407th CA creates CIMIC Soldiers in Djibouti

U.S. Army Capt. Clemeunt Douglass, 407th Civil Affairs Battalion, Charlie Company, Team 0733 team chief, observes as a Djibouti army soldier explains lesson content during the Civil Military Cooperation training course at Bat Hill 2, in Arta, Djibouti, Dec. 11, 2014. The CIMIC Training was a two-week course conducted to teach Djibouti military members how to be the liaison between combatant commanders and the civilian populous. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Ian Dean) U.S. Army Capt., 407th Civil Affairs Battalion, observes as Djibouti Army Soldier explains Lesson Content during Civil Military Cooperation Training Course at Bat Hill 2, in Arta, Djibouti U.S. Army Capt. Clemeunt Douglass, 407th Civil Affairs Battalion, Charlie Company, Team 0733 team chief, observes as a Djibouti army soldier explains lesson content during the Civil Military Cooperation training course at Bat Hill 2, in Arta, Djibouti, Dec. 11, 2014. The CIMIC Training was a two-week course conducted to teach Djibouti military members how to be the liaison between combatant commanders and the civilian populous. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Ian Dean)
Members of the Djibouti military gather to discuss a training exercise during the Civil Military Cooperation training course at Bat Hill 2, in Arta, Djibouti, Dec. 11, 2014. Djibouti military service members participated in live action scenarios to test their application of knowledge gained during classroom instruction. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Ian Dean) Members of the Djibouti Military discuss Training Exercise during Civil Military Cooperation Training Course at Bat Hill 2, in Arta, Djibouti Members of the Djibouti military gather to discuss a training exercise during the Civil Military Cooperation training course at Bat Hill 2, in Arta, Djibouti, Dec. 11, 2014. Djibouti military service members participated in live action scenarios to test their application of knowledge gained during classroom instruction. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Ian Dean)
U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Matthew Hoffman, 407th Civil Affairs Battalion, Charlie Company, Team 0733, reviews notes with an interpreter during the Civil Military Cooperation training course at Bat Hill 2, in Arta, Djibouti, Dec. 11, 2014. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Ian Dean) U.S. Army Staff Sgt., 407th Civil Affairs Battalion, reviews Notes with Interpreter during Civil Military Cooperation Training Course U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Matthew Hoffman, 407th Civil Affairs Battalion, Charlie Company, Team 0733, reviews notes with an interpreter during the Civil Military Cooperation training course at Bat Hill 2, in Arta, Djibouti, Dec. 11, 2014. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Ian Dean)
U.S. Army Capt. Clemeunt Douglass, 407th Civil Affairs Battalion, Charlie Company, Team 0733 team chief, listens as a Djibouti navy sailor briefs his leadership on a mock assessment during the Civil Military Cooperation training course at Bat Hill 2, in Arta, Djibouti, Dec. 11, 2014. Members of the Djibouti army and navy participated in several scenarios to test what they had learned in the classroom. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Ian Dean) U.S. Army Capt., 407th Civil Affairs Battalion, listens as Djibouti Navy Sailor briefs Leadership on Mock Assessment during Civil Military Cooperation Training Course U.S. Army Capt. Clemeunt Douglass, 407th Civil Affairs Battalion, Charlie Company, Team 0733 team chief, listens as a Djibouti navy sailor briefs his leadership on a mock assessment during the Civil Military Cooperation training course at Bat Hill 2, in Arta, Djibouti, Dec. 11, 2014. Members of the Djibouti army and navy participated in several scenarios to test what they had learned in the classroom. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Ian Dean)
Djibouti army soldiers listen to a lesson during the Civil Military Cooperation training course at Bat Hill 2, in Arta, Djibouti, Dec. 17, 2014. Thirty-six members of the Djibouti army and navy attended the two-week CIMIC course in preparation for their upcoming deployment supporting African Mission to Somalia operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Ian Dean) Djibouti Army Soldiers listen to Lesson during Civil Military Cooperation Training Course at Bat Hill 2, in Arta, Djibouti Djibouti army soldiers listen to a lesson during the Civil Military Cooperation training course at Bat Hill 2, in Arta, Djibouti, Dec. 17, 2014. Thirty-six members of the Djibouti army and navy attended the two-week CIMIC course in preparation for their upcoming deployment supporting African Mission to Somalia operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Ian Dean)
U.S. Marine Corps Sgt. Maj. Bonnie Skinner, Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa senior enlisted leader, utilizes an interpreter to teach a gender issues course to members of the Djibouti armed forces during the Civil Military Cooperation training course at Bat Hill 2, in Arta, Djibouti, Dec. 17, 2014. Skinner taught students on the importance of treating all people with dignity and respect regardless of gender or age. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Ian Dean) CJTF-HOA Senior Enlisted Leader utilizes Interpreter to teach Gender Issues Course to Members of Djibouti Armed Forces during Civil Military Cooperation Training Course U.S. Marine Corps Sgt. Maj. Bonnie Skinner, Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa senior enlisted leader, utilizes an interpreter to teach a gender issues course to members of the Djibouti armed forces during the Civil Military Cooperation training course at Bat Hill 2, in Arta, Djibouti, Dec. 17, 2014. Skinner taught students on the importance of treating all people with dignity and respect regardless of gender or age. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Ian Dean)
U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Matthew Hoffman, 407th Civil Affairs Battalion, Charlie Company, Team 0733, gestures to Djibouti army soldiers during a key leader engagement exercise as part of the Civil Military Cooperation training at Bat Hill 2, in Arta, Djibouti, on Dec. 17, 2014. The CIMIC course students applied their classroom lessons to realistic scenarios and were evaluated by course instructors. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Ian Dean) U.S. Army Staff Sgt., 407th Civil Affairs Battalion, gestures to Djibouti Army Soldiers during Key Leader Engagement Exercise as Part of Civil Military Cooperation Training U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Matthew Hoffman, 407th Civil Affairs Battalion, Charlie Company, Team 0733, gestures to Djibouti army soldiers during a key leader engagement exercise as part of the Civil Military Cooperation training at Bat Hill 2, in Arta, Djibouti, on Dec. 17, 2014. The CIMIC course students applied their classroom lessons to realistic scenarios and were evaluated by course instructors. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Ian Dean)

Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa conducted Civil Military Co-operation training with members of the Djibouti military at Bat Hill 2, in Arta, Djibouti, Dec. 1-19, 2014.

Members of the U.S. Army 407th Civil Affairs Battalion, Charlie Company, Team 0733 trained 34 members of the Djibouti army and navy during the two-week course in preparation for their upcoming deployment to support the African Mission to Somalia (AMISOM).

The CIMIC course is designed to train service members on how to interact with the civilian population, learn their needs and bring those needs back to their leadership. The ultimate goal of CIMIC training is to provide non-lethal alternatives for combatant commanders.

“CIMIC is about saving lives rather than taking lives,” said U.S. Army Capt. Clemeunt Douglass, 407th CA BTN, Charlie Company, Team 0733 officer in charge. “Our goal is to ensure service members understand how to analyze the situation in their area of operation, how to best gain support for AMISOM and, more importantly, legitimize the government of Somalia in the eyes of the local populace.”

CIMIC training is conducted in two main phases. The first phase takes place in the classroom, where service members learn how to interact with the local population, assess local conditions and available resources, collect data and report the information to the commanders on the ground.

The second phase consists of practical application exercises. One of the exercises teaches the students about key leader engagement. Members of Team 0733 play the role of local leaders. The students‘goals are to meet with those local leaders, assess the situation and bring the information back to brief their commander.  The course instructors evaluate the reports and provide feedback.

“The Tactical CIMIC course enables students to be the liaison between the civilian populous and the combatant commander,” Douglass noted. “CIMIC service members represent their unit and liaise with the national population, local authorities, as well as national, international, and non-governmental organizations and agencies.”

An important addition to the regular CIMIC course material was a lesson titled “Gender Issues in Conflict and Disasters.”  Although cultural challenges make gender issues a difficult subject to teach, it is important for the student to understand the proper moral and ethical behavior expected from a professional fighting force. To assist with this task, Team 0733 enlisted the help of U.S. Marine Corps Sgt. Maj. Bonnie Skinner, CJTF-HOA senior enlisted leader to teach the course.

“Your upcoming mission in Somalia is extremely important,” Skinner said during her lesson. “As members of the Profession of Arms, it is critical that each of you treat all with dignity and respect. This is regardless if the person is female, a child, or elderly. What you learn in this course will give you the tools to neutralize the threats to peace and stability in East Africa.”

CIMIC training is an evolving program, built upon lessons learned from AMISOM operations. Although there were only 34 students in this class, Douglass says the intent is for each of the students to pass on what they learned in the course to their fellow service members.  This will assist in accomplishing the AMISOM mission and create “African solutions to African Problems.”

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407th Civil Affairs Battalion Charlie Company Civil Military Cooperation Training Course

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