The latest edition of the Helicopter Tactics Symposium was hosted by the Czech Republic this week. It took place in Prague from 1-3 December and gathered around 60 attendees.
The fifth edition of this event provided a forum for detailed discussion to 60 helicopter tactics instructors and experts coming from 12 countries, as well as representatives of the Helicopter Tactics Course (HTC), Joint Air Power Competence Centre (JAPCC), AIRCOM Ramstein and NATO Special Operations Headquarters (NSHQ).
Briefings and discussions covered the latest lessons learned from current operations in Iraq, Syria, Mali and Afghanistan. Participants discussed various topics such as air assault operations planning process, target planning, vehicle interdiction, convoy escort and cooperation between attack and support helicopters.
All these topics aim to update the Helicopter Exercise Programme's SOP (Standard Operating Procedures), which form the backbone document of the programme. They also allowed participants to start working on the scenario of the upcoming HEP exercise Italian Blade, which will take place in June and July next year in Viterbo. Initial information for exercise Cold Blade 2016 was also presented by the representative of the host nation, Finland.
At the end of the event, participants once again stressed the need for continued exchange of the latest tactical procedures within the HEP community.