Editor’s Note: The MAGTF, or Marine Air-Ground Task Force, is a capability unique to the United States Marine Corps. MAGTF is a term used Marines to describe the principal organization for all of its missions across the range of military operations. The MAGTF contains four basic elements– the command and control portion, the ground portion, the aviation component, and the logistics component. The goal is to field a balanced air-ground, combined arms task unit under a single commander which is structured to accomplish a specific mission.

In order to demonstrate the ability to transport, tactically insert, support, and conduct high-intensity, combined-arms operations with a battalion-sized infantry force, 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing conducted a large-scale tactical exercise in conjunction with 3rd Battalion, 6th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division at Fort Stewart, Georgia, during Exercise Eager Response, Feb. 24-29.

During the exercise, Marines trained in events including casualty evacuation, assault support missions and aerial refueling, proving the Marine Air-Ground Task Force a highly combat effective force.

MAGTF Supports Exercise Eager Response 16
Marines with Marine Heavy Helicopter Squadron 366 load a CH-53E Super Stallion with meals, ready-to-eat during Exercise Eager Response at Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort, S.C., Feb. 25, 2016. During the exercise, Marines trained in events such as casualty evacuation, assault support missions and aerial refueling, proving the Marine Air-Ground Task Force is a highly effective combat force. (Photo by USMC/PFC Nicholas Baird)

3/6 Marines were transported from Marine Corps Air Station New River, North Carolina, in MV-22B Ospreys and CH-53E Super Stallion helicopters to accomplish a long-range insert of a battalion-sized force into the remote training area of the U.S. Army base.

The exercise allowed cross-training between ground and air units. Where the air units practiced aerial deliveries from a KC-130J, the ground unit focused on receiving the delivery. In the same manner, the ground units focused on proper casualty evacuation procedures that called on Marines to treat a simulated casualty while the air assets worked to hastily transport them aboard a Super Stallion.

As a continuation of Wing Exercise 15, 2nd MAW continues to train its planners in all aspects of command and control honing its ability to provide outstanding support to the MAGTF.

“This exercise was designed to test the squadron and battalion-level planners in their integration of combined efforts,” said Maj. Gen. Gary L. Thomas, 2nd MAW commanding general. “Our ability to transport, support and tactically insert ground troops in any environment is what makes us a highly effective force.”

“This training reiterates our dedication to supporting the 2nd Marine Division; our dedication to teaching our Marines and enhancing their knowledge; and ultimately, getting it right when it matters, with little to no notice,” Thomas said.

In addition to being forced to defeat a simulated enemy, Exercise Eager Response prepared Marines for future training requirements, such as weapons and tactics instructor’s course, and future deployment operations.

The full article can be viewed here.

(Featured photo courtesy of USMC/PFC Nicholas Baird)

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