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Seminar on Combat Service Support in mountain operations

The NATO MW COE organized a seminar on Combat Service Support (CSS) in Mountains Operations from 4-8 November 2019, with the aim of analyzing and discussing the capabilities of CSS units as part of a Light Mountain Infantry Brigade. The seminar was designed to provide a general understanding of the employment, tasking and capabilities of CSS in mountain operations.

The requirement to conduct military operations in mountainous regions presents commanders with challenges distinct from those encountered in less rugged environments, demanding increased perseverance, strength, will, and courage. The terrain, characterized by steep slopes, great variations in local relief, natural obstacles, and a lack of accessible routes, restricts mobility, drastically increases movement times, limits the effectiveness of some weapons, and complicates supply operations. Combined with the terrain, the weather, variable with both the season and the time of day, can greatly affect mobility and tactical operations. Even under non-violent conditions, operations in a mountain environment may pose significant risks and dangers.

The 4-day seminar was attended by 20 participants and lecturers from 9 nations and 3 NATO COEs. It was mainly conducted in the classroom (ex-cathedra teaching and discussion), with certain topics being covered outdoors.

The lectures were related to a general overview of CSS, its structure, assets and capabilities, and its role in support of mountain operations.

The instructors/lecturers, from Austria, Croatia, Germany, Italy, Slovenia, NATO MILMED COE and NATO ENSEC COE, belong either to the military environment or to the academic sphere. They are eminently recognized as Subject Matter Experts, with practical experience in the field.