COMBINED ARMS TRAINING CENTER CAMP FUJI, Japan --
Since 1775, the Marines Corps is America’s first line of defense, meaning Marines need to respond swiftly to orders during times of crisis.
To maintain their combat readiness, one Marine Corps unit recently completed their annual exercise which emphasized weapons familiarization and improved the service members’ tactical skill sets.
Combat Logistics Company 36 Marines and augments returned to Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni, Japan, Aug. 4, from Exercise Dragon Fire 2015 at Combined Arms Training Center Camp Fuji, Japan.
Throughout the monthlong exercise, service members participated in various live-fire exercises including: table 3 courses, night fire, and fire and maneuver movements. The company additionally conducted convoy and recovery operations with simulated improvised explosive devices and enemy fire.
“I believe overall the exercise went well,” said Capt. Roderick J. Singleton, commanding officer of CLC-36. “I think Marines and sailors learned a lot from this, to include learning from the mistakes they made which enhanced their combat mindset.”
Having a combat mindset means being prepared for the mental and physical stresses adhered to a combat environment, which is essential to the Marine Corps mission.
Service members in garrison perform the day-to-day duties of their military occupational specialty and may not have time to practice their combat related skill sets.
“This exercise is very important because (MCAS Iwakuni) is a small base and there are not a lot of opportunities to go do these types of things,” said 1st Lt. Chace Long, supply officer with CLC-36. “This training definitely makes the service members a little more combat ready.”
Aside from improving service members’ tactical skill sets, the exercise aids in building unit cohesion.
“Every time service members go to the field or any stressful environment, it brings them closer together and builds that unit camaraderie and cohesion,” said Singleton. “In garrison, there are a lot of distractions where as in the field you don’t really have anything but each other.”
CLC-36 attempts to bring as many other units as possible to improve their combat readiness as well. This year a Marine Corps Community Services Marine accompanied CLC-36 to support the unit while in the field, thus giving the Marine a chance to experience his job outside the garrison force.
According to Singleton, CLC-36 aims to make the exercise bigger and better every year, adding that they saw room for improvement and will makes changes for next year.
The company will continue to conduct exercises like Dragon Fire to maintain their Marines’ and sailors’ combat readiness in accordance with the Marine Corps mission to win America’s battles.