By Army Contracting Command Public Affairs OfficeMay 22, 2014
Maj. Marlin Paschal, the 413th Contracting Support Brigade command judge advocate, participated in a military-to-military exchange between the U.S. and India.
Paschal is spending time at the Indian Institute of Military Law at Kamptee Cantonment Area, India.
According to United States Army Pacific's mission statement, an important aspect of its mission is to build military relationships that develop partner defense capacity in order to contribute to a stable and secure U.S. Pacific Command area of responsibility.
According to Paschal, the USARPAC staff judge advocate selected him to participate.
"I honestly don't know who all he considered," he said. "However, I'm sure I had a pretty significant competitive advantage since I had just helped his team with resolving a contract - funding issue for an upcoming exercise in India a month prior to my selection."
Paschal said, since its inception in 2009, the Fort Shafter, Hawaii-based 413th CSB has contributed to USARPAC's formula for success by providing direct contracting support to USARPAC elements within the PACOM engagement area. This is just another way the command provides support.
"The purpose of this engagement is two-fold," Paschal said. "First, it is designed to nurture and enhance the relationship between USARPAC and the Indian army. Second, USARPAC hopes to develop a better understanding of the Indian legal process and identify possible mutual interest points that both nations can possibly benefit from in the future."
This is the third iteration of this engagement and Paschal is the first attorney with a contract and fiscal law background to be selected for this mission.
Paschal said a large part of his selection was based on his expertise, because USARPAC planners want to get an insider perspective of the legal challenges the Indian army faces when providing and receiving operational support from U.S. forces.
Paschal is attending a course with eight Indian judge advocates representing the Indian army, Indian navy, and the Indian national security guard. The course largely focuses on the Indian army court-martial process, but also covers operational law and other service-related practice areas.
"All parties recognize that as the Indian military further embarks on the world stage the core competencies of its judge advocates will increase," he said.
For his part, Paschal has given presentations to the Indian students and instructors on the roles and responsibilities of U.S. judge advocates, an overview of the U.S. court-martial system, an overview of multinational logistics support and a basic case study discussing contracting challenges in a deployed environment.
"The contracting stuff was a bit over their heads but we all learned something from the back and forth, which is a key reason for my being here," said Paschal.
The course ran from April 21 through May 17.