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    US, Dutch Marines build camaraderie through water obstacle course

    Practice Run

    Photo By Staff Sgt. Mel Johnson | Marines with 2nd Force Reconnaissance Company, 2nd Reconnaissance Battalion, 2nd...... read more read more



    Story by Cpl. Mel Johnson 

    II Marine Expeditionary Force

    ROYAL DUTCH MARINE BARRACKS SAVANETA, Aruba – High tides made for a perfect training day at Spanish Lagoon, May 13, 2014, as Marines of 2nd Force Reconnaissance Company, 2nd Reconnaissance Battalion, 2nd Marine Division partnered with Royal Dutch Marines from the 32nd Raiding Squadron to complete a water obstacle course.

    Though the day’s primary event was a sure reprieve from the Aruban heat, maneuvering through the Dutch Marine’s water obstacle course was no easy task, but proved beneficial in building camaraderie between the Marines and enhancing interoperability of the two nations' armed forces and.

    The training evolution was a welcomed break from the company’s bilateral training exercise with the Dutch Marines, taking place during the month of May, and focuses on visit, board, search and seizure, maritime interdiction operations, live-fire weapons training, aerial sniping, diver propulsion device and amphibious operations.

    The Marines swam from obstacle to obstacle in teams of two as they climbed ropes, pulled themselves over suspended cargo pallets and leapt from the bridge support beams, among other events. By the second round, the effects of maneuvering through the watercourse were apparent on all participants.

    “It was definitely challenging, but it was a really fun time,” said Sgt. Joshua Martin, an assistant team leader with 2nd Force Reconnaissance Company. “I don’t think I’ve ever had that good of a forearm workout.”

    Before completing the obstacle course over water, the Marines had the opportunity to test their hand at a practice course on land.

    “It’s definitely different doing it over water than it is land,” Martin added. “But being able to run it over land first definitely helps to learn and really get the technique down.”

    The obstacle course not only provided a break from training and full body workout, but it allowed for the Marines to come together and bond during the course.

    “All the Marines did really well,” said Royal Dutch Marine Maj. Roelof Docter, commanding officer of the 32nd Raiding Squadron, Royal Dutch Marine Corps. “It was nice to see the Marines work together to complete the course, and in turn realize that they have more things in common than they thought.”

    The Marines' enthusiasm and effort in completing the course played a valuable part in building the Dutch and U.S. Marines relationship added Docter.

    “It helped to build a good working relationship,” said Martin. “Any time you do something more difficult, it brings people together and that’s the same with us, we got the chance to become closer with the Dutch Marines.”

    As the Dutch and U.S. Marines finished their final events of the obstacle course, tired but satisfied with their accomplishments, they looked forward to the successful completion of the months training.

    The Dutch bilateral exercise is conducted annually and reinforces training engagements conducted in previous years' training exercises, and creates a foundation for scheduled inter-military cooperation in the future.



    Date Taken: 05.13.2014
    Date Posted: 05.15.2014 21:19
    Story ID: 130011
    Location: SAVANETA, AW

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