It was an honor and pleasure for NEC-SE to be part of the overall Ravens Challange ASEAN 2018 instructional teams running the multiple training lanes during week two.
Among the many Thai commanders present for the four-week program this year were Police LT. General Tinnapat Phummarin, Commissioner, Office of Logistics, Colonel Weeraphorn Soonsatorn, Deputy Commander Army ANOTHAI, Police Special Colonel Kamthorn Auicharoen, long time commander of Police Special Operations Unit 191 (EOD) and now Deputy Commander of Unit 191 Special Operations Division. The director of the Ravens Challenge program, Mr. Al Johnson stated “NEC-SE supports Ravens Challenge goals by bringing information from the Iraq and Syria battlefields to the participating commanders and technicians form Thailand and SE Asia at Ravens Challenge. Sharing the knowledge and lessons learned from the impact of IEDs and other methods on communities in the Middle East has resonance and relevance here in Thailand and Southeast Asia as well. This allows a more holistic approach to identifying and reduction of capability gaps in the broad spectrum of responses to terrorism and insurgencies that use asymmetric attacks against vulnerable populations.”
In this capacity, NEC-SE shares information with all the instructional teams running the various training lanes at Ravens Challange. One of the three-man instructional teams which supported this year’s Ravens Challange was the three-person team from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Response and Defeat Operations Support (REDOPS). The talented three-person REDOPS squad was lead by MS. Byung Hee Kim, the program manager for the REDOPS , Mr. Jeff David, the founder and Vice President of DAGER Technology, LLC, and Mr. Tony Hammerquist, technical advisor.
(REDOPS), lane training was integral to the success of the overall Ravens Challange ASEAN 2018 culmination exercise where there tools and methods were used to disarm multiple IED’s used in the final exercise.
REDOPS is an integrated program established to develop safer and more effective countermeasures for bomb squads. REDOPS’ three-pronged approach combines assessing emerging technologies, expanding robotic capabilities, and upgrading existing tools and protective systems (e.g., exploring the integration of self-contained breathing apparatuses into bomb suits). REDOPS draws on expertise from all levels and regions of the improvised explosive device (IED) response community.
MS. Byung Hee Kim is the program manager for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) REDOPS which supports public safety bomb squads and the Research and Prototyping for Tactical Operations (RAPTOR) that support the tactical community. These programs provide state and local bomb squads and tactical teams with solutions to effectively and safely conduct their mission. As the Program Manager for REDOPS and RAPTOR, Ms. Kim works closely with the FBI’s Counter IED Unit, National Tactical Officers Association (NTOA), National Bomb Squad Commanders Advisory Board (NBSCAB), International partners, and various state and local agencies to identify, test, and transition technology/capability solutions to users.
Supporting her was Mr. Jeff David, the founder and Vice President of DAGER Technology, LLC. Mr. David efforts focus on countering improvised explosive devices and combating terrorism. Jeff leads planning and execution of the Bomb Squad Test Bed and micro R&D program in the help of DHS Science and Technology and the FBI. Previously, Mr. David was the Deputy Director of the Combating Terrorism Technical Support Office where he oversaw execution of the Interagency Technical Support Working Group and other related programs. He is the author of more than 30 Bomb Squad Test reports, two Detonator articles, and three FBI Special Technicians Bulletins.
Tony Hammerquist is the third member of this incredible team. Mr. Hammerquist brings 25 years’ experience as a bomb disposal technician with 14 years concentrating on weapons of mass destruction and electronic countermeasures. He has worked as an FBI adjunct instructor at the Hazardous Devices School on electronic countermeasures theory and operations. Tony has led planning and conduct of the Bomb Squad Test Bed X-ray pulse controller and Robotic X-ray Systems assessments and has
written numerous test bed reports and other special project reports. He is currently serving as Director for the National Capital Chapter of the International Association of Bomb Technicians and Investigators (IABTI).
NEC-SE looks forward to working with the various instructional teams from around the world in the near future, to include future collaborations with Department of Homeland Security (DHS) REDOPS command team in support of our mutual aims to counter and find a resolution to the problem of global terrorism.