving an entire operation without disrupting its immediate wartime support role.
As construction continued on the new complex, Cocco hosted numerous bus trips so Fort Monmouth employees could see Aberdeen Proving Ground and its surrounding communities. Most of all, Cocco said, he wanted them to see the buildings being readied for them and entice them to make the move to Aberdeen.
Ultimately, about half of the Fort Monmouth work force opted to do so – far more than the 20 percent typical of previous BRAC moves, Nelson said.
While many of the C4ISR employees have relocated to Maryland, some have retained their New Jersey residences and commute between the two states. Among them is Richard Wittstruck in the office for intelligence, electronic warfare and sensors, who commutes four and a half hours, roundtrip, between his home and Aberdeen Proving Ground.
Living through his second BRAC – the first took him from Maryland to Fort Monmouth -- Wittstruck said he's worked hard to ensure his people understand that closing Fort Monmouth was strictly a business decision.
"BRAC is a very personal thing," he said. "The first thing you have to do is convince the work force that it's not a reflection of their performance. It's not as if they failed at their mission and were closed."
Wittstruck credited the efforts planners made to retain employees, recruit new ones to replace those who opted not to move to Aberdeen, and provide the infrastructure to support them at their new post.
Already, he said he sees the payoff in being able to coordinate activities across functions, with people able to step outside their offices rather than running across an installation to collaborate with their colleagues.
"There is going to be an intangible difference in the type of synergy and interaction that you are going to see," he said. "But to be practical, it is going to take time. It is going to take time to synthesize and synergize that."
As that evolution takes place, with C4ISR employees sharing spaces at their new desks and laboratory facilities, or gathering at food courts expected to open in the coming months, Montgomery said, they'll help to transform the way the Army does business.
"This is huge," he said. "We're getting back to the way things used to be done, which is just talk to each other" rather than relying on telephones and e-mail.
"This new facility and organization really gives us the capability to get together and talk around the table and discuss the work we're doing," he said. "And ultimately, that's going to have a huge impact on how we support the warfighter."
Related Sites: 
Army Team C4ISR 
Aberdeen Proving Ground 
Base Realignment and Closure Commission 
Related Articles:
BRAC Transforms Aberdeen Proving Ground Mission 

Click photo for screen-resolution imageThe new C4ISR Center of Excellence at Aberdeen Proving Ground, Md., is designed to support a new, 7,200-member team that crosses organizational lines to focus on command, control, communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance. DOD photo by Donna Miles 

Click photo for screen-resolution imageA construction worker leaves the site of the second phase of the new C4ISR Center of Excellence at Aberdeen Proving Ground, Md. The facility is expected to be completed in April to accommodate arriving employees supporting the command, control, communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance mission. DOD photo by Donna Miles