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So that it can function at all // Humans of NATO Days

28.05.2023, 09:13

Military logistics is something that cannot be seen at first glance, but neither army exercises nor events such as NATO Days in Ostrava & Czech Air Force Days can do without it. And securing an event of this scale is definitely not easy. First Lieutenant Pavel Macek from the 141st Supply Battalion in Pardubice told us about what all this entails, as well as what the composition of the logistics support unit looks like.

How did you get into the military?
It was quite complicated. I was working in the civilian sector and only on the recommendation of my friends who served in the army I became interested in employment, and now I have been in the army for about six and a half years.

Did you go straight to the professional army or did you start through Active Reserve?
I went straight to the pros.

Could you give us a little introduction to your unit and your role in it??
We are the 141st Supply Battalion from Pardubice, in which I am the deputy commander of the command company. We are in charge of supporting our staff and possibly other companies, so we have a liaison platoon, a transport platoon, and an operations platoon below us, which includes chemists, engineers, a team of EC operators, and soldiers with other specialties to support the supply battalion overall.

What does your job in logistics entail?
Logistics generally ensure that the exercises can function at all. For example, housing soldiers, creating facilities, supplying drinking water, fuel, ammunition, electricity, ensuring that the cooks have somewhere and what to cook with, or that everything he has is brought in and taken away again. We don't deal with all of it at the NATO Days, but many of those tasks are part of the event.

How long does an event like the NATO Days take logistically to prepare?
De facto the whole year. For example, even the supplies that are imported here, the chefs have been preparing and adjusting since the end of the previous year. The breakdown and delivery of the material is planned about two months in advance, when we also have preparatory meetings with the main organizer of the event, the Jagello 2000 Association. So, everything is being prepared for quite a long time and it is not entirely easy.

What was the most difficult or demanding logistical task you performed?
It's NATO Days, because there's a lot of equipment, and as I said, the event is prepared several months in advance. It is not easy to plan everything and somehow put it together.


Read also interviews with other people participating at NATO Days

Which of those subtasks is the most challenging?
If we're talking about activities here in the event area, it's definitely coordination. This means that from Monday, when the venue is being driven in, to Thursday afternoon, everything can be put in place and prepared in such a way that everything is ready for the weekend and my superiors are satisfied. It involves dozens of phone calls and something is constantly being coordinated somewhere, it's quite a complicated process.

What do you enjoy most about your job?
Definitely working with people. And that there is some action, that something is happening. It's not a stereotype.

What is the interest in serving in your battalion? What skills does an applicant need to have in order to become part of military logistics unit?
I can't adequately comment on the interest in our battalion, someone from our HR staff could tell you that, but practically every person who is interested in working, wants to get an education, must be responsible and must not be lazy can get into army logistics. There are many positions in logistics. In my opinion, there is a general problem with the recruitment of people to the armed forces. 
 

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