Kunsan drill progresses to paper phase
After four weeks of planning and two days of overseeing almost 150 observers, Senior Master Sgt. Michael Ehnert’s job really has just begun.
As Kunsan Air Base’s exercise evaluation leader, Ehnert will be spending his weekend writing up the results of Beverly High 04-01, a combat response drill that finished late Tuesday.
And even though the exercise was limited to Kunsan, it still involved more than 2,500 airmen and civilians in almost every facet of operations — from pilots to mail clerks to security forces.
“Normally, we’ll do a full peninsula exercise with 7th Air Force, Osan and other agencies,” Ehnert said by phone Wednesday. “It’s a little bit abbreviated but the wing commander here wanted a little more practice and it was difficult to find the time with scheduling and Osan’s runway closures.”
So Kunsan staged its own. Planners spent almost a month devising scenarios and expected responses, trying to give the exercise a fresh feel.
“It’s pretty flexible,” Ehnert said. “We spent time at intel. We change the script itself for each exercise, to make it more realistic threat-wise.”
In this week’s exercise, various attacks and facilities’ defense strategies were acted out, and services at several areas were limited. The dining facility, for instance, was open just in the evening hours. The gym operated on reduced hours. Anyone outside a building was considered “in play,” officials said.
For the evaluation process, inspectors who observed the drills send their evaluation reports to Ehnert, who combines them into one final report. That opus generally is due about a week after an exercise ends, he said.