MAY 26, 2016, AL QUWEYRAH, Jordan – Marines with 1st Battalion, 2nd Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division and the Jordanian 77th Marines Battalion honed conducted squad attacks as part of Eager Lion 16 in Al Quweyrah, Jordan, May 19.
The focus of the training was fire and maneuver as a squad, which was put to the test with a patrol before taking simulated enemy fire. From there, Marines initiated buddy rushes down the line until reaching a trench.
“The formations we use during this training allows us to provide all-around security and make it effective to maneuver as a whole,” said Lance Cpl. Phillip T. Bennett, a rifleman with Company A, 1st Bn., 2nd Marines. “It’s important for Marines to have an open mind when training in a new environment like this.”
Marines and Jordanians integrated as a squad to put rounds and training grenades down range before reaching a trench, clearing out targets and launching a counterattack.
“We have been training alongside the Marines for the past couple of years, and we want to hold our battalion to the same standards as U.S. Marines,” said 1st Lt. Mahmood Baniomar, a company executive officer with the Jordanian 77th Marines Battalion. “Training out here is worth every moment.”
Marines have noted the integration of the two forces during training exercises has become more seamless since the start of Eager Lion.
“I have worked with the Jordanians before in Afghanistan, and they are very spot-on,” Bennett said. “Our techniques and the way we train is very similar.”
Baniomar noted the value of not only training in this environment, but also using the weapons and equipment put in their hands by the Marines.
“My men are getting more proficient with their weapons,” Baniomar said. “Some of the equipment we do not have in our battalion yet, but when we do get the weapons our Marines will already know how to use them because we are training here.”
Another priority from Baniomar’s perspective is regional stability, and the Jordanian forces’ commitment to being ready for the future.
“We may be conducting operations in any climate of any surrounding area,” Baniomar said. “I am grateful for the Marines taking this chance to come to Jordan and train with us. The opportunity is excellent for all, from my young Marines to us officers.”
Eager Lion is a recurring exercise between partner nations designed to strengthen military-to-military relationships, increase interoperability, and enhance regional security and stability.