Brunssum, The Netherlands – On Tuesday 31 May, Commander Allied Maritime Command (COM MARCOM), Vice Admiral Keith Blount, Royal Navy, visited Allied Joint Force Command Brunssum (JFCBS).
Based in Northwood, United Kingdom, MARCOM is the primary headquarters responsible for maritime forces assigned to NATO. These forces typically come under one of two groups of Frigates and Destroyers known as Standing NATO Maritime Groups (SNMG 1 & 2) – or Mine Countermeasures groups known as Standing NATO Mine Countermeasures Groups (SNMCMG 1 & 2). Half of this force is usually located in Northern Europe, so close coordination is required with HQ JFCBS, the Operational Commander for the Northern European region.
The main purpose of the Admiral's visit was exchange views on the planning that has taken place in response to Russia's war in Ukraine. As a defensive organisation, when the global situation changes, NATO's plans must adapt to ensure the Alliance retains a credible defensive posture. The Maritime Domain is an important consideration within that planning process, and MARCOM's maritime expertise is essential to ensuring NATO can fully protect its people and territory.
As one of NATO's most senior British Admirals, VAdm Blount also took the chance to meet fellow countrymen from the Royal Navy employed at JFCBS. Over coffee in the UK National Support Element, British naval officers and sailors had the opportunity to discuss the challenges and opportunities of life in a NATO Command.