Ukraine’s Defense Ministry Holds Training of Civil-Military Cooperation Officers
Every month, around 40 service personnel take special classes to become civil-military cooperation officers within Ukraine's Defense Ministry. Their main task is to communicate with civilians along the front line
“I tried to shoot about five years ago. But since this is just an educational facility, we usually shoot just a couple of times a month from the Makarov pistol and the Kalashnikov,” Chertova said.
Chertova is a morale officer. She became a kindergarten teacher after graduation but later decided to move from the classroom to the military. Chertova is convinced that her original training will give her an advantage at her job in the army, which is to establish cooperation between the military and civilian populations.
” I think that all people want peace. Wherever they are, people are suffering through no fault of their own. You know about the information warfare happening now, so our duties include conveying truth to them,” Chertova said.
In addition to establishing community dialogue, the officers must be able to handle weapons.
They learn to work with anti-tank grenade launchers and AK-47s.
Anatoliy Mozhovyi is also finishing the training. He already has significant combat experience. He was a peacekeeper in Kosovo and fought on the front line in Donbas. He said that the peacekeeping mission gave him his first experience in working with civilians.
“You can’t accomplish anything without a dialogue. If we keep using power for pressure, showing how great we are, that we’re the strongest army in Europe, storm and carry out clearance operations, it would be stupid. Especially considering that it’s our land,” Mozhovyi said.
The training for officers of civil-military cooperation lasts two weeks. The lectures are held by experienced servicepeople and representatives of the International Committee of the Red Cross. One class features up to 40 people. After the end of the training, the officers take tests and undergo a psychological examination.
“The officers are now undergoing weapons training. Then they will have special tactical training and tactical medicine – everything they will need in the Joint Forces Operation zone. We have psychologists who determine if the person can take part in the Joint Forces Operation,” Andriy Korabelskyi, the Deputy Head of Military-Civilian Cooperation at the Department of the Armed Forces of Ukraine said.
After the training, the officers will be sent to the front line for three-to-six months