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Operation Odyssey Guard

As Operation Unified Protector, the NATO-led operation to enforce a no-fly zone over and naval blockade around Libya pursuant to UN Security Council Resolutions 1970 and 1973, began to wind down in late 2011, the US began planning to provide support for any potential US military missions in Libya following the fall of the regime of Moammar Gadhafi. The contingency operation was codenamed Operation Odyssey Guard.

In October 2011, US Africa Command (AFRICOM) directed US Army Africa (USARAF) to establish a joint task force to support any such contingency operations. Joint Task Force Odyssey Guard (JTF-OG) became the element tasked with the Odyssey Guard mission. The Commander of USARAF was designated as the commander of JTF-OG, which also included members of all for branches of the US military. The US Department of State was designated as the lead agency responsible for US-Libya relations in the post-conflict environment, requests for US military support would be made through the US Department of State to JTF-OG.

On 28 and 29 October 2011, JTF-OG conducted 2 aeromedical evacuation flights of Libyan fighters, seriously wounded in fighting with forces loyal to Moammar Gadhafi's regime, to medical facilities in Germany and the United States for treatment. JTF-OG also assisted in reopening the US Embassy in Tripoli (which included making sure that security at the embassy met US standards), provided explosive ordnance disposal assistance, and monitored the security of the chemical weapons in the Waddan storage complex in support of Operation Odyssey Guard. After the attack on the US consulate in Benghazi on 11 September 2012, it was acknowledged that the facility there had not been brought up to US standards for security for diplomatic missions around the world during Operation Odyssey Guard. Operation Odyssey Guard formally ended on 6 January 2012, and JTF-OG was inactivated.




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