Peruvian Air Force Trains in Operational Law

first_imgBy Julieta Pelcastre/Diálogo March 11, 2019 As part of their defense cooperation efforts, the Peruvian Air Force (FAP, in Spanish) and Air Forces Southern (AFSOUTH), U.S. Southern Command (SOUTHCOM)’s Air Force component, trained Peruvian service members in the legal field that covers military interventions in the Apurímac, Ene, and Mantaro Rivers Valley (VRAEM, in Spanish). The V Operational Law Seminar, conducted February 4-7 at Las Palmas Military Air Base in Lima, Peru, helped strengthen efforts to counter terrorists and narcotrafficking groups. “The goal is to provide operational law education to FAP pilots, special forces, and intelligence and air and law defense personnel, and learn the rules of engagement in unconventional warfare scenarios,” Colonel Fernando Kahn, the FAP General Secretariat’s legal advisor, told Diálogo. “Unlike other seminars, this one involved young officers: lieutenants, captains, and majors who are headed to the VRAEM or are already there.” For three days, students got to know the exercises the U.S. military conducts under operational law. The officers also analyzed FAP’s actions in VRAEM conflicts in the last 25 years. AFSOUTH’s legal advisors shared their knowledge, research, and experiences regarding the application of operational law, close air support, and what to do when the commander doesn’t want to listen to their lawyer. “When the commander doesn’t want to listen to the legal advisor and acts [independently], it might become an illegal situation,” Peruvian Air Force Lieutenant Colonel Ángel Daniel Bravo Bonifaz, an officer with the FAP’s Special Forces Group’s General Staff Operations, told Diálogo. FAP has had a legal operational advisor in the VRAEM’s air component for more than four years. “He’s the one who advises the commander one way or another. We then work to ensure that he is accepted, understood, and listened to,” Col. Kahn said. “SOUTHCOM’s support for this seminar is a sign of confidence in FAP to train our personnel.” Terminology “Another issue of interest among attendees was the training of U.S. commanders in law schools to learn and use the same terminology than legal operational advisors, and discipline in U.S. military tasks,” said Col. Kahn. “The United States has a reputable military court system, with serious sanctions when norms are violated.” Peruvian military operations in the VRAEM must have a legal advisor before and after military action. The legal advisor must apply the rules of engagement that determine how and against whom force will be used during a military intervention, as well as the armed forces’ limits in undertaking and pursuing operations against hostile groups. The advisor must also make an intelligence report that contributes to the legal backing and success of the armed forces’ actions in the area. “Under this concept, we need the norm of rules of engagement Section 13 to become [official], because it will be further protection and a means for legal and sound procedure for all the elements working in the VRAEM’s conflict area,” said Col. Kahn. “The rules of engagement should be established within rules of operation. Not all missions are the same,” said Lt. Col. Bravo. Strategies and tactics The VRAEM is Peru’s top region for coca crops and the area of operations of the remnants of the terrorist group Shining Path. Crops are processed to manufacture cocaine, which is transported to Mexico, the United States, Africa, and Europe. The VRAEM Special Command (CE-VRAEM, in Spanish) conducts counter terrorist operations and joint efforts with the Peruvian National Police in the area, under the concept of operational law. FAP takes part as an air component, and FAP’s Special Operations Group deploys patrols to execute the CE-VRAEM commander’s plans. The mission of the military interventions is to preserve the lives of the population and service members, crush the hostile group’s capacity, defend the state, and protect public and private property. Lt. Col. Bravo said that enemy strategies and tactics are those of guerilla warfare: hit-and-run, ambushes, raids, seizing arms for their own use, and using antipersonnel mines and explosive artifacts. “To confront the enemy, we also use special warfare [techniques], and the main thing we need to consider is the element of surprise. In a way, the rules of engagement should be for forces to maintain that element of surprise to get the required military advantage.” As civilians are present during air-ground exercises in the VRAEM, it’s essential for the commander to remember their operational law training, that they have an operational lawyer, and that their staff has operational law knowledge. This gives the commander absolute confidence to decide any course of action about the mission. “From a legal viewpoint, the operational lawyer is the commander’s right-hand man,” said Lt. Col. Bravo. “Due to the importance of the legal advisor’s timely and efficient advice to the commander, FAP will seek to organize an operational law conference before the end of 2019, not only for elements of the Air Force, but also the Navy, the Army, and the National Police,” said Col. Kahn.last_img read more

