Category Archives: U.S Armed Forces in the World

U.S. Armed Forces in Multinational Exercise Arctic Forge 23

The U.S and European armed forces are joining in one of the largest multinational exercise, Arctic Forge 23, to demonstrate their shared capabilities and the rapid deployment of combat-credible forces.

The Arctic Forge 23 aims to enhance the joint operational strategies and the modernization of winter warfare and logistics in support of NATO in the north. It is charted to converge in Finland’s Defense Exercise North, and the Exercise Joint Viking in Norway.

Launched in February 16th, the Arctic Forge 23 is a U.S. Army Europe and Africa-led exercise that continues through March 17th. The exercise is the U.S. Army’s Arctic strategy concept in the cold climate and high altitude on building capabilities and cooperation with the Nordic, and NATO allies and partner states for security and defense in the Arctic region. 

The participants from U.S Army are the 11th Airborne Division from Alaska, the 10th Mountain Division, and Virginia Army National Guard to join ‘Defense Exercise North’ with Finland. 

The members of II Marine Expeditionary Force, the U.S Army, and the military personnel from Denmark, Germany, the Netherlands, Norway, and the United Kingdom to take part in ‘Exercise Joint Viking’ in Norway.

Stay tuned for more updates with: U.S Army Europe and Africa 

Acknowledgments: Sources: U.S. Army Europe and Africa, U.S. European Command Public Affairs. Arctic Forge 23 Logo ©U.S. Army Europe and Africa. Article by Editor in Chief, Catherine S. Schmidt   

Special Edition interview with the European Union Naval Force in Operation Atalanta (Series-5)

An Exclusive interview with Major Victor Gallardo (Spanish Army) – Spokesperson and Chief of EU NAVFOR Operation Atalanta Media Branch,   conducted by Editor in Chief, Catherine S. Schmidt

It is a great honor to have you with us in this interview, Sir. Thank you for accepting the invitation. 

Q 1: The European Naval Forces – Operation Atalanta has been implementing continuously series of trainings and maritime capacity building with African partners. Could you speak about some of these recent maritime activities in coordination with the European Union Capacity Building Mission in Somalia (EUCAP)?

First, I would like to thank you for the opportunity given to me by such an outstanding News Media to make EU NAVFOR Operation ATALANTA, our objectives and activities, as well as the deep and robust cooperation with US forces with whom we share areas of operations, a little better known.
Regarding EUCAP Somalia, I must say that our cooperation is very intense and close as we are part, together with EU TM Somalia, of the EU Integrated Approach to Somalia. Thanks to the special structure and capabilities of EUCAP, they have the responsibility to generate all capacity building/enhancing activities with regard to maritime security, in which we cooperate as experts in the field. 

As perfect example, last 19 December, ESPS “Santa María” conducted a Local Maritime Capacity Building activity in international waters. The activity consisted of providing support to EUCAP-Somalia on a three days drill carried out with Somali Police Force and Maritime Police Unit and Coastguard. The training was focused on basic navigation procedures on paper chart, use of radar, communications training, boarding search and seizure procedures and first aid. Remarkably, for the first time, the Somali Police Force and Maritime Police Unit and Coastguard made a transit with two boats over 12 nautical miles in order to embark/disembark their personnel on board ESPS “Santa María”.

Q 2: The U.S Naval force has been also a supporting partner for the EU NAVFOR from the beginning of Op. Atalanta. As of recent time the ESPS Santa Maria participated in a save and rescue exercise with the U.S Navy, U.S Marine Corps, and U.S Airforce.  Could you elaborate on this joint exercise?

As noted in the introduction above, the relationship between EUNAVFOR and the US forces deployed in the region is strong, trusting and permanent. These relations are particularly notable with Combined Joint Task Force Horn of Africa (CJTF HOA), whose HQ is in Djibouti (Djibouti), and the US units associated with the Combined Maritime Force (CMF), whose HQ is in Manama (Bahrain).

Thanks to these partnerships, multitudes of joint activities are realized. For example, on 2 December, ESPS “Santa María” took part in exercise “Bullshark” along with US CJTF HOA, together with the FFDJ (French Forces in Djibouti) and the Djibouti Coast Guard. The Spanish Special Operations Maritime Task Unit performed a “Personnel Recovery” drill in Djibouti territorial waters and inland. This kind of exercises assure the complementarity of efforts with the US forces and rest of maritime security actors in the area and have become one of the distinctive traits of Atalanta’s coordination with CJTF HOA.

