Strengthening the Partnership
Improving Military Coordination with Relief Agencies and Allies in Humanitarian Operations
Many humanitarian interventions led and supported by the United States go beyond simple disaster relief and include such difficult tasks as protecting refugees, securing humanitarian aid, and restoring civil order. The U.S. Air Force often plays an important role in such complex contingency operations. This book explores how the military might improve coordination with relief agencies and with European allies in such operations. It examines the dynamics of complex contingency operations, provides an overview of the relief community, delineates barriers to better cooperation, discusses the European contribution, and recommends steps the military might take to improve coordination in future crises. Steps include improving military familiarization with key relief organizations, perhaps appointing a humanitarian advisor, establishing more centers of excellence, and bringing relief organizations into the planning process. The military should encourage information sharing with relief organizations, improve procedures for managing the flow of aid, and leverage European capabilities.