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08-01-04, 09:47 PM #1
3/12 Marines rain steel at Yausubetsu
YAUSUBETSU, Japan — (July 26, 2004) -- More than 220 Marines and sailors with 3rd Battalion, 12th Marine Regiment, 3rd Marine Division from Camp Hansen, Okinawa, Japan, arrived at the Yausubetsu Maneuvering Area to conduct an artillery relocation exercise here July 21 through Aug. 15.
The Marines of Battery R are conducting live-fire training in order to enhance and sustain their artillery skills. The Marines plan to conduct battery-level training that improves operational readiness, staff development and integration through collateral training.
The training has been conducted on mainland Japan since the governments of Japan and the United States formally agreed to cease the firing of artillery on Okinawa in 1996. Fire maneuver areas were chosen on the mainland for artillery training exercises at Hijudai, East and North Fuji, Ojojihara and Yausubetsu.
The signed agreement requires the Japanese government to fund all additional expenses not incurred when firing on Okinawa, such as transportation of personnel, equipment and barracks facilities.
Guidelines for the Marines include training, at most, four times a year, with each training period having a maximum of 10 live-fire training days and additional days for deployment and withdrawal periods. The maximum number of Marines training can be slightly more than 300 servicemembers, which does not include support units, and may include 12 howitzers and approximately 60 vehicles.
“The mission of this deployment is for the unit to enhance their operational readiness,” said Lt. Col. Samuel T. Studdard, commanding officer, 3/12. “The Marines and sailors are expected not only to train hard but also be ready to form a combat-ready cohesive warfighting team.”
The Marines and sailors of 3/12, previously on Yautsubetsu from September to October 2003, conducted artillery live-fire exercises. Every time the unit trains in the field, they become more technically and tactically proficient, Studdard explained.
“The unit will begin with the basics,” Studdard said. “Implementing the crawl, walk and run method of training is how this deployment will be executed.”
Planning for months before the deployment, the Marines and sailors started their training before departing for this exercise.
“Initially, the unit did their homework off the chalkboard in the classroom in Okinawa,” Studdard said.
But it’s training in the field that allows the units to developed as a cohesive team, according to Lance Cpl. Charles P. Clark, artillery meteorological man, 12th Marine Regiment, Headquarters Battery.
“This deployment will bring the Marines together because we are all roughing it together,” Clark said. “We will have the chance to understand and appreciate the role’s of every Marine and sailor while we are here.”
All Marine! All The Time!
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