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Unique training program builds skills of female military intel personnel
Burkina Faso and AFRICOM co-host Basic Intel Course
Women graduates of AFRICOM sponsored intel training class gather for a group photo, Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, Nov. 18, 2016. (Photo by James Gentille, U.S. Air Forces Europe-Africa/Released)
1 photo: Basic Intel Course conducted for female African military partners
Photo 1 of 1: Women graduates of AFRICOM sponsored intel training class gather for a group photo, Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, Nov. 18, 2016. (Photo by James Gentille, U.S. Air Forces Europe-Africa/Released) Download full-resolution version

Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso – Twenty-five female officers and non-commissioned officers from Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Chad, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal and Tunisia participated in a regional all-female Basic Intelligence Course (BIC) in Ouagadougou from 31 October – 18 November.  The class also included two associate instructors from Mali and Tunisia.

The training is designed to develop the skills necessary to operate effectively as part of a team by supporting tactical operations in international peacekeeping, peace enforcement, or security operations.  Topics included intelligence concepts, the intelligence cycle, collection management, Intelligence Preparation of the Environment (IPE), map reading, the Law of Armed Conflicts, Human Rights, intelligence writing, briefing techniques, intelligence reporting and intelligence analysis and tools - all of which are essential for successful military intelligence operations.

The course culminated with every student in each group presenting their portion of an intelligence brief to the Burkinabe Chief of Military Intelligence, Colonel Mady Savadogo, who said that she was very impressed with the level of training and professionalism the students displayed.

The students had a surprise visit from U.S. Ambassador Tulinabo Mushingi who stopped by to observe the training and talk to the students about the importance of development, democracy, and defense. 

Providing an all-female class highlighted the importance of training all military members, not only to maximize the success of women in the military intelligence field, but to maximize the success of the military organization as a whole. Women in the military face challenges that are different from their male counterparts, which is why it is important to create opportunities to provide training for females. 

As important as the training, were the relationships the students established throughout the three week course.  The students took advantage of their weekends by visiting several Burkinabe landmarks, to include the Laongo Sculpture Garden and the biennial International Arts and Crafts Fair, better known as the SIAO.  The class also donated supplies and spent time with the orphans at Holy Therese in Lumbila. 

The training course was sponsord by U.S. Africa Command and offered as part of its Intelligence Security Cooperation and Engagement Division’s Military Intelligence Training Program (MITP).  MITP offers a variety of courses ranging from basic to intermediate and advanced, focused on developing African Partner intelligence capability to support operations, assist decision making, and support the law of armed conflict.  To meet the unique training requirements of our African Partners, training is offered in-country and conducted in English and French.

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