Rotational Force is a part of Special Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Force
Crisis Response-Africa and will be operating out of Mihail Kogalniceanu,
Romania. During the certification exercise, SPMAGTF-CR-AF was evaluated on
embassy reinforcement, non-combatant evacuation operations, foreign
humanitarian assistance, tactical recovery of aircraft and personnel, and
theater security cooperation, with BSRF conducting TSCs in Europe.
Gunnery Sgt. Emir
Hadzic, a foreign area staff non-commissioned officer for coordination, liaison,
assessment and training team Europe with Marine Corps Security Cooperation
Group, said the Marines participated in four days of classroom instruction
where they broke into working groups, analyzed their missions, and developed execution
plans in order to properly conduct military to military training.
focus heavily on preparation for, execution and general overview of military to
military programs and other theater security cooperation programs that Marines
with BSRF will be tasked with,” said Hadzic. “We’re here to focus on the
operational environment the Marines are going to work in and how they are going
to execute tasks.”
Toward the end of
the week, Marines with Lima Co. conducted a tactical recovery of aircraft and personnel
exercise aboard Marine Corps Outlying Field Atlantic, N.C.
Due to the short
notice nature of a TRAP mission, the Marines waited on standby to receive their
mission. When the mission was given to the Marines, they embarked onto two
MV-22B Ospreys, which took them to a previously unknown location to recover a role
player acting as a downed pilot. After assessing the pilot for any injuries,
the team escorted him to the landing zone where the Ospreys would extract them
Lance Cpl. Nicolas
Mackey, a rifleman with Lima Co., said that their training was designed to be
as realistic as possible.
“When it comes to
TRAP missions, we aren’t sure where or when it’s going to happen,” said Mackey.
“When an aircraft goes down, we’ve got to be able to recover the pilot and secure
intelligence, as well as personnel and equipment.”
While conducting their
certification exercise, Marines also worked with Samaritan’s Purse
International Relief Organization to simulate and better understand
humanitarian relief efforts in a deployed environment.
“During this certification
exercise, we are playing the part of a humanitarian organization that is
requesting assistance to move foreign humanitarian aid to a country that is in
need,” said Daniel Stephens, an international disaster response technical
advisor with the organization. “In this scenario, we approach a unit in the
Marine Corps and ask for assistance in moving our goods. We’re working
hand-in-hand and learning with each other.”