By Terra GoodNovember 21, 2019
Two foreign officers showed their commitment to their U.S. missions in New Cumberland, Pennsylvania, this Veterans Day.
Security assistance liaison officers (SALOs) Squadron Leader Glenn Hardwick with the Royal Australian Air Force and Captain (P) Simon Bowser with the Canadian Army participated in the local community's patriotic events.
Both Hardwick and Bowser are stationed at U.S. Army Security Assistance Command's Pennsylvania site.
Hardwick spoke at VFW Post 7415, emphasizing the sacrifices of military members throughout the world. He also provided a brief history on Sergeant Henry Gunther, the last American killed in action during World War I. Hardwick spent part of the day informing fellow veterans on the U.S.-Australian partnership.
"American veterans were delighted to learn that Australia has been alongside the USA in all major conflicts over the last 100 years," said Hardwick. "When we undertake military operations, we do so as part of a coalition. This partnership and cooperation is essential to mission success."
Bowser spent the holiday with U.S. military officers who were invited to speak to students of History teacher Jake Miller at Mountainview Middle School. He spent most of the visit answering questions and sharing his unique perspective on the distinctly American Veteran's Day holiday.
"Participating in this event allowed me to have a better understanding of how the U.S. recognizes its service members," said Bowser. America's youth are being educated and learning respect for America's heroes, and it instilled a greater respect in me for America's educators. It has truly been the highlight of my experiences here."
The U.S. Army Security Assistance Command at Redstone Arsenal, Alabama, and New Cumberland, Pennsylvania, manages the Army's foreign military sales. Currently the command manages approximately 6,000 FMS cases valued at greater than $200 billion. USASAC command interfaces with 119 Security Cooperation Offices worldwide and provides security assistance and FMS to over 150 nations and international partners. For more information about USASAC, visit www.army.mil/info/organization/usasac.
WHAT IS FMS
FMS is the U.S. government's program for transferring defense articles, services and training to other sovereign nations and international organizations. Under FMS, the U.S. government procures defense articles on behalf of the foreign customer. Countries approved to participate may obtain materiel and services by paying with their own funds or funds provided through U.S. government-sponsored assistance programs, and in certain cases on a grant basis.
SALOs are foreign military officers temporarily assigned to USASAC to represent their countries and help manage their FMS cases on site. They are funded through their countries' cases. The liaisons' work is meant to benefit both their respective country and USASAC by improving communications and response times. Activities performed by officers include determining FMS logistics, financial and technical data; inputting requisitions and modifications; coordinating with freight forwarders and transportations companies; coordinating supply discrepancy reports; participating in Case Management Reviews and Program Management Reviews; and presenting their respective countries' FMS policy or operation concerns to the SALO Committee chairman and International Customer User Group.