"Through support in planning, establishing maritime dominance, executing ship-to-shore evolutions, and preparing for a simulated shipboard weapons shoot — the BATARG was able to receive valuable training and enable the success of the 26th MEU's mission ashore," said Lt. Cmdr. Grace Reilly, BATARG assistant operations officer.
The BATARG consists of the flagship amphibious assault ship USS Bataan (LHD 5), the amphibious transport dock ship USS New York (LPD 21) and the dock landing ship USS Oak Hill (LSD 51), and is supported by the guided-missile destroyer USS Stout (DDG 55).
The BATARG and 26th MEU team concurrently utilized air and surface assets to transport forces and equipment to the two islands.
The integration of the Navy-Marine Corps team was an essential element of the sustainment training on the islands. As a cohesive team, the ARGMEU transported forces and firepower to Karan Island and facilitated fire support by utilizing artillery assets.
In preparation for training on the islands, reconnaissance Marines conducted hydrographic surveys under the cover of darkness, provided amphibious reconnaissance and surveillance, and maneuvered combat rubber raiding craft throughout the littoral region.
Sourcing combat power ashore from a sea-based platform allows the ARGMEU to be flexible, expeditionary, and postured to shape actions across the full range of military operations in remote, marginally accessible, environments.
In conjunction with the BATARG and 26th MEU, The Special Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Force — Crisis Response — Central Command 19.2 (SPMAGTF-CR-CC) also conducted a full mission profile, tactical recovery of aircraft and personnel exercise on Karan and Kurayn Islands on April 23.
The preplanned exercise affords the SPMAGTF-CR-CC an opportunity to sustain and improve its critical mission capabilities, as well as demonstrate its ability to rapidly respond to emergent threats and crises.