PEARL HARBOR – Commander, U.S. Pacific Fleet hosted the Naval War College’s Combined Force Maritime Component Commander Course (CFMCC) for international flag and general officers Feb 18-24 at the Headquarters Compound.
The week-long course brought together 22 officers; 11 from partner nations of Australia, Bangladesh, Canada, Chile, Indonesia, Japan, Republic of Korea, Malaysia, New Zealand, Philippines and Thailand as well as 11 from the U.S. The course consisted of a series of discussions and forums on topics such as c
ommand and control, information-sharing, disaster response and environmental law.
In addition to international Naval attendees, this year’s CFMCC hosted one officer each from the Army, Air Force, Coast Guard and Marine Corps, as selected by their respective services.
“The opportunity to bring together operational commanders in an international forum such as this helps deepen our partnerships and strengthen our collective security efforts,” said Adm. Patrick Walsh, Commander, U.S. Pacific Fleet. “The candid exchange of ideas and shared insight between the attendees broadens our understanding of the mutual security challenges we face.”
The CFMCC course uses experienced subject matter experts as session instructors to develop perspectives necessary to effectively employ naval forces in a joint, coalition or interagency environment. This practical application of real-world events helps to improve the effectiveness of senior leaders from throughout the Pacific region who routinely function together.
The flag-level course is specifically designed to develop relationships among international maritime leaders in fostering trust and confidence in support of theater or regional cooperation in theater. This focus is oriented toward maritime security to prepare the attendees for theater-level leadership and offer a broad perspective of operational and strategic levels of war.
“The course is conducted annually in Pearl Harbor to continue to advancing the understanding of security issues throughout the Pacific and improve our ability to work together to solve regional maritime challenges while understanding the multiple perspectives involved,” said RADM Phil Wisecup, President of the Naval War College in Newport, R.I.
Regional concerns and the CFMCC capabilities to address the concerns are the basis for course discussions to study and help evolve combined maritime command and control concepts and mechanisms, while advancing the understanding of those security issues facing participating nations.
“Trust and cooperation are fundamental to our ability to promote peace and also to effectively respond to any challenge across the military spectrum,” said Walsh. “Every opportunity we have to engage in an open
dialogue and learn from each other, as we have experienced during this week’s CFMCC course, will serve to enhance our ability to operate more efficiently together in times of crisis.”
The CFMCC course this year was facilitated by senior mentors including retired Adm. Arun Prakash of India, retired U.S. Navy Vice Adm. Barry Costello, retired U.S. Navy Vice Adm. Lyle Bien and retired U.S. Marine Corps Lt. Gen. Martin Berndt. These experienced experts ensured course and session objectives are met. The course is based upon the principles of transparency, non-attribution, and mutual respect for participants to provide a comfortable forum for open discussion of issues to facilitate a better understanding of the various perspectives involved in a multi-national force.
The first CFMCC Course, which focused on Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Central Command, was held in
Newport, RI in September 2006. U.S. Pacific Fleet has previously hosted CFMCC courses in 2007, 2008, and 2009. The U.S. Naval War College has also conducted CFMCC courses in Naples, Italy in July 2008, and in the Kingdom of Bahrain in November 2009.
By Commander, U.S. Pacific Fleet Public Affairs and contributed to by NWC