Since becoming fully operational as a NATO command in 1995, the ARRC has been tested by two very difficult missions. Most recently it served as headquarters for the initial-entry force into Kosovo last year, and previously it served as the headquarters for the Bosnia-Herzegovina Implementation Force in 1996. These historical precedents make ARRC training exercises both relevant to the current defence needs of the Alliance and critical for its future readiness to deploy on short notice. The ARRC is manned by personnel from 17 of NATO's 19 member nations. ARRC affiliated units also participating in the exercise come from France, Hungary, Italy, Spain, Turkey, the United Kingdom, and the United States. In addition the headquarters of Multinational Division (Central), made up of forces from Belgium, Germany, the Netherlands, and the United Kingdom, will take part as a deployed formation.
The Allied Command Europe Rapid Reaction Corps, joined by the headquarters of combat formations and support units from 10 of NATO's 19 member nations, practised its wartime mission as the Alliance's premier land combat force during the 14-day exercise in the region of northwest Bavaria and eastern Hessen from October 13-27, 2000. The exercise, called ARRCADE FUSION 2000, primarily took place in the vicinity of Wildflecken and Fulda, Germany, although units also participated from bases in Italy, Spain and Turkey. This Command Post Exercise involved nearly 5,500 people and was an essential part of the ARRC's training program to sustain its deploy ability within 15 days in support of NATO's crisis management options.
ARRCADE FUSION 2000 was a computer-assisted exercise (CAX) involving only headquarters staffs of the (Allied Command Europe [ACE] Rapid-Reaction Corps [ARRC]) and the participating units, mainly in the area of Wildflecken in northern Bavaria, but also in locations as far-flung as Ankara, Turkey; Madrid, Spain; and Udine, Italy. A total of 17 of 19 NATO nations participated in ARRCADE Fusion 2000, the first exercise of its magnitude since 1998. The exercise scenario was based on a large-scale regional crisis caused by aggression against a Partnership-for-Peace nation that threatens Europe's long-term peace, security and stability. Twenty-one units, including 309 soldiers from the 1st Armored Division participated in the exercise, interacting with counterparts from throughout Europe.
ARRCADE Fusion 2000 enabled the 17 involved nations to use their combined armed forces to train for combat realistically. This exercise was unique in that it is not that often that the soldiers get the opportunity to work with 17 different nations, fight a war together. A robust scenario places the ARRC headquarters as the Land Component Command for a high-intensity conflict involving five NATO divisions, as well as a variety of combat support and combat service support formations. Using a computer-aided Command Post Exercise, the Corps is able to realistically simulate this scenario without placing entire divisions and brigades in the field. Instead, only formations' headquarters are involved in order to exercise the decision-making process of commanders and their staffs, while exercise controllers replicate both the enemy and the actions of subordinate commands.
The exercise was conducted in close partnership with the German Army's Battle Exercises Simulation Center. It was a computer-aided exercise designed to test headquarters staffs rather than the troops on the ground. The purpose of the exercise was to establish and maintain the structure of the Allied Rapid Reaction Corps and get units from different nations used to working with each other.
During ARRCADE Fusion 2000, 1,200 exercise controllers simulated the movement of almost 152,000 troops and over 56,200 vehicles and major pieces of equipment. But while the tactical aspects of the exercise were critical, the real purpose of the exercise was to establish and improve on the lines of communication between the NATO nations.
While it is difficult to truly comprehend the magnitude of ARRCADE Fusion 2000 without examining the immense resources involved in the execution of the exercise, the immensity can be brought into perspective when considering that more than 6,300 troops participated in the exercise. Food service specialists served more than 228,000 meals, including 52,000 eggs, 13,000 loaves of bread and 2,800 chickens. Soldiers used more than 200,000 liters of fuel. Signal soldiers laid out more than eight kilometers of communication cable.
Exercise ARRCADE FUSION 2001 was a computer-aided, command-post exercise (CPX) specifically designed to train the headquarters staff of the ARRC, as well as the headquarters of its assigned Divisions and Corps Troops, without massing troops and equipment on the ground. The Allied Command Europe Rapid Reaction Corps, joined by the headquarters of combat formations and support units from 7 of NATO's 19 member nations, conducted its annual keystone exercise ARRCADE FUSION in North Rhine Westphalia between 12-26 October 2001. This Command Post Exercise primarily took place in the vicinity of Sennelager Training Centre, Germany. The exercise is an essential part of the ARRC's training program which is designed to maintain operational effectiveness and an ability to deploy within 15 days in support of NATO's crisis management options. The exercise used sophisticated computer simulation techniques to hone the headquarters warfighting skills whilst at the same time minimising deployed troop numbers and environmental impact.
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