News: British battle group turns over Forward Operating Base Delhi to Marines
Story by Cpl. Daniel Flynn
FORWARD OPERATING BASE DELHI, Islamic Republic of Afghanistan — 2nd Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment took control of Forward Operating Base Delhi recently from the British Battle Group South, made up of the Light Dragoons and the Mercians.
The turnover started in mid-June, when 2/8 started their move from Camp Leatherneck 50 miles north of this new location. They will remain in charge of their area of responsibility from this new location throughout the remainder of their deployment.
BG-south's mission here was to secure the province and build relations with the local population. 2/8's mission is to conduct counter insurgency operations is support of the Afghanistan government and the Afghan national army.
"The British are excited to have us here," said Gunnery Sgt. Josue Santoya, Golf Company gunnery sergeant, 2/8. "They have been very helpful."
For the past few weeks 2/8 has been working with the British to learn details and trends about their new operating area during the transfer of authority process.
"The Americans are great to work with, and I believe they are going to do well here," said Lance Cpl. Ian Dowling, part of the light electronic warfare team with BG-south. "It is a shame we haven't been able to work with them for longer."
Since arriving at FOB Delhi, the Marines of 2/8 have been working very closely with their British counterparts in order to help make this turnover as smooth as possible.
"Working with the British has been pretty good. They are very knowledgeable about the AO and are going the extra mile to help us out," said Sgt. Mark Anthony Sanzo, Fox Company squad leader, 2/8.
2/8 is here to continue building on the progress of those before them both British and U.S., according to Lt. Col. Christian G. Cabaniss, the commanding officer of 2/8.
"I believe we will be able to assist the Afghan government and the Afghan national security forces in getting tangible results while 2/8 is here," he said.
2/8 is one of several battalions belonging to Regimental Combat Team 3 whose area of operations includes all of southern Helmand province. The RCT's overall mission is to conduct counter-insurgency operations while supporting the development of the Afghan security forces and the legitimate Afghan government.