The Art of Strategic Leadership: United Nations Staff Officer Course in Hanoi

On the 13th of May, Hanoi played host to a significant event in the realm of international peacekeeping. The Vietnam Peacekeeping Department, under the auspices of the Ministry of National Defense and with the invaluable support of the Global Peace Operations Initiative Program of the United States, proudly inaugurated the United Nations Staff Officer Training Course. This marked a pivotal moment in our collective pursuit of global peace and stability.

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The upcoming training course, scheduled from May 13-29, aims to empower officers with essential knowledge and specialized skills pertaining to United Nations military advisory work at the Mission Command level.

The participants encompass officers poised to embark on peacekeeping missions as United Nations advisory officers, as well as those engaged in fields associated with United Nations peacekeeping advisory work.

(Image source: VOV)

Throughout the course, attendees will gain insights into the fundamental aspects of the United Nations and its peacekeeping endeavors, encompassing topics such as the environment of peacekeeping operations, the organizational framework of missions, advisory agencies, and the legal underpinnings and guidelines steering mission operations, including rules on the use of force and international humanitarian law.

Additionally, they will delve into the principles of United Nations peacekeeping operations, command and control mechanisms, combat advisory, civilian protection, humanitarian assistance, media relations, disarmament, and community reintegration. The curriculum also covers vital subjects like intelligence gathering and analysis, military-civilian coordination, and the crucial functions and tasks of advisory agencies within the Mission Command, along with their coordination mechanisms.

Furthermore, through realistic simulation scenarios, participants will apply their knowledge in practical exercises on map skills, mission analysis and evaluation, combat plan development, and the drafting and issuance of combat orders. They will also enhance their abilities in synergistic coordination during advisory tasks at the Mission Command level.

Colonel Nguyen Nhu Canh, Deputy Director of the Vietnam Peacekeeping Department, highlighted the diverse backgrounds of the course participants, including both domestic and international students. The international cohort comprises individuals from partner countries of the GPOI Program, while the Vietnamese participants represent various units and forces, such as the Vietnam People’s Navy, Air Defense – Air Force, Ministry of Commander of Cyberspace Operations, Border Guard Command, Coast Guard Command, and Special Forces Command.

Canh emphasized the course’s contribution to enhancing Vietnam’s capacity to conduct international intensive training programs and developing a competent team of lecturers on UN peacekeeping. He also underscored its role in fostering amicable relations and cooperation between Vietnam, the United States, and other international partners in the realm of peacekeeping endeavors.

Lee Seck Weng, who leads the GPOI Lecturer Team, commended Vietnam’s significant progress in contributing to the United Nations peacekeeping mission through the deployment of military personnel since 2014. He acknowledged the far-reaching impact of the Vietnamese peacekeeping forces, not only in their homeland but also in inspiring others to embrace the noble cause of maintaining peace in regions afflicted by conflict.

Fanasy Nguyen Le