U.S. Southern Command conference focuses on partnerships, joint initiatives with WHINSEC students
By Maj. Charon Camarasa, Student, Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation /
MIAMI, Fla. – U.S. Southern Command staff members visited with students from the Army Command General Staff College of the Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation during a conference here in early March.
The intent of the conference was to communicate to the WHINSEC students the importance of partnerships, joint initiatives and accomplishing common goals by means of a united front and combined effort with partner nations.
The summit addressed the regional dynamics of destabilized environments, external influences, and some of the challenges faced by SOUTHCOM which included the declination of economic growth, poverty and inequality, natural disasters, and violence.
For the last few months, officers attending the WHINSEC course at Fort Benning, Ga., have been conducting operational-specific training exercises that simulate inter-agency planning, multi-faceted command centers, and developing plans in collaboration with coalition forces.
These training exercises were developed to help students gain a better understanding of how to synthesize individual and departmental work flows into comprehensive planning processes, which in turn integrates well within a complex operational environment.
The visit from SOUTHCOM was an enriching experience; the students interacted with the staff and asked a lot of questions.
One Paraguayan Army officer said the conference was very informative.
“The SOUTHCOM staff provided detailed information on its mission and capabilities,” said Lt. Col. Justo Araujo. “I learned how SOUTHCOM manages external challenges within our hemisphere.”
Araujo was working as an administrative and financial advisor for the Ministry of National Defense of the Republic of Paraguay before being selected to attend the WHINSEC course.
WHINSEC hosts international military officers from various countries throughout Latin America, all handpicked by their respective countries, to attend the integrated year-long course at Fort Benning, Ga. The course facilitates training alongside U.S. counterparts on military doctrine, history, human rights, and senior officer leadership development.