Lakers, Steve Nash both cautious and optimistic about health

first_imgThe enthusiasm in Steve Nash’s voice sounded infectious. His smile widened as he spoke. And the Lakers guard appeared relaxed after nearly completing a week of training camp in which he flourished on the court without injuring himself.Nash has spent the past four months in this state, reporting “no hiccups” this past offseason while healing the nerve root irritation in his back and hamstrings that sidelined him last season for all but 15 games. So even if Nash described his past two injury-riddled seasons as a “nightmare,” the Lakers’ 40-year-old point guard seemed as excited as an unproven rookie eager to crack an NBA roster.“Because it’s so tenuous, I never act like I’m ready to go and am past everything,” Nash said in an interview with this newspaper. “I’ve gone through too much to feel that way, but I feel good.” Nash could hardly describe himself the same way a day after saying those words. He missed most of Saturday’s practice after rolling his left ankle on the foot of rookie forward Julius Randle during a conditioning drill. Nash maintained he will practice today. But even if Lakers coach Byron Scott expressed optimism that Nash’s latest injury marks just a “minor setback,” the episode only illustrated the season-long uncertainty about whether Nash can stay healthy.Yet, Nash’s overall outlook has appeared different for one specific reason.Last year, his health had deteriorated so much that he spent most of his summer rehabbing his back and hamstrings with his personal trainer, Rick Celebrini. Nash could not sprint until two weeks before training camp started. This year, Nash reported feeling healthy enough by May to train both without restrictions and without Celebrini’s guidance. Hence, Nash may prolong his NBA career once his $9.8 million contract with the Lakers expires after this season. That decision hinges on a few variables.“My health, enjoyment and effectiveness,” Nash said. “If I have a chance to play, it would have to be here. I’m not going to at this stage move somewhere else for a season and move my kids there.” Nash also plans to stay in Los Angeles whenever he retires. But beyond staying involved as the general manager of the Canadian basketball team and with his film production company, Meathawk, Nash’s post-retirement life sounds uncertain. “Maybe it will take me a year, two years or five years,” Nash said. “The longer I take, the better. Then I’ll be certain with what I want to do instead of rushing into something.” The Lakers have stayed equally cautious about Nash.The Lakers declined to waive Nash this offseason through the stretch provision to maximize cap flexibility. But they also added more depth in case Nash returns to the trainer’s room. The Lakers acquired Jeremy Lin in a trade from Houston. The Lakers paid $1.4 million to the Washington Wizards to secure the rights to their 46th draft pick, using it to select Missouri guard Jordan Clarkson. The Lakers also added veteran NBA guard Ronnie Price.Both Scott and Lakers trainer Gary Vitti have suggested Nash will stay limited with playing time and on back-to-back games even if he stays healthy. “The nerves have calmed down, but they can become inflamed again,” Vitti said in an interview with this newspaper. “The idea is to try to play him, practice him and treat him in a way that he can accomplish the task without lighting up those nerves again.” So far, so good.Both Scott and Kobe Bryant have called Nash playing in training camp like “the old Steve” who won two NBA MVP awards and climbed to third place on the league’s all-time assists list. Nash has bought into Scott’s training camp that has emphasized both conditioning and sitting him at the end of practices. Nash also described Scott’s Princeton-based offense as “less complicated” than the one under Mike Brown, who was fired five games into the 2012-13 season. Even if Nash and Bryant have not played together since March 30, 2013, neither player anticipates much of an adjustment since they will play their natural positions as respective passers and scorers. That role differs to when Bryant last played with Nash as a facilitator, while he became a spot-up shooter. Scott has leaned toward starting Nash partly for that reason. But he may become a reserve, both to preserve his body and accommodate Lin’s growth. “I’ll do whatever is asked and what is best for the team,” Nash said. “I would love to leave the guys with something and see them flourish.”It appears Nash has already made a difference. Beyond Lin soaking up how Nash thrives with superior footwork and pick-and-roll execution, Lin sounded inspired about his rigorous dietary and recovery habits.“To do it for a prolonged period of time is something you have to appreciate,” Lin said. “It’s always hard to stay at the top.”Nash has understood that reality for the past two years, his reunion with former Lakers coach Mike D’Antoni hardly capturing the magic they produced with the Phoenix Suns. “I felt bad for him,” Nash said. “He did a terrific job with the guys that he had. We were always injured and we had new guys together. I don’t know if anyone could have a great season.”So what about Nash’s upcoming season?“If I’m mobile and moving well, I think I can play at a good level,” Nash said. “We’ll see how that is. It’s been so long since I’ve had a good run at it. I’m going to try my best.”center_img Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Errorlast_img read more