CONTENT PREVIEW
Military Capabilities

Jordan aims for greater close air support autonomy

08 January 2018

Key Points

  • A Canadian-led team has trained the first cohort of Jordanian joint terminal attack controllers
  • The Jordan Armed Forces is setting up its own training capabilities

The air-land integration capabilities of the Jordan Armed Forces (JAF) have received a boost from a Canadian-led multinational mobile training team (MTT). Follow-on plans are being developed for a Jordanian national joint terminal attack controller (JTAC) instructional capability.A Canadian JTAC instructor in discussion with JAF JTAC trainees undergoing training at an air-ground weapons range in the Jordanian desert in early 2017. (Canadian Armed Forces)A Canadian JTAC instructor in discussion with JAF JTAC trainees undergoing training at an air-ground weapons range in the Jordanian desert in early 2017. (Canadian Armed Forces)

Assembly of the MTT began in late 2016 under the auspices of the Canadian JTAC school at Gagetown. The latter was responding to a Jordanian request initially lodged with the US-led Joint Fire Support Executive Steering Committee for the in-country provision of a US JTAC memorandum of agreement (MOA)-accredited course for JTACs.

Speaking at the 2017 Omega Close Air Support conference in Bristol, in the United Kingdom, Warrant Officer Ken Power, a Gagetown-based JTAC Standards and Evaluation (STANEVAL) examiner, said the task had filtered down to his organisation only two months before the MTT was required to be on the ground.

The team core was provided by three Canadian JTAC instructors (JTAC-Is), supplemented by others from Australia, France, Poland, and the United States. As lead country, Canada was responsible for undertaking an initial reconnaissance of the in-country facilities and ranges, plus assuring availability of airspace, air support, maps, and safety support. All basic course material was supplied by Canada, along with a mobile simulator.

Power noted that the latter was supplanted only a few days into the course by a VBS2-based Deployable Virtual Training Environment (DVTE) simulator loaned by the US Marine Corps (USMC). The MTT was able to derive considerable additional support in theatre from the USMC, which had an Air Naval Gunfire Liaison Company (ANGLICO) detachment deployed in Jordan at the time.

The standard Canadian Forces JTAC course is spread over 10 weeks and, according to Power, is “heavy on homework”.

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