Partner to Compete, Compete to Deter

February 12, 2021

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The Marines and Sailors of the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit and the soldiers of the Japanese Ground Self Defense Force executed a bilateral raid at Kin Blue Beach and in the Central Training Area, Okinawa, Japan, February 1. The training kicked off as U.S. Marines from the 31st MEU’s Battalion Landing Team 3/4 conducted a small boat raid to secure the beach, launching on combat rubber raiding craft from the well deck of USS Ashland (LSD 48). Once the beach was secured, JGSDF soldiers landed in a CH-47 with 109th Aviation Unit, Western Army Aviation Group, to coordinate follow-on actions. During the next phase of training, U.S. Marines and JGSDF soldiers flew in to Landing Zone Dodo in the CTA, with Marines from BLT 3/4 providing security to the south as JGSDF pushed north to clear a town…

U.S. Marines and Sailors stand together with members of the Japanese Ground Self Defense Force, Australian Navy, U.S. Space Force, and U.S. Air Force, embarked together aboard amphibious assault ship USS America (LHA 6) in the Philippine Sea, Jan. 21.

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