Kenyan Soldiers Train, Prepare for Civil Affairs Mission

EMBAKASI, Kenya (Oct. 17, 2011) - Kenyan Army engineers talk to role players acting as members of a village to assess damage to a building during a civil affairs field training exercise in Embakasi, Kenya, October 17. The soldiers honed negotiation and mediation skills with indigenous populations to lessen the potential impact of military operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sergeant Marc I. Lane) CJTF-HOA Photo EMBAKASI, Kenya (Oct. 17, 2011) - Kenyan Army engineers talk to role players acting as members of a village to assess damage to a building during a civil affairs field training exercise in Embakasi, Kenya, October 17. The soldiers honed negotiation and mediation skills with indigenous populations to lessen the potential impact of military operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sergeant Marc I. Lane)
EMBAKASI, Kenya (Oct. 18, 2011) - Kenyan Army engineers talk to a role player acting as a village doctor to assess possible water source contamination during a civil affairs field training exercise in Embakasi, Kenya, October 18. Assessing water purity is one of many essential civil affairs missions and helps combat viruses, bacteria and parasites found in contaminated water that can cause waterborne diseases. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sergeant Marc I. Lane) CJTF-HOA Photo EMBAKASI, Kenya (Oct. 18, 2011) - Kenyan Army engineers talk to a role player acting as a village doctor to assess possible water source contamination during a civil affairs field training exercise in Embakasi, Kenya, October 18. Assessing water purity is one of many essential civil affairs missions and helps combat viruses, bacteria and parasites found in contaminated water that can cause waterborne diseases. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sergeant Marc I. Lane)
EMBAKASI, Kenya (Oct. 18, 2011) - Kenyan Army engineers participating in civil affairs training ask role players acting as a community for permission to enter their village during a field training exercise in Embakasi, Kenya, October 18. The soldiers participated in scenarios to improve their communication skills with the pretend village members to build trust and confidence. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sergeant Marc I. Lane) CJTF-HOA Photo EMBAKASI, Kenya (Oct. 18, 2011) - Kenyan Army engineers participating in civil affairs training ask role players acting as a community for permission to enter their village during a field training exercise in Embakasi, Kenya, October 18. The soldiers participated in scenarios to improve their communication skills with the pretend village members to build trust and confidence. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sergeant Marc I. Lane)
EMBAKASI, Kenya (Oct. 18, 2011) - Kenyan Army engineers walk and talk with a leader of a simulated village during a civil affairs field training exercise in Embakasi, Kenya, October 18. The soldiers learned to better communicate with civilians while assisting in infrastructure projects. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sergeant Marc I. Lane) CJTF-HOA Photo EMBAKASI, Kenya (Oct. 18, 2011) - Kenyan Army engineers walk and talk with a leader of a simulated village during a civil affairs field training exercise in Embakasi, Kenya, October 18. The soldiers learned to better communicate with civilians while assisting in infrastructure projects. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sergeant Marc I. Lane)
EMBAKASI, Kenya (Oct. 18, 2011) - Kenyan Army engineers assess a simulated damaged area within a training village in Embakasi, Kenya, during a civil affairs field training exercise October 18. The soldiers learned to work with local community members to gain the confidence and trust needed to complete their missions. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sergeant Marc I. Lane) CJTF-HOA Photo EMBAKASI, Kenya (Oct. 18, 2011) - Kenyan Army engineers assess a simulated damaged area within a training village in Embakasi, Kenya, during a civil affairs field training exercise October 18. The soldiers learned to work with local community members to gain the confidence and trust needed to complete their missions. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sergeant Marc I. Lane)
EMBAKASI, Kenya (Oct. 18, 2011) - A Kenyan Army engineer evaluates damage to a food storage facility during a civil affairs field training exercise in Embakasi, Kenya, October 18. The soldier took notes of the building conditions to report back to his mission commander for consideration on repairing the building, which would help improve the relationship with the village and its people. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sergeant Marc I. Lane) CJTF-HOA Photo EMBAKASI, Kenya (Oct. 18, 2011) - A Kenyan Army engineer evaluates damage to a food storage facility during a civil affairs field training exercise in Embakasi, Kenya, October 18. The soldier took notes of the building conditions to report back to his mission commander for consideration on repairing the building, which would help improve the relationship with the village and its people. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sergeant Marc I. Lane)
EMBAKASI, Kenya (Oct. 18, 2011) - A Kenyan Army engineer gives a detailed after action report to senior officers from a structure assessment scenario during a civil affairs field training exercise in Embakasi, Kenya, October 18. This kind of exercise enhances the ability of civil affairs officers to identify critical projects that can benefit local citizens. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sergeant Marc I. Lane) CJTF-HOA Photo EMBAKASI, Kenya (Oct. 18, 2011) - A Kenyan Army engineer gives a detailed after action report to senior officers from a structure assessment scenario during a civil affairs field training exercise in Embakasi, Kenya, October 18. This kind of exercise enhances the ability of civil affairs officers to identify critical projects that can benefit local citizens. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sergeant Marc I. Lane)
