The United States Military Operations

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The United States Military continues to prepare sailors and soldiers for a range of military operations. While the military is largely known for fighting and winning the nation’s wars, it is not uncommon for military commanders to face challenges outside that of military combat operations. One of the more challenging operations that Joint Force Commanders face, is that of responding to natural disasters.
While military commanders may conduct exercises both in the United States and with our coalition partners and allies, natural disasters that require a military response have unique challenges that are difficult to prepare and to practice. Natural disasters often occur with little or no warning and have the potential to impact large
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There are however, several restrictions that prevent the military from being able to directly respond to foreign or natural disasters inside the U.S borders. A formal request for aid must be generated through the Department of State for foreign aid (JP3-29, 2014). Likewise, a request for federal assistance must be made from the state to the President prior to military forces are authorized to respond to a domestic natural disaster. Unlike the Armed National Guard that is run by the state and falls under US Title 32 laws, the Department of Defense operates under Title 10 laws that prevent the military from operating in inside the United States borders for defensive support of civil authorities without the explicit permission from the Secretary of Defense (JP3-28, 2013). Joint Task Force commanders can best prepare for the surprise of natural disasters with routine training and interoperability with coalition partners. Regular multinational exercises and operations improve the trust and working relationship with foreign governments that are essential in the time of crisis. Trust between nations is required to allow a country to make the initial request for assistance. At the time of the 2004 Sumatra earthquake, only 15 percent of Indonesians had a favorable
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