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GSOF 2021: SOF Commanders Line Up

Several Important Keynote Addresses Examine Topical Issues

The Global Special Operations Forces (GSOF) symposium gets under way in Warsaw, Poland, today, with a line-up of top-level VIP speakers from the global SOF community and military, government, academic and industry organisations.

The symposium will cover a range of topics affecting the SOF community, including collective defence in Eastern Europe, warfare trends, developments and forecasts, human risk and performance, artificial intelligence, regional intelligence sharing, financial support and procurement, and SOF recruitment and retention.

The agenda features a number of senior leader keynotes and panel discussions. Today, this will include a discussion of ‘Prospects for a Central European Regional SOF Headquarters’ from MajGen David Tabor, Commander, Special Operations Command Europe; MajGen Tamás Sándor, Commander, Special Operations Forces, Hungary; BrigGen Branislav Benka, SOF Commander, Slovakia; and Maj Matija Jazbec, SOF Commander, Slovenia.

This will be followed in the afternoon by the Senior Leader Address from Vice Admiral Timothy Szymanski, Deputy Commander, US Special Operations Command (USSOCOM).

Day two will begin with an SOF Commanders’ Roundtable session, followed by a Senior Leader Conversation from Dr Jacek Bartosiak, CEO and Founder of Strategy & Future, The Future of Central European Defence and Security; and MajGen Dr Piotr A. Bɫazeusz, Deputy Chief of General Staff, Polish Armed Forces. The afternoon Senior Leader Moderated Panel will discuss ‘Prospects for Regional Intelligence Centers’, with insights from William Fleser, Former Deputy Director of the J3-International Division of USSOCOM; Alex Dunmire, Senior Director of Analytic Programs, Maxar; Cdr Deivydas, Director, Baltic SOF Intel Fusion Cell; and Piotr Krawczyk, Chief, Foreign Intelligence Agency.

GSOF 2021 will also host almost 50 defence and security suppliers on the exhibition floor, including major industry players who will be highlighting a range of products and services aimed at supporting global SOF operations. Additionally, several networking events will take place throughout the event, allowing attendees to engage with industry leaders, senior military personnel and representatives from more than 20 international delegations.

Today, the need for professional, well-equipped special forces is more critical than ever before – with the rise of Grey Zone warfare and non-state actors, Special Forces represent the most important line of defence [and we therefore] host SOF commanders, specialists and decision-makers from around the world at GSOF 2021 so that we can collectively discover new ways to operate and share intelligence and information in support of the forces that keep us safe,” explained Stu Bradin, President and CEO, Global SOF Foundation.



Georgian SOF instructors taking recruits through close quarter battle serials – a typical training mission for SOF operators. (Photo via Wikipedia Commons)

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