FORT BELVOIR, Va. - The Provost Marshal's Office of the Military Intelligence Readiness Command (MIRC), U.S. Army Reserve, hosted a Level II Anti-Terrorism (AT) Officer Basic Course the week of March 7 - 11 at the Mosby Army Reserve Center here to provide AT guidance to Soldiers assigned as their unit's Anti-Terrorism Officer (ATO). The week-long class was conducted by a Mobile Training Team (MTT) from the Force Protection Training Division, U.S. Army Military Police School located at Fort Leonard Wood, Mo. Approximately 45 personnel from the MIRC as well as other Army Reserve commands attended. According to Maj. Christopher Gerdes, MIRC Provost Marshal, the course was not conducted because of any specific threat to the MIRC facilities or personnel. The AT Officer Basic Course is a mandatory requirement for Soldiers at the battalion level and above with the additional duty of ATO and is conducted for Army Active Duty and Reserve Soldiers on a regular basis. The course is open to staff sergeant through lieutenant colonel and includes civilian personnel as well. The MTT that taught the course is one of four teams from the Force Protection Training Division that travels worldwide, teaching and certifying ATOs. The course subjects included Physical Security, Prepare a Local Threat Assessment, and Implementing Random AT Measures. There are also multiple practical exercises including Conducting a Vulnerability Assessment and Conducting a Risk Assessment. Attendees must take and pass a final exam in order to be a certified ATO. "We teach students procedural regulations and doctrinal standards, develop their knowledge and understanding of numerous domestic and international terrorist groups, methodology concepts, and the AT Risk Management Process," said Noel Winterburg, Supervisory Training Instructor, Anti-Terrorism Branch, Force Protection Training Division, U.S. Army Military Police School. Once students have completed the course and are certified, they can return to their units ready to be an asset to their commanders regarding AT and security issues. "The ATO will be the commander's subject matter expert on anti-terrorism issues," said Winterburg. "The ATO will provide the commander with analyzed information so the commander can make a better decision on anti-terrorism risk management," he said. But situational awareness isn't just for trained AT officers. All Soldiers need to be aware of their surroundings. "MIRC units and personnel should take steps to understand the local threat environment where they live and work," said Gerdes. "This includes any travel destinations or locations for stops en-route," he said. Information Soldiers and Families need can be obtained by contacting their command ATO. Another source for information is the state department website, http://travel.state.gov, which offers current travel advisories and recommendations for locations overseas.