EMBAKASI, Kenya (Oct. 19, 2011) -Kenyan Army engineers transport a soldier in their team to safety from a simulated hostile area during a civil affairs field training exercise in Embakasi, Kenya, October 19. The two-person-support carry is ideal in some combat situations because both carrying members can easily see while maneuvering. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sergeant Marc I. Lane) CJTF-HOA Photo EMBAKASI, Kenya (Oct. 19, 2011) -Kenyan Army engineers transport a soldier in their team to safety from a simulated hostile area during a civil affairs field training exercise in Embakasi, Kenya, October 19. The two-person-support carry is ideal in some combat situations because both carrying members can easily see while maneuvering. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sergeant Marc I. Lane)
EMBAKASI, Kenya (Oct. 19, 2011) -Kenyan Army engineers and U.S. Army Staff Sergeant  Robert Benton discuss the techniques used to work with local civilians during a civil affairs field training exercise in Embakasi, Kenya, October 19. Benton, a member of the 402nd Civil Affairs Battalion team, facilitated the exercise with the Kenyan Army trainers and shared best practices on establishing relationships with civilians during assessments that would be required for critical infrastructure projects. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sergeant Marc I. Lane) CJTF-HOA Photo EMBAKASI, Kenya (Oct. 19, 2011) -Kenyan Army engineers and U.S. Army Staff Sergeant Robert Benton discuss the techniques used to work with local civilians during a civil affairs field training exercise in Embakasi, Kenya, October 19. Benton, a member of the 402nd Civil Affairs Battalion team, facilitated the exercise with the Kenyan Army trainers and shared best practices on establishing relationships with civilians during assessments that would be required for critical infrastructure projects. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sergeant Marc I. Lane)
EMBAKASI, Kenya (Oct. 19, 2011) -A Kenyan Army engineer takes notes during a civil affairs field training exercise held in Embakasi, Kenya, October 19. The information collected was then presented to the unit's mission commander to identify critical requirements needed by role-playing local citizens, enhancing the civil affairs capabilities that would be required during real-life missions. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sergeant Marc I. Lane) CJTF-HOA Photo EMBAKASI, Kenya (Oct. 19, 2011) -A Kenyan Army engineer takes notes during a civil affairs field training exercise held in Embakasi, Kenya, October 19. The information collected was then presented to the unit's mission commander to identify critical requirements needed by role-playing local citizens, enhancing the civil affairs capabilities that would be required during real-life missions. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sergeant Marc I. Lane)
Role-playing villagers become hostile toward a group of Kenyan Army engineers after a communications breakdown during a civil affairs field training exercise in Embakasi, Kenya, October 20.  The civil affairs soldiers learned the importance of how communication affects military-civilian relations in hostile, permissive and uncertain conditions. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sergeant Marc I. Lane) CJTF-HOA Photo Role-playing villagers become hostile toward a group of Kenyan Army engineers after a communications breakdown during a civil affairs field training exercise in Embakasi, Kenya, October 20. The civil affairs soldiers learned the importance of how communication affects military-civilian relations in hostile, permissive and uncertain conditions. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sergeant Marc I. Lane)
EMBAKASI, Kenya (Oct. 20, 2011) -A Kenyan Army engineer negotiates with foreign military forces role players during a civil affairs field training exercise in Embakasi, Kenya, October 20. The training was designed to improve the communication skills of 19 Kenyan engineers in preparation for possible real-life missions faced by the Kenyan Army. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sergeant Marc I. Lane) CJTF-HOA Photo EMBAKASI, Kenya (Oct. 20, 2011) -A Kenyan Army engineer negotiates with foreign military forces role players during a civil affairs field training exercise in Embakasi, Kenya, October 20. The training was designed to improve the communication skills of 19 Kenyan engineers in preparation for possible real-life missions faced by the Kenyan Army. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sergeant Marc I. Lane)
EMBAKASI, Djibouti (Oct. 21, 2011) - U.S. Army Captain Enilda Flores-Cabrera, 402nd Civil Affairs Battalion training team chief and mission commander, addresses 19 Kenyan Army engineers following a five-day civil affairs field training exercise in Embakasi, Kenya, October 21. "Civil Affairs is important in every climate," said Flores-Cabrera. "We use negotiation, mediation and assessment to get a better understanding of how to approach the issues at hand and how we can resolve it." (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sergeant Marc I. Lane) CJTF-HOA Photo EMBAKASI, Djibouti (Oct. 21, 2011) - U.S. Army Captain Enilda Flores-Cabrera, 402nd Civil Affairs Battalion training team chief and mission commander, addresses 19 Kenyan Army engineers following a five-day civil affairs field training exercise in Embakasi, Kenya, October 21. "Civil Affairs is important in every climate," said Flores-Cabrera. "We use negotiation, mediation and assessment to get a better understanding of how to approach the issues at hand and how we can resolve it." (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sergeant Marc I. Lane)

