CJTF-HOA members construct Forward Headquarters Element, train for emergency ops
Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa service members constructed a Forward Headquarters Element with joint operation center capabilities as part of contingency readiness training on Camp Lemonnier, Djibouti, Dec. 3, 2012.
The FHE, a soft tent, houses equipment and personnel needed for CJTF-HOA leadership to command and communicate with the local forces.
"This is our forward headquarters element where we would take our headquarters from our home station JOC and move it out in the field closer to the action, wherever we need to be," said U.S. Navy Lieutenant Cmdr. Chuck Hawkins, CJTF-HOA operations assistant mission commander. "This allows us to have an on-site commander with on-site eyes to relay information back and forth keeping everybody informed about the situation"
It can take three to four hours to assemble/erect the tent and make it operational, which includes enabling power and communication. Twenty-five service members are always on standby should a real-world emergency arise, according to Hawkins.
Members from CJTF-HOA's operations, intelligence, and communications sections, and Camp Lemonnier's Naval Mobile Construction Battalion One and force protection personnel partnered to share best practices and solve any problems that arose to successfully complete the mission.
"My people did excellent today," Hawkins said. "You know you are going to find some flaws and we worked through them. Next time it's going to be even better than before."