August 7, 2015 – MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP LEJEUNE, North Carolina — Forty Marines with Bravo Company, 2nd Law Enforcement Battalion, II Marine Expeditionary Force Headquarters Group, conducted a week long exercise simulating the protection operations of a submarine during fueling at a port, at range Greater Sandy Run Area Forward Operating Base at Camp Lejeune, August 4-7, 2015.
The operation, known as the Advanced Mission Rehearsal Exercise, tested the Marines’ ability to clear structures, recapture assets, and search personnel and vehicles.
“We train a lot with clearing rooms,” said Lance Cpl. Ariel Garza, a military policeman with the company. “With the heightened awareness of active shooters now, we have to be able to control the situation quickly.”
The Marines took on the role of security forces and executed the mission of an interior guard.
“We have roving patrols set in place to constantly have a set of eyes on the surrounding area around the submarine,” said Staff Sgt. Christopher Lazaruis, a platoon sergeant with the company. “We also have a designated marksman in place to keep over watch.”
The Marines conducted 24-hour operations, in which they took turns guarding the submarine and the compound that surrounds it.
Staff Sergeant Lazaruis said the Marines must keep a heightened sense of awareness and be able to seek out any suspicious activity in their surroundings.
“We have to be able to look at a situation and know the right protocol and de-escalate it before it gets out of hand,” said Garza.
Throughout the week, the Marines were tasked with responding to different scenarios in which they would have to evaluate the situation and make a decision accordingly.
“The most common thing we see might be something along the lines of one civilian worker getting into an argument with another,” said Garza. “We also have to be aware of controlled areas and make sure that no one has a cell phone where they are not supposed to and what they can and can’t take pictures of.”
The company is scheduled to deploy later in the year along the east coast, where they will have to execute similar operations to that of the exercise.
“Because of this training, I believe when the Marines deploy, they will have a better idea of what to expect,” said Lazaruis.