News: MRF-D Marines fight for green belts in MCMAP
Story by Sgt. Sarah Fiocco
ROBERTSON BARRACKS, Northern Territory, Australia – Marines with Lima Company, 3rd Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment, Marine Rotational Force – Darwin, are furthering their knowledge of hand-to-hand combat techniques in an effort to earn their green belts, a requirement for all infantry Marines, in the Marine Corps Martial Arts Program, here, throughout this month.
With a little extra time on their hands in between training exercises, the Marines should have no problem reaching this goal.
“It’s been a challenge to get everyone up to that level with back-to-back deployments,” said Sgt. Matthew Barker, machine gun section leader and martial arts instructor trainer, Weapons Platoon, Lima Co., 3rd Bn., 3rd Marine Regiment, MRF-D. “We’re trying to use this deployment to get everyone there.”
As infantry Marines who deploy often, knowing close-combat techniques becomes important, said Barker.
“It puts them in situations they wouldn’t usually find themselves in, and they have to adapt,” said Barker, of Roy Washington. “It instills in them the three disciplines of MCMAP: mental, physical and character. We develop these through tie-ins, warrior case studies and martial culture studies. It helps develop them as leaders and Marines.”
Each discipline focuses on something completely different. The development of mental discipline stresses situational awareness, decision making and learning about other culture’s martial arts. The character focuses on Marine Corps core values and how to be a good citizen, while the physical discipline involves learning the different fighting techniques.
In addition to developing the Marines as war fighters, Barker said it can help Marines progress to the next rank.
“It helps you in your career and makes you competitive for promotion. It may give you that edge against someone who doesn’t have as high a belt,” Barker explained. “These junior Marines will become leaders. They’ll know how to tell their junior Marines how to get their next belt, and it sets a good example.”