News: BSRF-14 Marines conduct live-fire exercise
Story by Lance Cpl. Krista James
MIHAIL KOGALNICEANU, Romania - Marines with Black Sea Rotational Force 14 participated in platoon live-fire training at a range near Mihail Kogalniceanu, Romania, Sept. 26, 2013. The engagement included fire-and-maneuver and buddy-rushing.
Although similar, fire-and-maneuver and buddy-rushing have differences. Buddy-rushing consists of squads using their designated marksmen to take out specific targets and, after those targets are taken out, the squad begins assaulting through the enemy position in buddy pairs. Fire-and-maneuver consists of suppressing an enemy and keeping the enemy’s head down while another squad moves around to eliminate the enemy as a whole squad, instead of buddy pairs.
First Lieutenant Jared Picard, 2nd platoon commander with BSRF-14, and Philadelphia native, said that this exercise will help Marines to be more effective for military-to-military engagements with partner nations.
“It’s important that when we do have the rounds we utilize them,” said Picard. [The exercise] also [keeps] us fresh for when we [advise] other [militaries] on how to do this [specific training].”
Lance Cpl. Taran Trussell, a rifleman with BSRF-14, and Murrieta, Calif., native said that he believes the training is important in case of contact with the enemy and it also makes the team stronger.
“It’s important because if you ever come in contact with the enemy, you need to be able to put accurate rounds on a target from a long distance,” said Trussell. “It [also] makes us all more familiar with the [M4 Carbine] as well as the [M27 Infantry Automatic Rifle]. It builds platoon cohesion as well as team skills, and it helps us work together under pressure.”
Both Picard and Trussell said that they enjoy participating in the platoon live-fire exercises.
“I like watching the team leaders control their teams and seeing the squad leaders actually use their squads in a more realistic scenario than just regular training,” said Picard. “It allows me to evaluate their abilities.”
“My favorite part of this training is fire and maneuvering because I like to make myself a better shot,” said Trussell.
Picard said that the training went very well and the Marines performed at a higher level than he expected, but that there’s always room for improvement in everything that the Marines do. Marines with BSRF-14 will have more opportunities to improve their abilities as the Ground Combat Element in future live-fire exercises.
Conducting effective training as a platoon prepares Marines with BSRF for military-to-military engagements with the Romanian Army and will directly tie-in with BSRF 14’s mission of promoting regional stability and security, increasing military capacity and interoperability, and maintaining partnerships with their counterparts in Eastern Europe.