Search

 

Cablegate: The Tsd Ha/Dr Official Meeting in Canberra

VZCZCXRO4378
PP RUEHPT
DE RUEHBY #1269/01 3470527
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 120527Z DEC 08
FM AMEMBASSY CANBERRA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 0677
INFO RUEHKO/AMEMBASSY TOKYO PRIORITY 3326
RUEHBN/AMCONSUL MELBOURNE PRIORITY 5837
RUEHPT/AMCONSUL PERTH PRIORITY 4107
RUEHDN/AMCONSUL SYDNEY PRIORITY 4045
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHINGTON DC PRIORITY
RHHMUNA/CDR USPACOM HONOLULU HI PRIORITY

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 03 CANBERRA 001269

SIPDIS

PACOM FOR CENTER OF EXCELLENCE, DEPARTMENT FOR EAP/ANP AND
EAP/RSP

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL EAID MARR MOPS ASEAN ARF JA AS
SUBJECT: THE TSD HA/DR OFFICIAL MEETING IN CANBERRA

1. (SBU) SUMMARY: The Japanese delegation, the American
delegation and Australian hosts agreed upon a set of
Australian written guidelines for the Trilateral Security
Dialog's work in Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster
Response (HA/DR), but the task of the coming year will be the
editing and acceptance of the supplement to that draft
containing more specific follow-through actions pursuant to
the guidelines. All participants agreed that efforts at the
trilateral level should be complementary with the efforts of
the individual nations and be coordinated with other
international, regional, and NGO actors in HA/DR. The
Australians will chair the next year's efforts. End SUMMARY

2 (SBU) The one day December 2, 2008 meeting, the first
Trilateral Security Dialog (TSD) meeting on Humanitarian
Assistance/Disaster Response (HA/DR) cooperation, was
augmented by a roundtable held at the newly formed Asia
Pacific Civil-Military Centre for Excellence in Queanbeyan on
December 3, 2008.

3. (SBU) Participants:

Australian Delegation

--Jennifer Rawson: First Assistant Secretary, International
Security Division (Head of Delegation)
--John Quinn: Assistant Secretary, Strategic Issues and
Intelligence Branch (Co-chair of Delegation)
--Cameron Archer: Director, Defence and Strategic Policy,
International Security Division Department of Foreign Affairs
and Trade
--Alistair Sherwin, Assistant Secretary, Humanitarian and
Middle East Branch, AusAID
--Shireen Sandhu, AusAID
--Gary Dunbar, AusAID
--Karl Kent, Assistant Secretary, Capability and
Coordination, Emergency Management Australia (EMA)
--Rajan Venkataraman, Senior Advisor, Office of National
Security, Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet (PM&C)
--Robert McGregor and WGCDR Antony Martin from International
Policy Division and Headquarters Joint Operations Command,
Department of Defence
-- Michael G. Smith: Guest speaker, Executive Director Asia
Pacific Civil-Military Centre for Excellence

Japanese Delegation

--Kiminori Iwama: Director, Oceania Division, Asian and
Oceania Affairs Bureau, Ministry of Foreign Affairs
(Head of Delegation)
--Takashi Koizumi: Director, Overseas Disaster Assistance
Division, International Cooperation Bureau, Ministry of
Foreign Affairs
--Toshihide Ando: Counselor, Embassy of Japan in Canberra
--Nobuharu Imanishi: First Secretary, Embassy of Japan Also
at Centre meeting
--Naoki Semmyo: Second Secretary, Embassy of Japan

U.S.Delegation

--James Fleming: Director of Operations and Logistics,
USAID/OFDA (Head of Delegation)
--Bill Berger: USAID/OFDA's Acting Principal Regional Advisor
in Bangkok
--Alcy Frelick: Director of the Office of Australia, New
Zealand, and Pacific Affairs
--Joseph Bosco: OSD Policy's Advisor on HA/DR
--Jeff Hensel: USAID/OFDA representative at PACOM
--Scott Weidie: PACOM
--Tom Dolan: HA/DR Advisor, Center for Excellence in Disaster
management and Humanitarian Assistance, PACOM
--Kevin Sheives, EAP's Office of Regional Security Policy
--David Atkinson, Embassy Canberra Disaster Relief Official
--Virgil Strohmeyer, Embassy Canberra Political Officer

4. (SBU) Kiminori Iwama identified the key issues that Japan
considered to be especially novel and important.
--The whole-of-government approach is new to the Japanese,
Q--The whole-of-government approach is new to the Japanese,
and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA) itself has
many competing sections dealing with HA/DR. There must be
internal discussions concerning the best way forward
toward the coordination of individual agency and
institutional efforts.
--Japanese specific legal constraints hamper the

CANBERRA 00001269 002 OF 003


implementation of the approach, especially in the case of the
military.
--Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) is already a prime focus of
the Japanese Center in Kobe and is of special interest to
Japanese actors.
--There must be a clearing house for information that
summarizes and synergizes the lessons learned from past and
future disaster events.

5. (SBU) USAID/OFDA's James Fleming emphasized that there was
overwhelming agreement among the three countries
because of a common spirit of cooperation based on shared
values. This commonality allowed an appealing informality
of discussion. The TSD meeting outcomes included willingness
for increased cooperation, a greater understanding of
national goals, and a general comfort with the agreed
guidelines.

6. (SBU) DFAT's John Quinn concluded for the Australians
emphasizing the importance of basic like-mindedness, which
allowed much learning from the diversity of national
approaches. He felt that there was a real value to the
agreement to join the dots of what exists rather than to
invent another layer of bureaucracy to the many that already
overlay the workers in the field. Although differences and
limitations of individual nations must be respected,
streamlining documentation and creating a checklist would add
to the prudence of policy makers, who would benefit from the
production of a working manual open to editing by all the
participants. He also wanted to connect with UN
organizations and NGOs more effectively, with the TSD
partners raising a common profile in political venues.
Lastly, all the national centers of excellence should become
interlocutors, especially on the issues of developing DRR
principles and techniques.

