Brilliant Jump 2016: NATO’s Alert Exercise Programme Commences in Earnest
1 Apr 2016
the Netherlands- "As
a result of progressing crisis in Europe, NATO Response Forces are being
alerted to the state of their highest readiness; immediately, the Very High
Readiness Joint Task Force, currently residing in Spain, receives an order to
prepare for possible deployment…”. This is the scenario baseline for the exercise that starts today across
numerous NATO Headquarters in Europe: Brilliant Jump 2016 phase I - Alertex.
Brilliant Jump – Alertex (alert exercise) is the first
in a series of four exercises (the others being Trident Joust, Brilliant Jump
phase II – Deployex, Brilliant Capability) designed to prove the concept of
NATO’s Readiness Action Plan (RAP) and concomitantly put to test all its core
elements, including the NATO Command Structure (NCS) and a number of
Headquarters throughout Europe.
The exercise is scheduled to take place during the
period 1–10 April 2016 within the concerned headquarters and commands, testing
the procedures employed to activate the NATO Response Force (NRF) and taking it
to the stage where NATO forces relocate from their permanent bases to the designated
ports and airports of embarkation.
those participating in the exercise are: Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers
Europe (Belgium), Allied Joint Force Command Brunssum (Netherlands), NATO Rapid
Deployable Corps (Spain), the Very High Readiness Joint Task Force (multiple
locations), Multinational Corps North-East (Poland), NATO Force Integration
Unit (Poland) and numerous military Headquarters and units within Spain,
Poland, the United Kingdom and Albania.
The Very High Readiness Joint Task Force (VJTF) is composed of a land brigade
supported by air, sea and Special Forces and is capable of deploying at very
short notice when the sovereignty of any member of the Alliance is under
threat. The VJTF is established on a rotational basis and during this first
year it will be led by Spain. The main purpose of this Alert exercise is to
test the activation of this force from the moment following the decision of
Supreme Allied Commander Europe (SACEUR) to activate, until the ‘Spearhead’ forces
are ready to be deployed.
The unit at the core of VJTF throughout 2016 is the 7th Light Infantry Brigade
"Galicia” (BRILAT by its Spanish acronym). BRILAT attained certification in
mid-2015 during an exercise dubbed "Spearhead”, which is the purpose of VJTF:
to be the vanguard, the first to arrive. If the crisis escalates and more
troops are needed, two other land brigades would be deployed to provide rapid
Throughout 2016 the Spanish Brigade BRILAT is subordinated to the NATO Rapid
Deployable Corps, Spain (NRDC-ESP), whose Headquarters - based in Bétera
(Valencia) - was certified to undertake this task during exercise "Trident
Juncture 2015”, which took place in Zaragoza last autumn, having proven itself
compliant with all the evaluation criteria demanded by the Alliance to command
the land forces of the new NATO Response Force.