INNSWORTH, UK – The Allied Rapid Reaction Corps (ARRC)
has held an exercise at its Gloucestershire base to develop the role of the
Corps headquarters on the 'deep' battlefield.
Exercise ‘Arrcade Thor’ invited units from across
the British Army and NATO to Imjin Barracks in Innsworth to look at corps-level war-fighting, and develop lessons learned from previous exercises ‘Arrcade
Fusion 17’ last year and ‘Dynamic Front 18’ earlier this year.
"Thor concentrates on ‘the deep’ and specifically
our role: the corps, and the corps headquarters in it,” said UK Lieutenant
General Tim Radford CB DSO OBE, commander of HQ ARRC. "It forms a key part of
our corps re-calibration, and aims to identify the gaps in our capabilities and knowledge.
"The purpose is to understand how we can improve
our operational effectiveness as a corps headquarters, building on the success
of the work which we did last year,” said Radford.
‘Deep’ operations are considered to be those conducted
at long range and over an extended timescale, against adversary forces not engaged
at a more conventional ‘close’ range. Typically they may include information operations
or surveillance and target acquisition.
The exercise attendees were split into working
groups and given tactical vignettes to work against, developing and refining
various aspects of corps war-fighting.
The primary officer in charge of Thor, British Army
Major Ash Howard, thinks that while the exercise was successful, there is still
work to do looking toward the future.
"It’s a big step forward within the concept of
corps war-fighting in deep operations, and there’s been some really innovative
ideas,” he said. "Thor is not the end solution. It’s a conceptual exercise, so
we haven’t tested this, and a lot of the output will need development over the
The ARRC will now take lessons learned from Thor as
it prepares to assume its role as the head of NATO’s Very High Readiness Joint
Task Force headquarters later this year.
"Now we have to take those concepts and translate
them into reality,” added Howard.
Story by HQ ARRC Public Affairs