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Cablegate: Post's Response to Lessons Learned - Crisis

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

090740Z Jun 05




E.O. 12958: N/A


1. Post appreciated the opportunity to host a crisis
management exercise (CME). Post feels that it learned
valuable lessons during this exercise and was also able to
reflect on its own crisis preparedness. Post has also taken
time to consider the questions posed by the CME team in
REFTEL and has provided responses to each query.

2. Post appreciates the opportunity to provide feedback
regarding the CME.

A. Format of the CME: What recommendations would you make
regarding the form and the conduct of the exercise?: Were
four hours sufficient to meet your objectives?: Post feels
that four hours was a sufficient amount of time allotted for
the exercise. During this time Post was able to make
conscience, concerted decisions and spend an adequate amount
of time on each crisis module.

B. Selection of scenarios: Please comment on the scenarios
played during the exercise. Which scenarios were most
valuable? Should some be dropped? Were there
additional/other crises you would like presented?: Although,
Post feels that the scenarios chosen were accurate for the
conditions in Bangladesh, they could have been better
organized in a manner to build upon each other in a more
logical procession. Several times Post took actions that
were in sync with the crisis at hand but those decisions then
negated the next crisis scenario and made it functionally
obsolete. All the scenarios provided some value, but once
again the more logical procession of events would have better
served Post in the learning process. Post would like to
suggest a more role-playing basis for the CME. This process
would allow for better control of the exercise and the
training would follow a more logical path. During this type
of setting Post would have to make decisions that would drive
the next stage of the roles and if those decisions were made
improperly, a more severe situation may arise. Post feels
that this process would better serve us in addressing our
proficiencies and deficiencies in our planning process.

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C. How appropriate was the kind and amount of intervention by
the controller in the exercise? What about the controller's
observations for post management from the exercise?: Post
feels that the controller's intervention was sufficient. The
controllers allowed the EAC to make its own decisions and
discuss our options without constant direction from the
controller. This allowed Post to better assess its own
preparedness and address any deficiencies. Overall the
controllers had nothing but praise for Post's decisions
during the CME and made only minor suggestions on other
options Post might have considered. The controllers left
stating they were exceptionally pleased with Post's
preparedness and could tell that Post had done some training
on its own to ready itself for crises.

D. What would the post do differently in response to a real
crisis as a result of the training? Post feels that overall
it would not make any major changes to its current process.
Post feels that it is adequately prepared and the feedback
from the CME controllers reflected the same.

E. What lessons did post take from the CME? What best
practices for crisis management emerged? What changes, if
any, have you made in your EAP procedures as a result of the
exercise? Have you formulated an action plan to deal with
issues that arose during the CME?: Post took away several
lessons from this exercise that will make our process more
efficient and effective in dealing with different crises. As
a result, Post has taken action to include the Warden
information at the Alternate Command Centers, to make sure
all employees are aware of and understand why a F-77 form is
used, and that the CERT/First Responders list is cross
checked with Post's Drawdown list to assure sufficient
coverage if needed during minimal staff. As a result of this
exercise the EAC is now aware that the President of the local
government takes over control of the military during a
caretaker government and that a simple addition of red and
green flags may be a viable idea for use after a natural
disaster has occurred. Currently Post has not addressed any
changes to its EAP as a result of the exercise. Post feels
comfortable with its EAP and feels that the exercise only
strengthened its belief that we are on the right course of
action should a need arise to confront a crisis. Post, also
doesn,t feel that many issues rose out of the exercise that
would need us to reassess our EAP. During the exercise all
those involved had a clear understanding of their respective
roles and the EAC was also able to quickly address any
differences and formulate a plan of action. Post feels this
reflects positively on its preparedness to deal with any
crisis that may arise.

F. What aspects of stand-alone CMT Overview Training did
post find useful? How could it be improved? Would post have
preferred a lengthier stand-alone session, including an
exercise more closely resembling the CME that was presented
for the EAC? Does post plan any follow-up to the
fundamentals training, for LES or non-EAC Americans?: Post
plans to conduct periodic training for all its employees, as
it has already done in the past. Post feels that by
continuing to build on the crisis management foundation
already in place we can only become more efficient and
productive by continuing with in house training exercises.
Post feels that the time provided for the stand-alone session
was sufficient and the small exercise given during this
portion of the training sufficiently addressed the group that
was assembled.

G. Frequency of CME: We would appreciate your candid comments
on the optimal frequency of CMEs. What would be best )
maintain current schedule (once every two years) offer more
frequently (specify, for example, once every one and one-half
years), or offer less frequently (specify). Secondly, should
all posts have an equal opportunity to have CMEs with the
same frequency or should the level of threat to post guide us
in scheduling their frequency?: Post believes that with its
current training schedule for in-house training a simple
change to every 18 months would be sufficient. This would
allow for coverage during change over of personnel and would
also provide for an overlap of training for those still at
post. Post believes that all Posts should get the
opportunity to benefit from the CME training but that
frequency should be based on the threat level and potential
for a natural disaster at each location.

H. Any other comments on the CME or Crisis Management
Training offered at FSI would be appreciated.


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