U.S Marines with the Force Reconnaissance Platoon, Maritime Raid Force, 31st Marine ExpeditionaryÂ Unit conducted training in coordination with the Expeditionary Operations Training Group, III Marine Expeditionary Unit and Palauâ€™s local authorities on July 16 â€“ 22.
Local authorities helped plan and participated in many of the exercises to provide the Marines with realistic training and a chance to ensure familiarity with Palau’s complex urban environment.
The training events consisted of multiple real-life scenarios in preparation for two different night raids in which the Marines secured the Airai Water Treatment Center and the Malakal Port while local authorities blocked-off roads and entrances at the locations.
â€œWhat we did was gather information on high valued targets and their activities while working with the police to ensure we captured the targets,â€ said Cpl. Myron R. Moore, a Tillamook, Oregon native and a Reconnaissance Transmission Operator with the Force Reconnaissance Platoon.
After capturing the targets, the Marines turned them over to the local authorities along with evidence and information, as they would in a real life occurrence.
â€œIt is critical for the U.S. and Palau to train together and be able to operate with each other,â€ said Sgt. Philip Reeder, an Apple Valley, California native and a RTO with the FRP.
Under a Compact of Free Association the U.S. is bound to work alongside and protect Palau.
â€œThe training in Palau gave us a chance to create a realistic training environment, and the local police were very cooperative and helpful,â€ said Cpl. Joshua Goodner, who is from Titusville, Florida and a scout with the FRP. â€œIt would be awesome to train here again.â€
This training is an example of the adaptability and flexibility required of the Americaâ€™s military. These types of exercises build on other urban training that the EOTG, III MEF and 31st MEU have held in the past year.