Reservist

ISS1 2018

Reservist Magazine is the award-winning official publication of the United States Coast Guard Reserve. Quarterly issues include news and feature articles about the men and women who comprise America's premier national maritime safety and security

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Unity in Diversity Participants in the 10-day joint military bilateral exercise Gema Bhakti, 2017 in Jakarta, i ndonesia. Bhinneka tunggal ika, the Indonesian national motto, means "unity in diversity." This theme resonated with two reservists from Coast Guard Reserve Unit Pacific Command (USPACOM) who traveled to Jakarta, Indonesia, the world's largest archipelago, in September. Capt. Joanna Hiigel and Cmdr. John Mower traveled halfway around the world to support the 10-day joint military bilateral exercise, Gema Bhakti 17 (GB17). This was the fifth exercise of its kind held between the U.S. and Indonesia's military, Tentara National Indonesia. It was designed to enhance collaboration and skill in planning a response to a regional crisis, with an emphasis on maritime security. For a second year, the Coast Guard was invited to support the design and execution of the exercise using its maritime security expertise. About 50 U.S. service members from all branches of the military joined about 50 Indonesian military participants, as well members from civilian aid organizations. The primary purpose of GB17 was to build allied relationships through execution of a simulated United Nations Security Council resolution authorizing international assistance for the general peace and welfare of a simulated nation. Tasks included providing protection from piracy, securing refugee camps, facilitating a safe environment for humanitarian aid delivery and preparing for a potential typhoon. Participants were divided into two teams, each tasked with developing a course of action to meet the UN resolution. Hiigel and Mower, each assisting their respective team, worked with BAKAMLA – the Indonesian coast guard – as well as other military and civilian members to identify resources and provide expertise on maritime security and civilian-military collaboration in support of humanitarian and disaster response operations. The Coast Guard's participation afforded both U.S. and foreign military services a chance to gain a greater understanding of Coast Guard missions and capabilities as a potential force multiplier in bilateral operations. "The hard part was the language barrier, of course," said Mower. Some participants spoke English, but not many of the American participants spoke the languages there. Hiigel said the DoD provided interpreters to smooth the way. The teams worked through a seven-step decision-making process used in multinational response environments. This cyclical process encompasses planning, execution, assessment, and adaptation for achieving military end-state goals and supporting both operational and strategic objectives. It's used to refine and update multinational force plans and orders as the command learns and effectively adapts to changing situations. "The overall goal is having a good professional relationship with our Indonesian counterparts," said Hiigel. "Like any other exercise, it's about raising the issues that get people thinking about plans and improving preparedness," added Mower, "but with this exercise, we had a unique opportunity to share best practices with their coast guard." A second purpose of attending the exercise was to develop professional relationships with the Coast Guard's Indonesian counterparts in BAKAMLA. The name BAKAMLA is an acronym made from the translation for Maritime Security Board.) Because Indonesia is archipelagic, it has an extremely large amount of coastline. However, the service is still in its infancy, and it 14 RESERVIST � Issue 1 • 2018

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