By JESSE LEON GUERRERO
Joint Region Marianas Public Affairs
ASAN, Guam—U.S. Naval Base Guam sailors and civilian personnel participated in Exercise Citadel Pacific 2013 on Sept. 10-12.
Citadel Pacific is an annual training exercise designed to enhance readiness of personnel and not in response to any specific threat.
Paul Cahill, a contractor supporting commander, Navy Installation Command’s N7 Training and Readiness Directorate, said the threat of terrorism is a very real one that we have to be ready for.
“We have to demonstrate that we’re ready by performing and executing our plans and pre-plan responses in a very realistic environment that matches what they can see as an operational environment,” he said. “Then be able to take those lessons learned to improve the way we train, the way we equip our force and the way we modify our plans and procedures.”
Several scenarios conducted in the week included a boat attack at Sierra and Tango piers, alarm responses and active shooter exercises at the NBG headquarters and Polaris Point. The base also increased its security level at the entrance gates at different times of the exercise.
“Participants respond to the challenge and their capabilities are way above average right now,” said NBG installation training officer Olympio Magofna. “We can feel really safe when we’re down here at Naval Base Guam.”
He said the exercise benefits the installations exercise planners and role-playing participants by giving them the opportunity to train for potential threats.
Joint Region Marianas and NBG tenant commands such as Commander, Submarine Squadron 15, Coastal Riverine Group 1 Det. Guam, and Explosive Ordnance Disposal Mobile Unit 5 also participated in the exercise.
NBG Security and CRG-1 Det. Guam partnered to conduct an active shooter exercise in front of the submarine tender USS Frank Cable. A security response team responded to the situation and engaged in a mock firefight with the shooters minutes after a simulated vehicle-borne improvised explosive device was set off.
Master-at-Arms 1st Class Isiah Douglas, of NBG Security, was part of the team that took down the suspects and said he would like to see the exercise done more often as it is a good experience for junior security members to practice being consistent and shooting on the move.
“It’s just a process of training them, getting them more ready,” Douglas said. “All of that comes with time.”
Master-at-Arms 2nd Class Darrin Campbell, of CRG-1 Det. Guam, said the exercise allowed him to take a different perspective of an individual involved in an active shooter situation as he played the role of an attacker.
“It gives us an idea of how to counteract that [threat],” Campbell said. “We’ve got to be more precise.”