NATO Starts Dynamic Mongoose 2015 Anti-Submarine Exercise

In the first week of May 2015, NATO began its Anti-Submarine Warfare Exercise dubbed DYNAMIC MONGOOSE 2015 (DMON 15).

The purpose of the exercise is to simulate attacks and detect enemy subs in unfriendly waters. The terrain they are using to test it on includes rugged yet shallow underwater canyons, rapid currents, and abnormally loud sound pollution from freshwater pouring in from Norway's fjords.

They hope to challenge them with complex warfare training, and improve their anti-sub skills. Their main emphasis is safety of all participants. For this drill, submarines from many countries, including Germany, Norway, Sweden and the United States, under operational control of NATO Submarine Command (COMSUBNATO), will team up with surface ships from Canada, Germany, France, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Spain, Turkey, the United Kingdom, and the United States under the command of Standing NATO Maritime Group TWO (SNMG-2) Rear Admiral Brad Williamson.

The testing has not sat well with Russia, whose relations with many of these countries has been less than friendly. Russia annexed Ukraine last year, which increased tensions in international relations. Officials are denying that the location of their training is meant to send a message to other countries.

“Obviously, we’re aware of the incidents that have happened in some of our partner nations’ waters,” said Rear Adm. Brad Williamson, who commands the Standing NATO Maritime Group 2 ships participating in the exercise. “I think for us what it does is it focuses our efforts and our training here. Russia has a right to be at sea, just as we do, but the incidents we have seen are not in line with international regulations…and that's been the cause of concern."

Russian aircraft have also been seen in Nordic and Baltic restricted airspace, challenging their air defense and forcing allied forces to respond to them.

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