By Capt. Jaymon Bell (12th Combat Aviation Brigade)October 20, 2017
KRAKOW, Poland--Twenty-six NATO and Allied partner nations attended the third annual Strong Europe Aviation Rotary Wing Summit, 17 Oct., 2017, hosted by the 12th Combat Aviation Brigade.
The conference gathered senior Aviators from all over Europe to further build a common operating picture, establish future joint training, and enhance habitual partnerships between the Allied nations.
The keynote speaker was Maj. Gen. Jan Sliwka, 1st Deputy Commander, General Command of the Polish Armed Forces. Sliwka's opening remarks highlighted the exercises since the Warsaw summit in 2014 and reiterated the importance of training together in realistic scenarios.
"I think this event serves to represent a positive influence of increased NATO presence in Europe," said Sliwka.
The conference used multiple small group sessions to address future training events and advance dialogue on standardizing helicopter training and doctrine across Europe.
The conference included a brief on the USAREUR exercise schedule for FY 18 and 19 in order to inform those attending of the potential for rotary wing participation. Representatives from 7th Army Training Command were also present to brief the attending aviators on how training events can be shaped to meet country specific aviation outcomes.
Senior Aviators from Albania, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Lithuania, the Former Yugoslavian Republic of Macedonia, Netherlands, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Turkey, and the United Kingdom attended the conference.
"We believe we have the right audience here to say yes to new training events throughout the coming year," said Col. Kenneth Cole, the 12th Combat Aviation Brigade Commander.
The 12th Combat Aviation Brigade trains and conducts aviation support across the full spectrum of unified land operations for United States Army Europe, European Command and our allied and NATO partners.