Text: Michael Linden-Vørnle, DATG. Photo: Guy Toremans, Belgium
There has been worked both hard and well. Since previous Monday, the 16th August, the many ships that have participated in DANEX 2010 have been through a long row of training serials and have faced up with air defence, fire fighting, submarine hunting, maritime interdiction operations, boarding of merchant vessels and much more.
During the last five days of the exercise, the heat has really been on. Here the ships have been part of a large maritime role playing game in an artificial reality with fictitious, but not unrealistic countries.
In this game, the ships have played the role of a multinational force that was tasked to create security at sea in an unstable region with piracy and terrorist activities.
In this so-called operations phase, the ships have not known beforehand which challenges they would meet, while solving their tasks.
DANEX 2010 has been planned and conducted by Danish Task Group that during the first part of the exercise was afloat on board the command ship HDMS THETIS. This Monday the staff went ashore and conducted the last, intense days from the bunker at Naval District Bornholm.
“It has been a good exercise,” says Commodore Aage Buur Jensen who is commander of Danish Task Group. “Since it was my first exercise as commander of the staff, I was naturally exited to see how it would go. I can only say that I am satisfied with what I’ve seen. The participating ships have done a good job and my staff has been able to adapt the exercise along the way, when weather or other circumstances made it necessary,” Aage Buur Jensen explains.
More than 20 ships from 11 different nations have participated in DANEX 2010 – including one of the standing NATO mine countermeasures groups. During the exercise, the mine hunters have not only been practicing. They have found and demolished several old mines which have been on the sea floor since the Second World War.
"This just shows that there’s a short way from exercise to reality. Some of the situations we have exposed the DANEX participants to, they will most likely meet in the real world. Now, at least, they are better prepared,” Aage Buur Jensen concludes.