And how such a close partnership benefits the both sides?

Our joint actions allow our units to be fully aware of mutual tactics, techniques and procedures (LTT), creating a deep relationship of trust and support. In the example above, a “Personnel Recovery” drill will allow the synchronization between the participating units in a real case to be as appropriate, fast and precise as possible, allowing the best possible chance of success.

Q 3: In November 2022, the EU NAVFOR in partnership with Combined Maritime Forces (CMF) hosted the 50th SHADE Conference in Bahrein. What were the envisaged goals to be accomplished with this forum?

On 16th and 17th November, the 50th iteration of the SHADE conference (Shared Information and De-confliction) was held in Manama (Bahrain), organized by EU NAVFOR Atalanta and co-chaired by the Combined Maritime Forces. So again, a very close cooperation with U.S. forces.

Since its inception in 2009, this forum has become the major platform for de-conflicting the operational activities of the naval forces in the region. Indeed, it is a unique meeting to share information with representatives of the international shipping industry, countries (Oman, India, Pakistan, China, Republic of Korea), international (IMO) and regional organizations (Djibouti Code of Conduct/Jeddah Amendment, Contact Group on Illicit Maritime Activities), and the academia (University of Copenhagen). Thanks to the different workshops and the final plenary session, together with the interventions of relevant attendees through the VTC platforms, these two objectives are achieved in a very productive and associative way.

Q 4: Could you give us an update of recent years challenges and achievements in suppressing piracy in the Horn of Africa and the Western Indian Ocean? And in terms of technological investments does EU NAVFOR see a need for higher investments?

In terms of the challenges, the Operation has faced the previous ATALANTA mandate came into force in January 2020, which called for the operation to become a Maritime Security Provider in the Western Indian Ocean. Once again, as on many occasions over the past 14 years, the Operation was able to adapt to new requirements. But it also adapted to the new reality, when the non-extension of UNSCR 2608, which allowed the operation to enter Somali territorial waters, was adopted.

Moreover, thanks to the valuable assistance of the EEAS and the PSC, ATALANTA was authorized in February 2022 to activate its secondary executive task of “contributing to the fight against narcotics and drug trafficking off the coast of Somalia”. We were proud to note that in a period of just a few days, eight interceptions were made and up to 12.7 tons of narcotics worth more than 250 million euros in street value were seized from criminal networks. And additionally, we continue our unstinting effort to support the Somali government and authorities in contributing to the creation of a regional maritime security architecture.

Finally, the Operation has been greatly strengthened as an integral tool of EU naval diplomacy thanks to the Strategic Operation Review or the Coordinated Maritime Presences Concept itself. Furthermore, we are very proud to confirm that Atalanta’s mandate has recently been renewed for another two years. However, this new mandate has additional challenges: an expanded area of operations; new strengthened responsibilities in the areas of IUU fishing or capacity building; the challenges posed by the unstable situation in the region, aggravated by the undesirable results of Russia’s aggression against Ukraine. This framework makes our commitment stronger than ever. At the Operational and tactical level, it will be necessary to make an additional effort with our air resources, currently reduced after not continuing the P3M ORION in support to the Operation, while at the strategic level the ties and synergies between ATALANTA and EMASOH will be strengthened. The Concept of Cooperation of ATALANTA (COCOA) will be more important than ever.

And of course, at the same time, all these new demands and challenges motivate us to give our best and be able to achieve the objectives that are demanded of EU NAVFOR. Thank you very much again for giving us this opportunity and we hope to strengthen our cooperation even more if possible in the future.

See some of our recent and past interviews and articles:



The United States Navy in Operation Atalanta-1

The United States Navy in Operation Atalanta-2

Acknowledgments: Image-1 EU NAVFOR joint activity with CJTF HoA ©EU NAVFOR. Image-2 U.S Naval Replenishment Ship ‘USNS Laramie’ (center) off the Coast of Somalia, supporting Operation Atalanta. December 17, 2015 ©EU NAVFOR. The interview is subject to Copyright Law. ©EU NAVFOR/U.S Europe World Affairs.

NATO allies and partners in U.S Army-led Operation Atlantic Resolve

NATO allies and partner nations, U.S military including the National Guards, and most European armed-forces, coming closer than ever in multinational operation Atlantic Resolve 2023.                                                                                                                                                                Since its launch in 2014, the U.S Army-led operation Atlantic Resolve has been one of the most crucial annual exercises which has developed exponentially the most needed strategies for defense and security of European.






