Mechanized integration: 2nd Assault Amphibian Battalion conducts mechanized infantry assault
By Cpl. Justin Updegraff, II Marine Expeditionary Force
MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. --
Marines with Charlie Company, 2nd Assault Amphibian Battalion, 2nd Marine Division and Fox Company, 2nd Battalion, 2nd Marine Regiment came together to conduct a mechanized infantry assault from USS Wasp off the coast of North Carolina to Onslow Beach aboard Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, North Carolina April 8-9, 2015.
“Assault Amphibious Vehicles are what allow the Marine Corps to meet the amphibious assault mission,” said 1st Lt. Jeffrey P. Horwitz, a platoon commander with Charlie Co., 2nd AA Bn. “That is the bread and butter of what Marines do. That’s what makes us different from every other branch; the ability to put ground troops from ship to the shore safely and follow on to other objectives.”
A platoon size element of AAV’s splashed off the beach hauling a company of infantry Marines from 2nd Bn., 2nd Marines. The Marines embarked on the USS Wasp and began to prep for the following morning, where they conducted a beach assault and continued to a follow on objective inland.
“[2nd Bn., 2nd Marines] was brought along on this training evolution primarily to give them AAV familiarization,” Horwitz said. “The reason why that’s important right now is because a lot of the Marines in today’s Marine Corps don’t have that skill set, nor the relationship. This training allowed us to get back to the amphibious roots of doing those beach assaults.”
Having both units working together allowed them to figure out what works and what doesn’t work. The Marines worked on tactics, techniques and procedures to see what works best when conducting a mechanized infantry assault.
“The training is very significant,” said Sgt. Joshua Geswell, an assistant section leader with Charlie Co., 2nd AA Bn. “We don’t really get to do that much out here, that’s more Marine Expeditionary Unit operations. But starting on the ship then making our way inland is a very big step for all these guys.”
Geswell said that for being the first operation with this platoon and the first time they have conducted a mechanized infantry assault, it was one of the smoothest ops he has been on.
2nd Assault Amphibian Battalion
2nd Marine Division and Fox Company
2nd Marine Regiment
Assault Amphibious Vehicles
Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune