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‘Bold Quest’ Multinational Exercise Underway in New Mexico

By Nick Simeone
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, May 16, 2014 – The U.S. military and more than a dozen allied nations are conducting exercises in the New Mexico desert designed to test new technologies, improve interoperability, assess capabilities and leverage experiences gained in wartime.

Known as “Bold Quest,” the multiday, multinational event at the White Sands Missile Range involves all four military branches, the National Guard, U.S. Special Operations Command and participants or observers from Australia, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Sweden and Britain.

Led by the Joint Staff, the drill, in conjunction with one being carried out at White Sands by the Army, is intended to find ways to maximize resource sharing across a range of capabilities through simulated or actual events while identifying critical gaps and solutions.

This is the 11th year of Bold Quest, which in the past has focused on operational needs in Iraq and Afghanistan.

“The last couple of years, I think, reflect more of a focus on future operations,” said John Miller of the Joint Staff, Bold Quest’s operational manager, citing integrated air and missile defense and cyber applications as examples.

Among the technologies being demonstrated are radios, tactical data links and network equipment used to support various ground and air environments.

“One of the things that we found is that technology doesn’t stagnate,” said Joseph Chacon, also of the Joint Staff. Bold Quest, he added, “provides an opportunity to work with our coalition partners and their systems that are being developed with a similar capability so we can work side by side and make sure in the future that those systems will operate well together on the battlefield.”

In addition to White Sands, Bold Quest-related exercises also are underway at Fort Bliss, Texas, and New Mexico’s Holloman Air Force Base.

The exercises will wrap up May 23 after which a report will be provided to military leaders of the countries taking part.

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