U.S. Marine Lance Cpl. Gabriel Marrero, a fire directional control specialist with Headquarters Battery, 12th Marine Regiment, 3rd Marine Division, stands security during Thunder Field Training Exercise on Camp Hansen, Okinawa, Japan, Sept. 18, 2019. The purpose of the exercise is to rehearse setting up an expeditionary combat operations center and refine procedures for doing so. Marrero is a native of Atlantic City, N.J. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Pfc. Jamal Norris)
U.S. Marine Lance Cpl. Gabriel Marrero, a fire directional control specialist with Headquarters Battery, 12th Marine Regiment, 3rd Marine Division, stands security during Thunder Field Training Exercise on Camp Hansen, Okinawa, Japan, Sept. 18, 2019. The purpose of the exercise is to rehearse setting up an expeditionary combat operations center and refine procedures for doing so. Marrero is a native of Atlantic City, N.J. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Pfc. Jamal Norris)

2019 Thunder FTX

by Cpl. Esgar Rojas
3rd Marine Division

OKINAWA, Japan - U.S. Marines with 12th Marine Regiment, 3rd Marine Division, practiced a command and control during exercise, Thunder Field Training Exercise, aboard Camp Hansen’s Central Training Area on Okinawa, Japan, Sept. 18, 2019.

This exercise is conducted in order to prepare the Marines and Sailors for Cobra Gold, the largest multinational exercise conducted in the Indo-Pacific, which will be held in February 2020.

“We are working on different procedures and methods to get faster at setting up and displacing our command and control cell,” said Master Gunnery Sgt. James Knaus, the regimental operations chief with 12th Marine Regiment. “This will provide more survivability in this area of operations.”

The regimental forward and main combat operation centers went out to the central training area to ensure their communications equipment was functional. 12th Marines conducts field training exercises approximately two to three times a year to maintain readiness and meet training requirements.

The purpose of the training is to ensure all of the communication equipment functions properly, establish communications with higher commands, and refine procedures, described Knaus.

“For this exercise, we bring everything we need,” said Knaus “If we come to the field and we forgot it, we forgot it. We move on and adapt.”

The training exercise ensures 12th Marine Regiment is familiar with establishing an expeditionary combat operations center in order to increase combat readiness and lethality of the Marines.

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