MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP PENDLETON, Calif. --
Through the darkness, Marines began storming out of their Assault Amphibious Vehicles just outside of a mock combat town as blank rounds from assault rifles bellowed into the night.
Holding their position near their AAVs, the Marines returned suppressing fire as a faint whistling noise wailed in the distance. “Whiteout, whiteout, whiteout,” exclaimed a Marine in the tactical stack, warning his peers of an oncoming grenade. A flashbang grenade went off, simulating enemy grenades.
Marines from Golf Company, 2nd Battalion, 4th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division conducted their follow-on training with Expeditionary Operations Training Group on Feb. 4, 2016, in preparation for their upcoming deployment with the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit.
After an amphibious insert onto the beach, they executed a raid on the mechanized assault course using combined arms to destroy an enemy in a fortified position, said Staff Sgt. Cesar Gonzales, Weapons Platoon Sergeant, Golf Co. They left from the beach, gained high ground, set up a support-by-fire position, conducted combined arms drills and infiltrated trenches to clear the objective. The night raid consisted of two different combat towns. One was on lower ground, while the second town was up on a hill. The first combat town consisted of single-story buildings while the second combat town contained a three-story building.
Simulated improvised explosive devices and trip-wires were set inside the buildings Marines raided, providing more challenge to the combat scenarios.
“What these Marines ought to take away from this training is that someone took the time to build this evolution because they acquired casualties in the real-world scenario,” said Gonzalez, a native of New Braunfels, Texas. “So now, they are trying to beat it in their head that an enemy that practices, knows their terrain, knows how to employ weapons systems and is capable of sustaining themselves can affect their casualty rate.”
Marines with Golf Co. train incessantly to achieve the peak performance they desire.
“This is demanding training,” said 1st Lt. Jonathan M. Parsons, the executive officer of Golf Co. “Marines are getting classes and conducting rehearsals all day, because it takes hard work at every level to ensure success of the company and the unit.”
“When it comes to EOTG, they do a great job of facilitating realistic training; these Marines actually get to see a baseline of what a real-life drill is supposed to look like,” said Gonzalez. “All these training and culminating events set them up for success no matter where they go.”
Having conducted their room sweeps and suppressed the enemy, Marines began conducting casualty evacuation out of the combat town back onto their AAVs. The squad leaders made sure all of their Marines got out of the building before making their way back to the checkpoint. With all of the buildings secure, the squad leaders headed back to the AAVs. The Marines completed their training. The night raid was finally over.