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News Around the Fleet

News | Aug. 22, 2022

3d Marine Littoral Regiment Participates in RIMPAC 22

By 1st Lt. Erin Scudder

U.S. Marines with the newly formed 3d Marine Littoral Regiment teamed up with service members from across the globe during Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) 2022, the world’s largest international maritime exercise, from June 29 to Aug. 4.

RIMPAC marked the first exercise featuring 3d MLR inclusive of all its subordinate units-- a milestone for Force Design 2030 efforts.

During the exercise, the MLR Headquarters established a combat operations center at Marine Corps Base Hawaii. A command and control element of the headquarters then displaced to Marine Corps Training Area Bellows to expand the MLR’s redundant and resilient communications network, enabling greater ability to rapidly changing conditions on the simulated battlefield. Additionally, the MLR integrated into joint kill webs to further develop joint tactics, techniques, and procedures.

“This year we focused on the digital interoperability and the integration of our people, processes, and systems across the joint and combined force as we continue to implement Force Design actions in the Pacific, as part of the Stand-in Force,” said Col. Timothy S. Brady, Jr., commanding officer, 3d Marine Littoral Regiment. “RIMPAC provided us an unprecedented opportunity to build a multinational foundation during training and experimentation.”

During RIMPAC, the MLR provided multi-domain awareness to the Combined Task Force, the Combined Force Maritime Component Command, and the Combined Force Air Component Command. “RIMPAC provided an invaluable opportunity to train with the Joint Force and alongside our allies and partners,” said Maj. Oryan Lopes, Current Operations Officer, 3d Marine Littoral Regiment. “Our combined capabilities enable us to operate effectively across the spectrum of military operations.”

The MLR, designed to operate in distributed locations throughout the first island chain, dispersed across three Hawaiian Islands during the exercise. The 3d Littoral Anti-Air Battalion established an expeditionary advanced base (EAB) with a sensor unit of employment aboard Pacific Missile Range Facility (PMRF), Barking Sands to enhance multi-domain awareness for the MLR and its higher headquarters. 3d Littoral Logistics Battalion established a logistics node at Kahuku Training Area to provide tactical logistics to the MLR. The 3d Littoral Combat Team established a command and control node at Marine Corps Base Hawaii. Finally, 1st Battalion, 12th Marines conducted a joint and partner Fire Support Coordination Exercise at Pohakuloa Training Area and established an EAB with a fires unit of employment at PMRF to facilitate combined-joint maritime force maneuver with ground-based precision fires. In the future, Bravo Battery from 1/12 will transfer to 3d MLR and form the Medium Missile Battery.

RIMPAC 22 culminated with a multinational amphibious demonstration alongside nine allied and partner nations, to include U.S. Marines from 7th Marines and 3d MLR. The 3d MLR conducted a naval strike missile raid, inserted by a U.S. Air Force C-17 Globemaster. This operation showcased the new MLR formation for the first time, integrated with the joint force and in support of combined-joint maritime force maneuver. U.S. Marines from 3d LAAB employed four Stinger surface-to-air missile teams to defend the local airspace while a security element from 3d LCT secured the EAB. Immediately following the demonstration, staff members from 3d MLR provided a capabilities brief and hosted static displays of current technologies for distinguished visitors of allied and partner forces to enhance their understanding of 3d MLR’s mission sets and equipment.

The MLR is composed of a Headquarters and Service Company, Communications Company, Long Range Unmanned Surface Vessel Company, Littoral Combat Team, Littoral Anti-Air Battalion, and Littoral Logistics Battalion. The 3d MLR is task-organized to act as part of the Stand-in-Force, disrupt the adversary in a contested littoral environment through reconnaissance, counter-reconnaissance, and sea denial operations in order to support the maritime campaign.

Twenty-six partner nations, 38 ships, three submarines, more than 170 aircraft, and 25,000 personnel participated in RIMPAC around the Hawaiian Islands and Southern California. The world’s largest international exercise, RIMPAC provided a unique training opportunity while fostering and sustaining cooperative relationships among participants critical to ensuring the safety of sea lanes and security on the world’s oceans. RIMPAC 2022 was the 28th exercise in the series that began in 1971.