Navy officers brings own experiences to RIMPAC security symposium

This article has photo gallery Published on FLTLT Sean Donnelly (author), Petty Officer 1st Class Ace Rhea (photographer), LSIS Kayla Hayes (photographer)

Location(s): Honolulu, Hawaii

Topic(s): Humanitarian and Disaster Relief (HADR), Exercise RIMPAC, Operation FIJI ASSIST

Lieutenant Commander Jaqueline Swinton, RAN, is the lead Australian Legal Officer for Exercise Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) 2016. (photo: ABIS Kayla Hayes)
Lieutenant Commander Jaqueline Swinton, RAN, is the lead Australian Legal Officer for Exercise Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) 2016.

Experiences from the major humanitarian and disaster relief (HADR) effort in Fiji have formed the basis for a keynote address on Women, Peace and Security from Navy officer Lieutenant Commander Jacqueline Swinton.

Lieutenant Commander Swinton participated on the panel for the RIMPAC Maritime Security Symposium with Vice Admiral Nora Tyson, Officer Commanding RIMPAC and Commander of the US 3rd Fleet.

The Navy legal officer spoke at length with multi-national partners at RIMPAC, the world’s largest maritime exercise, as part of a forum that explored the United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325 agenda and its application for inclusive security in the full range of military operations.

“I was privileged to share with my RIMPAC coalition partners, the means and methods the ADF is using to operationalise UNSCR 1325 in operations and exercises and being able to provide recent examples from my time in the field,” Lieutenant Commander Swinton said.

Lieutenant Commander Swinton was among the first contingent deployed to Operation FIJI ASSIST after the devastating impact of Cyclone Winston in March 2016 and shared her experiences of being an ADF Gender advisor.

“During FIJI ASSIST, I was an integral part of the Joint Task Force Headquarters and was able to advise the Commander on the consideration of Women, Peace and Security in both the planning and conduct of the Operation for greater operational effectiveness.”

Australia recently included the Women, Peace and Security agenda in US/AUS bilateral exercise TALISMAN SABRE 2015, where aspects of the resolution were fully integrated into the combined context.

“Australia has found it highly beneficial to employ specialists to focus on advising gender perspectives in operations, and our Gender Advisors, Commanders and operational teams all derive great benefit from the valuable practical experience gained and relationships built during military exercises.”

Lieutenant Commander Swinton is among 1650 Australian personnel deployed on Exercise RIMPAC where she is the Judge Advocate General for the Maritime Forces Component Commander, Commodore Mal Wise, and leads a team of military lawyers from the United States, Canada and Chile.

RIMPAC is a multinational activity held from 28 June to 3 August 2016 and is the world’s largest maritime exercise with more than 25,000 personnel from 26 countries.

The exercise seeks to enhance interoperability between Pacific Rim armed forces, ostensibly as a means of promoting stability in the region to the benefit of all participating nations. The exercise helps participants foster and sustain the cooperative relationships that are critical to ensuring the safety of sea lanes and security on the world’s oceans.