Ramstein supports 7,000-person exercise

Capt. Erin Dorrance
Kaiserslautern American

***image1***Seven thousand NATO and military troops traveled to Cape Verde in July
to conduct a two-week exercise called Steadfast Jaguar ’06.  

The international exercise was designed to demonstrate the capability
of the NATO Response Force, outside the normal geographic area of
influence of alliance countries. The exercise included a scenario that
called for a “show of military force” and the eruption of a volcano on
one of the islands, summoning a large-scale relief operation.

Sixty five Ramstein troops were involved in the exercise, said Lt. Col.
Steve Wessberg, 86th Air Mobility Squadron Director of Operations and
senior ranking officer for Ramstein counterparts deployed to Steadfast
Jaguar ’06.  

“Team Ramstein performed brilliantly,” said Colonel Wessberg. “Everyone
stepped up to the plate and worked well together.” The 86th Contingency
Response Group deployed Operations, Security Forces and Medical
elements, and the 86th Air and Space Communications Group deployed
elements of the 1st Combat Communications Squadron to form an
Expeditionary Group led by Colonel Wessberg.  

The exercise took place on Sao Vicente, one of ten islands that make up
the Cape Verde archipelago.  Sal island is where most exercise
participants landed to board military aircraft en route to Sao Vicente.
Ramstein Airmen were located at both islands and worked three different

The 38th Construction and Training Squadron and one Airmen from the
735th Civil Engineer Squadron were responsible for installing a mobile
aircraft arresting system for Spangdahlem F-16 Falcons arriving into
Cape Verde, said Tech. Sgt. Tracy Lintz, 38th CTS NCO in charge of
Aircraft Arresting Systems A Element. The AAS equipment is required to
be installed for all U.S. fighter aircraft. Although the AAS was not
needed for a real world emergency, several test engagements were

As the F-16 Falcons arrived, the 86th Air Mobility Squadron had already
completed the logistics of “setting up camp,” said Colonel Wessberg.
The 86th AMS troops were busy receiving aircraft with forklifts to
unload cargo and move pallets. At the same time, the 786th Security
Forces Squadron patrolled and secured the area, he said.

On the exercise island, Sao Vicente, the 1st Combat Communications
Squadron provided voice and data communications, said Tech. Sgt. Peter
Christ, NCO in charge of the Integrated Communications Element.  

The 10-person 1st CBCS team established connectivity between the
international Special Forces teams as well as two battleships that were
anchored at sea, he said. The Ramstein-based team had communications up
and running within the first 30 minutes of their arrival. After the
initial communications were set up, the team manned the radios, passed
command and control information and assisted the signal corps in system