Third Army meets with Jordanian leaders
October 18, 2011
By Cpl. Jordan Johnson
Third Army/ARCENT Public Affairs
AMMAN, Jordan -- Four senior noncommissioned officers from U.S. Army Central Command met with top leaders from the Jordanian Armed Forces to discuss the evolving nature of the NCO corps here Sept. 22.
2011 has been dubbed the year of the NCO for the JAF. In an effort to shift power and authority to NCOs, Jordan leaders have looked to the U.S. for guidance.
"The U.S. Army NCO corps is a role model for us," said Jordanian Brig. Gen. Mohammad Farghal, chief of staff for personnel. "We are trying to reestablish our NCO corps to be the real backbone of our army."
However, such drastic change won't happen overnight. The empowerment of the NCOs could take anywhere from two years to as many as 20, Farghal said.
"All of our objectives are very clear and we are doing everything we can to meet them," stated the general. "In some cases, it will take a whole generation to notice the change."
Top personnel from the JAF discussed, reviewed and implemented new rules and regulations, but for the mindset to be effective, patience is needed, Farghal said.
"It will take some time to get where we want to be, but we've started with the right footing and will hopefully get there," Farghal stated. "This is something that will take time. We can't be in a hurry."
In addition to needing time, it is also important for everyone to be on the same page.
"We want all of our army working together so we can see the change," said Jordanian Sgt. Maj. of the Army Mohammad Al-Smadi. "I want the change to be faster, but we need to change the standard so you can tell the difference in all the units. We can apply things from your Army, but Jordanize it."
Throughout decades, Jordan and the U.S. have developed a strong partnership, which is aiding in the current philosophical changes the countries are working towards. Al-Smadi knows if he needs something, all he has to do is get behind a computer.
"The U.S. is willing and able to help us," Al-Smadi stated. "ARCENT is supporting us. If I need any information, I email someone from ARCENT and get what I need."
Despite all the talks about changes and overhauls, the Jordanian army is a strong force and has many outstanding leaders, said Farghal.
"We have some excellent NCOs, but the objective is to have the bulk of our corps at the same level," Farghal stated. "We want them to be professional enough and competent enough to lead. The plan is to have a qualified, experienced NCO next to each commander at all levels."
After having a certain set of standards and expectations for the first part of the enlistment, experienced servicemembers are quick to identify the modifications of their service.
"The change is very evident to Jordanian soldiers that have been in five, ten years," said U.S. Army Sgt. 1st Class Franklin Flowers, operations NCO, National Guard affairs and Corvallis, Ore. native. "They all sense the shift and are all starting to grasp the direction the change is going."
Ultimately, both the U.S. and JAF personnel want to be successful, have a strong NCO Corps and be prepared to defend the ideals, beliefs and freedoms the countries have.
"We have established a good friendship," Al-Smadi said. "We have the same goals. The U.S. NCO corps is a good one and is a model for us."
Third Army is shaping the future of operations by developing strong working partnerships with countries in the U.S. Army Central Command area of responsibility and assisting when help is requested.