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MIBOC-A finishes in Kenya; builds professional partnerships, intelligence proficiency

US Marine Corps News

By Sgt. Tatum Vayavananda | Marine Corps Forces Africa | April 03, 2013

NAIROBI, Kenya -- The eighth iteration of the Military Intelligence Basic Officer Course-Africa graduated 28 partner-nation intelligence officers, March 20. The course brought together officers from the countries of Kenya, Uganda, Burundi, Ethiopia, Tanzania, and South Sudan for an eight-week course in Nairobi, Kenya.

“For me to be able to conduct and advise accordingly, I need to understand how my counterparts work,” said Kenyan Maj. Hesbon K. Mbithi, a navy intelligence officer from the Kenyan Defense Force. “The majority of the countries participating are from East Africa.”

The MIBOC-A class will help strengthen intelligence capabilities of East African militaries. MIBOC-A provides partner-nation junior offices with the skills to work as part of a military intelligence staff and introduced to topics such as: briefing fundamentals, creative and critical thinking, intelligence preparation of the operational environment, social-network analysis, and stability and peacekeeping operations.

“It is very important to learn from experiences of other countries; it goes a long way in the operations that the [Kenyan Defense Force] is doing,” said Mbithi. “The things I’ve learned in the class will definitely enhance my capacity if I ever deploy again. It enhances our ability in East Africa.”

MIBOC-A also enhances capacity for intelligence collection, analysis, information sharing among the participating nations, and provides an environment designed to promote collaboration methods within the region’s military intelligence community.
“Each country has different training and varying procedures and this is important because it integrates officers from different countries,” said Kenyan Lt. Vivian Aoga, an army intelligence officer for the Kenyan Defense Force.

Participating officers engage in intelligence protocol, techniques, tactics and procedures and participate in seminars, class room discussion, group projects, and working with a multi-national military intelligence staff.

“[Military] intelligence has a global affect, so [MIBOC-A] gives me a broader view and experience of what happens in the ‘field’,” said Aoga.

Leadership training is embedded throughout the course and reinforced with individual briefs and group exercises in the classroom.

“I can’t wait to get back and bring back what I’ve learned; I’m sure that my command will be proud that we were able to make friends and learn new skills, which is definitely something important as well,” said Aoga.

The course instructors included uniformed and civilian Department of Defense professionals from the Regional Joint Training Facility, Molesworth, U.K., along with support by U.S. Marine Corps Forces Africa, Stuttgart, Germany, and Combined Joint Task Force- Horn of Africa, Camp Lemonier, Djibouti.

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