Rapid Execution of an Analysis of Alternatives for NATO Special Operations HQ A Smart Defence Approach
Cervantes, Marcos A.
Powers, Joshua S.
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NATO Special Operations Headquarters (NSHQ) determined a need for an air wing after years of conducting operations in Afghanistan. Air enablers are critical to Special Operations Forces combat effectiveness. This capability is not assembled overnight, and training and equipment are vital to mission success. Under the new national strategy for a Smart Defense approach, a Rapid Analysis of Alternatives is needed to find the best way to establish an NSHQ Air Wing. In order to pursue a Smart Defense approach, the U.S. strategy needs to provide a short-term plan for rapid implementation. As the framework nation for the NSHQ, the U.S. would bear much of the economic burden for developing this capability. The most cost-effective approach to this strategy is to employ Excess Defense Articles for immediate use in NATO. The retiring CH-47D and UH-60L aircraft are proven capabilities still being used in Afghanistan and provide a stop-gap solution with low cost to the U.S. This solution provides an immediate capability to support NSHQ and provides time for member nations to begin training while working through political issues. In the long term, this strategy alleviates the U.S.s cost burden and allows NATO to have a larger role in future conflicts.
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