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Treaty office maintains Warren's integrity

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Malcolm Mayfield
  • 90th Missile Wing Public Affairs
The treaty compliance office on F.E. Warren Air Force Base, Wyo., works on keeping the base true to the treaties Warren is responsible for year-round.

The main mission of the treaty office is to know the requirements of the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty, Open Skies Treaty and Chemical Weapons Convention Treaty to prepare the proper compliance, planning and guidance for the wing to follow.

"My goal here is to ensure compliance with these treaties and make sure those that rely on us to implement the requirements of the treaties, from our wing commander to the secretary of state, can do so knowing F.E. Warren Air Force Base is good-to-go," said Roger Jacobsen, 90th Missile Wing treaty compliance office specialist.

There are three treaties Warren monitor's, but only one of them directly affects the base's mission.

The New START Treaty is between the U.S. and the Russian Federation on the measures for further reduction and limitation of strategic offensive arms. To maintain the treaty's integrity, Russians visit bases that would have a direct impact on the treaty.

"The purpose of the treaty inspections is to verify the data we've told them," said Rex Ellis, 90th MW treaty compliance office chief. "They have a total of 18 inspections they're allowed to do per treaty year. There only being 12 months in a year, they have to do one about every three weeks to get them done."

The U.S. conducts the same types and numbers of inspections in Russia. Both countries can have inspections take place at virtually any time of the year, meaning F.E. Warren has to be ready year round.
They are responsible for handling all of the treaties and inspections the base is involved in. Recruit volunteers to do the same amount of work an office with more personnel would be tasked to do.

"When a team's here and we have to do a lot of work, we require more manning, which is why we conduct all of our inspections with volunteers," Ellis said. "We train escorts how to help us and when we have a team in-country, we contact those escorts to let them know."

As an escort your job is to accompany and ensure the treaty compliances are enforced and all of the treaty rights are offered to the inspection team, said Capt. Shaun Brunson, 90th MW command post chief.

Brunson has assisted with two inspections since he started volunteering as an escort for the treaty office.

"I think they are one of the most experienced and knowledgeable sections we have on base," Brunson said. "[Ellis] is extremely proficient in the treaty verbiage, as in, how we conduct the inspections."

Having worked in the treaty office for 20 years, Ellis has seen the course of the treaties and has insight on the inner workings of each treaty he manages.

"Knowing the treaties and local compliance plans is helpful, but Mr. Ellis, with his years of experience as the treaty guru, has developed very specific checklists for every aspect of this job," Jacobsen said.

The treaty office works with the Russians when they visit Warren during their inspection period and offers them their treaty rights and at the same time protecting U.S. national and base interests. Treaty inspections are very specific in what is seen.

Allowing Russia to see U.S. weaponry provides them with the information they are allowed to verify and is part of the overall transparency of the two countries.