Operation Atlantic Resolve creates and facilitates new ways of effective and highly rapid interoperability between the U.S, Europe; NATO allies and partner states. It builds deeper and expands further the pathways to increase constructive communications and understanding, greater interconnectivity and stronger partnerships at all levels in military operations.

Announced by the Army, V Corps  is in command of Atlantic Resolve rotational forces.

Stay tuned with U.S Army Europe and Africa for more updates on Op. Atlantic Resolve

Acknowledgment: Sources: U.S. Army Europe and Africa, U.S. European Command Public Affairs. Image ©U.S. Army Europe and Africa/ Atlantic Resolve Graphic. Article by Editor in Chief, Catherine S. Schmidt   

Interview with the NATO Air Command Spokesman (series-2)

Special Edition Interview with the NATO Allied Air Command Spokesperson conducted by Editor in Chief, Catherine S. Schmidt

Q: What is the role of Allied Air Command (AIRCOM) and its position and response to the Russian war in Ukraine?

NATO Allied Air Command Spokesperson: While not a party to the war that Russia is waging in Ukraine, NATO stands united and in full solidarity with the government and people of Ukraine in the defence of their country. NATO nations are providing unprecedented support to help Ukraine uphold its right to self-defence, which is enshrined in the UN Charter. NATO has made clear that it will continue to support Ukraine for as long as it takes. At the same time NATO remains vigilant, calm and closely coordinated, and will always do what is necessary to protect and defend all Allies.

In response, NATO has substantially increased the number of fighter jets on alert across Eastern Europe to send a clear message that we stand ready protect and defend every inch of allied territory. In the wake of Russia’s war, there has been an increased use of missiles, Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) and combat aircraft close to the borders of NATO nations. NATO air forces have bolstered their presence in the eastern part of the Alliance. Their presence helps to shield NATO against any aggression.  Several dozen fighter jets are on alert at all time to respond to possible airspace violations and to deter aggression under our 24/7 collective defence Air Policing mission.

Allied Air Command (AIRCOM) has integrated the Allied air forces’ fighters, air-to-air refuelling and transport aircraft as well as Allied and NATO E-3A/Airborne Early Warning and Control System (AWACS) platforms into the standing arrangements to safeguard the skies above the Allies. These assets enable NATO to patrol the Allied airspace and have 24/7 situational awareness above NATO and adjacent territory. Allied fighters take off from their home bases, forward deployment bases or carriers flying Air Patrol missions along the Alliance’s eastern flank.

Besides our Alliance-wide Air Policing efforts, the NATO Air Shielding mission integrates Allied Air and Surface-Based Air and Missile Defence (SBAMD) units into the NATO Integrated Air and Missile Defence (IAMD) system. Commanded and controlled out of Allied Air Command this will provide a near seamless shield from the Baltic to Black Seas, ensuring NATO Allies are better able to safeguard and protect Alliance territory, populations and forces from air and missile threat. This enhanced posture allows the Alliance to deter and mitigate any potential adversarial threat. Our missions are conducted in compliance with international laws and standards.

Q: In regard to Baltic region security, how is the current air policing on the eastern flank operating?

NATO Allied Air Command Spokesperson: We continue our 24/7 Air Policing mission; this collective effort by all our Allies safeguards the airspace of the NATO member nations and preserves its integrity. Allied Air Command via its two Combined Air Operations Centres (CAOCs) in Uedem, Germany, and Torrejón, Spain, continues to lead and execute this mission especially in Iceland, the Baltic Region, the Western Balkans or the eastern flank where Allied fighter detachments take turns working with local air forces to ensure the security of our populations and territory.

Q: Could you please give us the highlight of the NATO’s rotational deterrence and defense posture of  2022 as well as the current one?

NATO Allied Air Command Spokesperson: AIRCOM’s commitment to collective deterrence and defence is unfaltering. I is great to see how virtually all Allies contribute to our enhanced posture. Our Air Policing posture continues to effectively safeguard the airspace above all our Allies under NATO Command and Control ensured by our CAOCs. Last year, Hungary, Spain, Poland together with Germany, Italy, France, the Czech Republic, Belgium, the United States, Denmark supported our Air Policing mission in the North, and Spain, Germany, the United States, Italy, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom and Canada were deployed to Romania and Bulgaria to enhance that mission in the south, Portugal, Italy and Denmark flew patrols of the Icelandic Airspace. As we speak these missions are ongoing with Poland, France, Germany and the Netherlands in the North, Italy and Spain in the South and Norway in Iceland. 

