Photo Information

Capt. Kyle Kauffman, an action officer with I Marine Expeditionary Force, briefs a portion of the operations order during a rehearsal of concepts drill for I MEF Large Scale Exercise 16 at Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, Calif., Aug. 5, 2016. LSE 16 tests I MEF’s ability to plan, deploy and command and control a force of more than 50,000 Marines and Sailors against a near-peer enemy force. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Lance Cpl. Tyler Harrison/RELEASED)

Photo by Lance Cpl. Tyler Harrison

I MEF prepares to kick off LSE-16

11 Aug 2016 | Cpl. Demetrius Morgan I Marine Expeditionary Force

I MEF LSE-16 is designed to enhance the command and control and interoperability between the I MEF command element staff and its higher, adjacent and subordinate command headquarters. I MEF LSE-16 simulates the planning, deployment and combat operations of a MEF-level force of more than 50,000 military members within a partner country while operating alongside coalition forces. The Marines and their partner nation will face off against a peer competitor, which is a unique challenge. The exercise also increases the I MEF Headquarters Group’s ability to deploy and provide base security, facilities and other service support to sustain the MEF command element over a prolonged period of time.

“The most important part of this exercise is to get the entire MEF and MHG working together,” said Capt. Brian Moeller, the company commander of I Marine Expeditionary Force Headquarters Group. “We want to get elements of headquarters, combat support and the command element all integrated into one organization so we can fight as effectively and efficiently as possible.” 

The mission of the I MEF is to provide the Marine Corps with a globally responsive, expeditionary and fully scalable Marine Air-Ground Task Force capable of generating, deploying and employing ready forces and formations for crisis response, forward presence, major combat operations and campaigns.

During I MEF LSE-16, the Marines and Sailors will conduct a variety of operations in support of the simulated mission given, including mechanized assaults, raids and employment of quick reaction forces in response to spontaneous threats.

Marines at I MEF LSE-16 will be thrust into a simulated hostile scenario, which will force them to think critically and quickly in order to respond effectively. Teamwork between the Marines will be imperative in order to successfully accomplish their objectives.  

“This exercise is very eye-opening on how much goes into a deployment and how much goes into an operation,” said Sgt. Joshua Johnson, an operational network specialist with I MEF. “The best thing you can take away from it is teamwork. You have to be able to work with all these different people to make one mission work.”

Exercise participants include MHG and its subordinate battalions, 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing, 1st Marine Logistics Group and 1st Marine Division. The training will also integrate service members from other branches and Canada.

Although Marines take part in training exercises on a regular basis within their respective units, I MEF LSE-16 provides a unique opportunity for Marines to collaborate and train as a comprehensive MEF-level force prepared for future operations on any scale.

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