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thedrifter
06-19-08, 07:46 AM
Columbus serves as hostile territory for Marines

Updated: June 19, 2008 04:59 AM

David MacAnally/Eyewitness News

Columbus - Marine choppers lead the way, followed by the ground forces.

The scene isn't Baghdad but Bartholomew County. It's the Marine Corps 26th Expeditionary Unit out of North Carolina, training to take out a mock terrorist base that makes IED's in the mock country of Onyx.

Hours before the drill, Marines warned neighbors around 13th and Michigan Streets.

Lt. Timothy Patrick says the purpose of Urban Warfare Training is to "get us out of our comfort zone. Get us into an environment we're not familiar with. Introduce us to stressers and new situations."

One hundred Marines were involved in the force in choppers and on the ground. A Hollywood special effects team was there to make it realistic. Some of the actor/terrorists will surrender and others will fight.

Staff Sgt. Bryce Piper says "That young Marine in charge of others Marine is making decisions that are having a big impact. Making decisions on the lives of his Marines and how we interact with other cultures."

It may be Bartholomew County now. But it soon could be Baghdad. The Marines have now completed two weeks of urban warfare training in Indiana.

These same Marines have also been busy helping those who have been impacted by the recent severe floods.

Ellie