In Oksbøl, the large Exercise Dynamic Front 23 has begun in earnest. Here, Denmark and allies train in the joint deployment of various fire support systems. American HIMARS rocket launchers, frigates and several different types of artillery take part in the exercise. Over the past week, over 500 foreign soldiers and their equipment have arrived at the Oksbøl barracks and training grounds from 8 different countries – and these days the American-led exercise Dynamic Front, which is the largest artillery exercise on Danish soil in 30 years is underway.
The American rocket artillery system HIMARS fires rockets, heavy mortars from Denmark and howitzers from France, Poland and the USA fire heavy rounds, American F-16 fighter jets provide fire support from the air and ships from NATO’s standing naval forces provide fire support from the sea. An important part of the exercise is that the artillery units train in the communication standard ASCA. Artillery Systems Cooperation Activities (ASCA) is a software standard that ensures one continuous line of communication that connects so-called artillery command and control systems to each other.
Dynamic Front does not only take place in Denmark. At the same time as the sharpshooting in Oksbøl, there are also activities in Grafenwöhr in Germany. It is the American 56th Artillery Command that is responsible for the overall control of the Dynamic Front. The part of the exercise that takes place in Denmark is led by the headquarters of the Allied Rapid Reaction Corps (ARRC), which is based in Great Britain on a daily basis. The Danish exercise participants come primarily from the 1st Artillery Division, which is one of the units under the 1st Brigade. Over 500 soldiers from over ten different countries have come to Oksbøl in connection with Dynamic Front.
In addition to the actual artillery exercise, it is also an important task to practice the role of host nation for allied forces. In a crisis or war situation, allied forces will probably have to pass through Denmark on their way to the operational area. It is the Army that coordinates the efforts to make the foreign units’ stay in Denmark function under Dynamic Front, while the Defense Command, the Home Guard, the Air Command, the Ministry of Defence’s Property Agency, the Ministry of Defence’s Materiel and Procurement Agency, the Police, the Ministry of Transport and Varde municipality also contribute to the task.