Q: Please elaborate on the allies and partners multi-national exercises and vigilance activities from Baltic to the Arctic regions.

NATO Allied Air Command Spokesperson: NATO’s enhanced Vigilance Activities allow our Allies to join forces and practice cooperation and combined joint missions. We have done so and continue to do so during complex training drills and exercises in the Baltic Sea, the Eastern Mediterranean and the North Sea. Our Joint Force Air Component – that we stood up at Allied Air Command with the start of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine – controls and coordinates all these activities; they also involve Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance missions conducted by our Allies’ assets, the E-3A AWACS planes and the Alliance Ground Surveillance Force RQ-4D remotely piloted aircraft; and they are closely coordinated with Surface Based Air and Missile Defence systems. These exercises that also include carrier strike groups at sea, strategic bombers in the air and joint terminal attack controllers and air defence systems on the ground ensure that all participants are able to train across the whole spectrum of Joint Air Power demonstrating NATO’s commitment, cohesion and capability. Our training and exercise activities in the Baltic and Arctic regions have included Finland and Sweden – our regional Partners who are soon going to join the NATO Alliance.


View some of the current and past interviews:


Acknowledgments: Image courtesy of NATO Allied Air Command. Interview is subject to Copyright Law. ©NATO Allied Air Command/NATO

The Northern Europe Chiefs of Defense Conference

In October 2022, the military officials from the U.S and Europe attended in the Northern Europe Chiefs of Defense Conference to discuss current regional security and strengthening defense cooperation. 

The 13 participant nations were including: Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Sweden, the United Kingdom and the United States. And the military representatives from:

The two day conference was a crucial gathering and discussion platform which facilitated and reaffirmed among others the following objectives:

  • Highlighting the multi-dimensional aspects of the regional security;
  • Enhancing mutual defense cooperation among NATO members and partners;
  • The current developments in military technology and how to upgrade and complement the interoperability of NATO members and partner nations.

The conference is a yearly military event established by the U.S. European Command, taking place each year in a different European capitals. In 2021 the conference was held in Helsinki, Finland and the latest conference was in Oct 2022, in Warsaw, Poland.

“There has not been a moment in years when such a meeting has been so critical,”…….             “Russia’s illegal and unprovoked invasion of Ukraine has served as an opportunity for all of us to come together to discuss important matters of national and collective defense.”  elaborated U.S. Army Gen. Christopher Cavoli, Commander of U.S. European Command ©U.S. European Command Oct 2022

News from: U.S. Army Southern European Task Force, Africa

Acknowledgment: Sources: U.S. European Command Public Affairs. Photo Military leaders in Northern Europe chiefs of defense conference, Oct. 19-20, 2022, Warsaw, Poland. ©Polish General Staff/U.S European Command Public Affairs. By Editor in Chief, Catherine S. Schmidt  

U.S-European military leaders in Arctic security forces Roundtable forum

Promoting security and cooperation in the Artic region has been long the United States foreign policy. 

In late November the military leaders, representing the North America and Europe, attended in the 13th Roundtable forum of the Arctic Security Forces, to discuss a comprehensive range of critical issues. The forum was held virtually and its main objectives were: 

  • To address the Arctic awareness; security, challenges and stability
  • To build a closer partnership and cooperation in the Arctic region

Founded in 2010 by U.S. European Command and the Norwegian Defence, the Arctic Security Forces Roundtable (ASFR) is a military forum scheduled twice a year. One with the participation of the military leaders from the Arctic nations: Canada, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Sweden or the U.S.  And the second one with the observer nations: France, Germany, the Netherlands or the United Kingdom. 

The ASFR addresses the present and emerging challenges, and promotes military cooperation in the Arctic region.

Acknowledgment: Sources U.S EUCOM. By Editor in Chief, Catherine S. Schmidt   

Important Announcement about fake sites

Dear viewers/readers,

Please know that there are several fake blogs, sites that have published biography, quotes from me, those are not mine. They are Illegal, FAKE containing spams.

Also the blogs that offer downloads of my books are Illegal and they contain  malwares. We have already informed the authorities. 

Director, Editor in chief,

Catherine Stella Schmidt

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