7. (SBU) Jennifer Rawson provided the Australian summary of
the entire meeting and their intended working points for
the coming year:
-- There was general agreement on the proposed guidelines
that described the working principles for the group--
especially the importance of hazard reduction.
-- All participants should consider the draft supplement to
the guidelines, which attempted to elaborate their
practical implications, as a checklist and a work-in-progress
that is not meant to be legally binding.
It should come to include the particular issues that are
available for cooperation given legal and national
restrictions.
-- This first meeting has commenced the work of creating a
program for the future based upon lessons learned from the
three recent disasters in the region: Tsunami, Sichuan
earthquake and Burmese cyclone, and of emphasizing how a
TSDapproach might have produced more favorable outcomes. This
would be the first step in creating a handbook/manual
from a survey of national decisions made during these efforts.
-- All participants must explore how they can work more
effectively together with other organizations-especially
UNOCHA, ARF, and APEC.
-- The TSD should caucus together in different regional
organizations presenting a common front of concerted action.
-- The Australian group chairing the work during this year
will focus their inter-sessional activities on gathering a
contact list and working with the participants' embassies to
produce an acceptable draft supplement.

8. (SBU) A further smaller roundtable held Dec 3 at the new
Queanbeyan Asia Pacific Civil-Military Centre for Excellence
QQueanbeyan Asia Pacific Civil-Military Centre for Excellence
put forward more targeted proposals that aim to increase
coordination during training and preparation for HA/DR
operations, and resulted in a fruitful discussion on how to
better integrate various approaches defined by the three
Centers of Excellence now operating in the Hawaii, Kobe, and
Queanbeyan.

9. (SBU) Roundtable participants:

Australian:

From Asia Pacific Civil-Military Centre of Excellence:
--Alison Chartres: Chief of Staff
--Colonel Neil Greet: Military Affairs Advisor
--Dr. Moreen Dee: Executive Officer
--Randy Knispel: Training and Website Development and Support

CANBERRA 00001269 003 OF 003


--Greg Takats: AusAID secondee (Research and Lessons Learned)
--Superintendent Nigel Phair: Australian Federal Police
secondee (Education, training and doctrine Development)

--Cameron Archer from DFAT
--Nicholas Charpentier from DFAT
--Sue Edgecombe: AusAID Liaison Officer to the ADF
--Thanh Le: AusAID Manager-Emergency Services
--Nick Keam: Australian Federal Police, Peace Operations and
Doctrine, International Deployment Group

US:

--Tom Dolan
--Scott Weidie
--David Atkinson
--Virgil Strohmeyer

Japan:

--Nobuharu Imanishi: First Secretary, Embassy of Japan

10. (SBU) The December 3 roundtable identified a number of
action possibilities, including:
--PACOM's Scott Weidie suggested that national centers of
excellence organize a workshop in advance of the Tempest
Express Exercise with PACOM. This would be best done two
years in future with the exercise centered in Japan
(provisional)
--All agreed that the whole-of-government approach has to
take in the professions--legal, medical, security,
engineering and teaching--besides government bureaucracies.
Civil and military government must manage enthusiasm.
--The TSD's roles must be complementary-combining effectively
the efforts of international actors and the NGOs and
governments of all three nations. The military role is at the
peak of disaster--police replacing them during clean up and
reconstruction. Teachers, engineers and medical personnel
have a place in the risk reduction phase as well as in the
post disaster phase-for disasters are reduced using lessons
learned and then applied to the preparatory phase of future
events.
--Many agreed that next rotation of the TSD working group
after Australia should be to Japan, where whole-of-government
issues and defense force participation could be tackled. The
American rotation could be one of implementation of the
agreed upon framework.
--Informal reviews after each disaster effort should be
shared among the centers.
--The centers could develop an outline of civil/military
triggers.
--The centers should also analyze present stockpiles for
their best use and coordination among the three nations using
various scenarios, informed by past events and the
prognostications of the best science.

11. (SBU) COMMENT: All parties agreed both meetings were very
useful and identified concrete actions to follow up.
How the Australian Center will be stitched together and
operate with a number of differing agencies, all with
differing roles in the broad spectrum of HA/DR operations,
remains to be seen.

MCCALLUM

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Werewolf: Gordon Campbell On North Korea, Neo-Nazism, And Milo

With a bit of luck the planet won’t be devastated by nuclear war in the next few days. US President Donald Trump will have begun to fixate on some other way to gratify his self-esteem – maybe by invading Venezuela or starting a war with Iran. More>>

Victory Declared: New Stabilisation Funding From NZ As Mosul Is Retaken

New Zealand has congratulated the Iraqi government on the successful liberation of Mosul from ISIS after a long and hard-fought campaign. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Current US Moves Against North Korea

If Martians visited early last week, they’d probably be scratching their heads as to why North Korea was being treated as a potential trigger for global conflict... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Lessons From Corbyn’s Campaign

Leaving partisan politics aside – and ignoring Jeremy Corbyn’s sensational election campaign for a moment – it has to be said that Britain is now really up shit creek... More>>

ALSO:

Another US Court: Fourth Circuit Rules Muslim Ban Discriminatory

ACLU: Step by step, point by point, the court laid out what has been clear from the start: The president promised to ban Muslims from the United States, and his executive orders are an attempt to do just that. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 
 
  • Pacific.Scoop
  • Cafe Pacific
  • PMC