News: Photo Essay: 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit initiates training engagement team in Jordan; platoon-sized training events provide unique opportunity for junior Marines
Story by Capt. Robert Shuford
JORDAN - Over the past couple of months approximately 150 Marines from the 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit had the unique opportunity to participate in training events at the platoon level with members of the Jordanian Marine Corps in southern Jordan.
The Marines conducted a variety of training events while ashore that included live-fire ranges, land navigation, patrolling, offensive and defensive operations in mountainous and desert terrain all while furthering relationships with, and gaining a better understanding of, their Jordanian counterparts.
Starting in September the 24th MEU was able to send two rotations of Marines ashore along with a training cadre lead by a major to a pre-established base in southern Jordan. The units that conducted the training were platoon-sized with the senior Marine being a 1st Lt., with about 55 junior Marines ranked Sgt. and below from varying job fields, which included infantry, reconnaissance, communications and logistics.
The training initiated by the 24th MEU, called the MEU Engagement Team, or MET, provided a unique opportunity for these Marines who would’ve most likely spent this time embarked at sea aboard one of the ships of the Iwo Jima Amphibious Ready Group, the Navy’s 3-ship unit that the 24th MEU is deployed with.
“This training proved to be one of the better small-unit training events during our time in the Central Command theater,” said Col. Frank Donovan, commanding officer, 24th MEU. “Not only was the bilateral training with Jordanians fantastic, but the physically demanding, foot-mobile training and enhanced marksmanship ranges we conducted left our Marines better prepared for crisis response.”
The 24th MEU spent the past six months serving as a crisis response force in the U.S. Central Command and Navy’s 5th Fleet areas of responsibility. The 24th MEU completed this requirement Nov. 5 and is currently in the European Command and 6th Fleet area of responsibility on its eighth month of a deployment.
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