Nineteen Kenyan Army engineers from multiple units finished a five-day civil affairs field training exercise at the Amani Peace Operations Training Village in Embakasi, Kenya, October 21.

The soldiers participated in a series of scenarios designed and implemented by an instruction team made up of seven engineers from the Kenyan Army and facilitated by five U.S. Army soldiers from the 402nd Civil Affairs Battalion attached to Combined Joint Task Force - Horn of Africa. The exercise covered topics such as key leader engagements, assessing village structures and settling tribal disputes.

"We train hard, so we can fight easy. This training is important, especially now because our army is deploying," said Lieutenant Kenneth Rujema, a Kenyan Army engineer previously trained in civil affairs. "We need to have good relations between civilians and military so that commanders on the ground can focus on operations."

The training was focused on Kenyans communicating with one another to navigate various difficult civil affairs scenarios.

"It is important for our soldiers to know how to interact with civilians and know how to approach permissive, hostile and uncertain environments," Rujema said.

The week of practical exercise followed two weeks of civil affairs class room instruction aimed at preparing the Kenyan soldiers for situations that may occur during deployment missions.

"In the class, it's all theoretical on paper. Out here it's nerves and reaction; that's what counts when you're on a mission," said U.S. Army Captain Enilda Flores-Cabrera, 402nd Civil Affairs Battalion training team chief and mission commander. "When you get to the practical, you see how people are actually going to react, how people are going to conduct themselves."

"Civil Affairs is important in every climate," said Flores-Cabrera. "We use negotiation, mediation and assessment to get a better understanding how to approach the issues, how we can solve it and how we can help."

Local Kenyan civilians were employed as role players to act out the scenarios at the training village. This helped simulate the unpredictability and uncertainty of actual civil affairs missions.

"The actors were very important to the training," said Flores-Cabrera. "They made each situation as authentic as possible."

After the weeklong training, Kenyan Army engineer Nyambane Ezra said he would be able to employ this training in real-world situations.

"I learned about communication techniques to build relationships and gain the confidence of civilians," said Ezra. "The tools of communication assist us in undertaking operations."

After finishing the practical exercise, the Kenyan and American soldiers traveled to Thika, Kenya, where the students used their knowledge to engage in real civil affairs missions with the local population.

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