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NEWPORT, R.I. (NNS) -- Faculty from the U.S. Naval War College traveled to the Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, Sept. 5-9, to lend their expertise at the 38th Inter-American War Game (IAWG) Closing Conference.

The IAWG Conference provides a venue for Navy leaders from North and Latin America partner countries to share insights in a simulated crisis situation to build and strengthen multinational maritime cooperation. Conference participants included Navy officers from Argentina, Canada, Chile, Columbia, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Mexico, and the U.S.

SANTA DOMINGO, DOMINICAN REPUBLIC (September 5-9) - Senior officers from the Mexican Navy are joined by Naval War College War Game Department faculty members at the Inter American War Games held in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. Pictured form left to right Capt. Carlos Escamilla, Lt. Cmdr. Conrado Aparicio, NWC War Gaming Chairman Dave DellaVolpe, Cmdr. Dustin Martin, and Prof. Shawn Burns.Leading the U.S. Naval War College contingent was War Gaming Department Chairman, Prof. David DellaVolpe. He was joined Cmdr. Dustin Martin and Prof. Shawn Burns.
According to Burns, the 2011 Inter-American War Game was planned to make partner countries to consider national use of force and the limits of that force; nation specific, legal interpretations of sea and space boundaries; and command and control mechanisms needed for multinational operations especially in responding to disaster and humanitarian situations.

"The scenario posed to participants centered on a fictitious archipelago consisting of two countries
With multiple islands and several intersecting international straits," said Burns. "A multinational maritime force is directed by an international body to maintain free and open shipping lanes when a separatist group takes control of a previously contested island. The presence of off-shore, natural gas reserves and disputed fishing areas made the exercise scenario more thought provoking as well."

According to Burns, exercise participants were asked to develop an initial concept of operations. Each turn or phase of the game made things more complex as players were faced with unlawful seizure of commercial ships and the need to respond to a natural disaster.

Dominican Republic Navy Capt. Jose Corcino Polanco and Captain Emilio Recio Segura, director of the Dominican Republic's Naval War College provided overall game leadership. They both stressed the value of the annual war game series as an effective mechanism to foster maritime cooperation among the partner countries.

U.S. Naval War College is scheduled to host the multinational war game in 2013.

By James E. Brooks, U.S. Naval War College Public Affairs