Marines and Sailors of Landing Force Company concluded training with Indonesian Marines from 6th Infantry Battalion 2nd Brigade, Korps Marinir at Antra Lina training area, Indonesia June 1.
The Landing Force Company, comprised mostly from 2nd Battalion, 23rd Marine Regiment and 4th Assault Amphibian Battalion, 4th Marine Division, trained with the partner nation in military operations on urban terrain, jungle warfare, combat lifesaving, combat marksmanship and martial arts.
The Marines and Sailors are participating in Cooperation Afloat Readiness and Training (CARAT) 2011, an annual series of bilateral exercises held between the U.S. and Southeast Asian nations.
The training completed in Indonesia set out with the goals of enhancing regional cooperation, promoting mutual trust and understanding and increasing operational readiness throughout the participating nations. With this training came benefits.
“I enjoyed the sniper training,” said Indonesian Marine Major Mannir Danuri, the training leader for the exercise. “Sniper training is very important and we learned not only shooting, but also tactics.”
Recently Marines have operated in urban terrain and the Indonesians are experts in jungle warfare; both nations brought expertise to the training from which each other could benefit.
“One thing we brought to the table was our combat marksmanship program,” said Sgt. Kairo A. Ortez, the platoon sergeant for 2nd Platoon, Landing Force Company. “We showed them how to shoot and move and change magazines on the move. The Marines were really happy to teach that because the Indonesians seemed to learn a lot from those exercises.”
One thing the Indonesians found particularly interesting was the combat glide and the speed reloads.
“I was very interested in how the Marines are able to shoot while they move,” said Indonesian Marine Capt. Rian Malfi, a company commander with Jaguar Company, 6th Infantry Battalion, 2nd Brigade, Korps Marinir. “That is something I really enjoyed seeing.”
While many U.S. Marines have experienced some form of jungle warfare training, the Indonesians brought something new for the Landing Force Marines to learn.
“I really enjoyed the jungle survival training,” Ortez said. “They taught us which plants to eat for nutrition as well as to cure some illnesses. One thing I thought was interesting was how they taught us to cook rice in three different ways: cooking it in bamboo, a coconut and even burying it in a sock and starting a fire over it. All the things they taught us made me feel like I could be in a jungle environment and survive without panicking.”
After the training was complete, both nations walked away knowing they had learned something from their counterparts.
“I believe that exchanging these tactics between us and the U.S. Marine Corps has made us both better,” said Malfi. “I only wish we had more time to train with the U.S.”
While both countries gained tactical experience from the exercise, they also formed a relationship with each other with a common bond of serving their countries.
“The U.S. Marines and the Indonesians, have a very good relationship,” said Malfi. “We are both training hard to serve our countries.”