‘We live in the most consequential region on earth at the most consequential time’
Recently, top military leaders from 24 different countries gathered in Dhaka under the sponsorship of the US and Bangladesh armies to discuss ways to advance friendship, understanding, and peace in the crucial Indo-pacific region.
General Charles A. Flynn
Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina addressed the event as chief guest while Bangladesh army chief General Shafiuddin Ahmed and General Charles A. Flynn of the US army addressed the seminar.
With just nine nations, the IPAMS was established in 1977. Honolulu, Hawaii hosted the first conference. For the third time, Bangladesh served as cohost of the seminar. In 1993 and 2014, Bangladesh shared the hosting duties.
The Security World is the only publication to which General Charles A. Flynn has supplied his written address.
The speech he gave is as follows:
[Aloha! E komo mai!]
Welcome to the 46th Indo-Pacific Armies Management Seminar! Thank you all for making the time to be at this important event!
Thank you to the Bangladesh Army, and to GEN Shafiuddin for the warm reception in your beautiful country.
I’m very excited to be back in Bangladesh. In 2014, I was here as a delegate to this conference and I was the one to catch the chicken – I challenge all of you here to do the same this week!
This event, IPAMS, coupled with IPACC, is the largest land forces seminar in the Indo-Pacific region. It is our opportunity to exchange views and ideas, develop the relationships between our nations, and strengthen our existing bonds.
The Theme for this year’s IPAMS is “Prospects and Challenges of Maintaining Peace and Stability in the Indo-Pacific Region.”
We are here today because this community of nations believe in the promise of peace and stability but peace and stability only come when we have security in our homelands.
Each of us here today have a responsibility – a mandate from our governments – to defend our homeland – to secure our nation’s sovereignty.
That is what we all believe in – what we all pursue Defending our national sovereignty.
We live in the most consequential region on earth at the most consequential time in our history.
The Indo-Pacific region is vast, collectively – we represent over Billions of people. Billions of people that represent vast potential for progress and growth. Billions of People that need security, that need protecting.
The challenge to secure our homelands is great – there is immense competition for resources – the water, energy, food and minerals to power factories and industry that drive our economies forward.
The changing climate is raising sea levels and increasing the strength and frequency of storms. Climate change is altering the way we plan for our futures and how we live our daily lives.
There are numerous other challenges: violent extremism, river damming, border disputes, and other security dilemmas from both inside and outside our nations that challenge the Sovereign rights of all of our Sovereign nations.
It is through the people in this room, and the Armies that you represent that we face those challenges. That is why land power exists – to secure borders, to protect our homelands.
We are all here at this seminar because we believe in increased cooperation, increased transparency, and respect for the national sovereignty of other nations.
Increasing cooperation amongst nations, so that we can build shared prosperity and achieve common goals together.
Increasing transparency so that intentions and actions are well known, reduces tensions and benefits everyone.
Respecting the national sovereignty of all nations – wherein nations acknowledge that the existing international rules, agreements, and organizations prevent using force to upend the peace and stability of this region.
This community of nations believes in these things – I know this because we’ve been practicing it for years.
When disaster has struck, and it strikes in this region of the world more often than any other on earth, it was the leaders in this room and the organizations you represent that stepped up and assisted others.
After natural disasters including earthquakes, cyclones, tsunamis, volcanic eruptions it was the armies represented here that responded to help.
With security concerns from both within our borders and from outside them, this region bands together and helps to restore order and balance, to preserve a Free and Open region.
Time and time again, when our neighbors needed help, it was the Armies of the Region that shouldered the burden. We do this for our neighbors because we know, when it strikes our shores, they will be there for us too.
That is what makes Land power different. Land power is special – its the force that binds together the region’s security architecture. The relationships we build when working together on the ground in training, in exercises, in exchanges, in conferences like this one, grows the bonds between our nations.
Those bonds are how we know that our partners will be there when we need them – they are vital to ensuring that we all continue to benefit from a Free and Open international system in this region.
That is why events like this one are so critical. It allows us to understand one another – to put a face, a voice, a name to our counterparts across the region.
It allows us to see and understand some of the challenges we each face and work together to find solutions. It allows for relationships and friendships to grow and for us all to continue to draw closer to one another.
Because it is together that we face the challenges in front of us – it is together that we will continue to solve the security challenges in this region – it is together that we will continue to maintain the peace and stability in this community of nations.
Thank you again to GEN Shafiuddin, to the Bangladesh Army here, and to you all for attending.
I’m very much looking forward to the rest of the program this week, visiting Cox’s Bazaar and deepening our friendships!
Charles A. Flynn is a United States Army general who serves as commanding general of United States Army Pacific since June 4, 2021. He previously served as Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations, Plans and Training (G3/5/ 7) of the Army Staff from June 2019 to May 2021. He is the younger brother of Lieutenant General Michael T. Flynn, the 24th United States National Security Advisor, and first to Donald Trump.
Flynn was raised in Middletown, Rhode Island, and graduated from Middletown High School in 1981. Flynn received his commission via the Army Reserve Officers' Training Corps at the University of Rhode Island in 1985. He earned a Bachelor of Science in Marketing from the University of Rhode Island in 1985.
Flynn received a Master of Arts in National Security and Strategic Studies from the Naval War College in 1997 and a Master of Science in Joint Campaign Planning and Strategy from the Joint Advanced Warfighting School within the Joint Forces Staff College of National Defense University.
The Security World is the only publication to whom USARPAC Commanding general Charles A. Flynn has provided his written address.