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NEWS | April 19, 2024

Contact Front: 5th ANGLICO Trains for Crisis Response

By 1st Lt. Michelle Lin, III MEF Information Group

5th Air Naval Gunfire Liaison Company, III Marine Expeditionary Force Information Group, is known for its fire support and liaison capabilities with joint, allied, and multinational forces whilst maintaining a myriad of combat and tactical air control party training for competition and conflict. With its strategic location, based out of Camp Hansen, Okinawa, Japan, 5th ANGLICO is focused on readiness to respond to crisis or contingency in the Western Pacific by implementing small unmanned aerial system operators and refining maritime target acquisitioning. Despite being not many but much, as its motto, non multa sed multum, states, 5th ANGLICO maximizes its resources and capabilities to closely integrate with joint and partner forces. When not practicing close air support and calling for fire, 5th ANGLICO Marines hone infantry fundamentals, ensuring they are self-sufficient and self-sustaining by increasing their expertise on the weapons they will take with them to war.

To contribute to a safe and prosperous Indo-Pacific, 5th ANGLICO maintains a high-degree of combat proficiency. 5th ANGLICO routinely plans and executes several unit-level exercises, rehearsing their ability to rapidly deploy to execute a mission at a moment’s notice anywhere in the Indo-Pacific, and honing their ability to gather and share information in an austere, communications-degraded environment around the small islands chains around Japan and neighboring countries.

5th ANGLICO conducting the Marine Corps Combat Marksmanship Program on Camp Hansen, enables Marines to maintain weapon proficiency and marksmanship by engaging targets in a competitive environment with their primary and secondary weapon systems.

The Marines shoot M4 carbines and M18 pistols, focusing on speed, efficiency, and accuracy while maneuvering behind barricades by engaging at varying distances, replicating realistic engagement in urban terrain and close quarters combat with speed reloads, controlled pairs against moving targets, box drills, and other courses of fire. In a future conflict, warfighters will engage the enemy from unknown distances and multiple domains; this training allows them to gauge these distances to be able to fire more accurately.

“The Marines at 5th ANGLICO are tasked with tackling a non-standard and evolving problem-set in preparation for potential crisis in the Western Pacific. The necessity to learn and develop new joint fires procedures, utilize new fires and communication equipment, and operate in areas with critical partner forces in the Western Pacific has required initiative, maturity, and performance of our Marines well above what is usually expected for rank and experience,” says Maj Magnussen, the operations officer for 5th ANGLICO. “Our Marines have rose to the occasion and led to our current success with the mission and continued development of the ANGLICO’s ability to forward deploy within the Western Pacific on short notice, in response to crisis, to enable joint force and partner fires with assured command and control, resilient communication and multi-domain awareness.”

In May, 5th ANGLICO’s small unmanned aerial system team will take their training to the Jungle Warfare Training Center at Camp Gonsalves, Okinawa, which is the largest U.S. training facility in Okinawa, and the premier jungle warfare center in the Marine Corps. Areas in the Western Pacific which are mountainous jungles thick with dense vegetation and venomous snakes warrant this training where the Marines might find themselves in a potential conflict.

The Marines will conduct combat, security, and ambush patrols with their rifles through thick vegetation while maintaining a low-signature and small footprint, land navigation, and rappelling and suspension techniques through obstacles. Expanding their combat mindset, they will build upon small unit cohesion and communication to friendly forces about enemy engagement.

The ”J”- lingo for jungle- is a humbling environment, and nothing like home with dangerous flora and fauna like habu snakes rampant in the area. The torrential rain pours over the training area throughout the night. The jungle climate and terrain slow operations, complicates communications, and even increases the chance for illness.

At times it is not always about integrating new capabilities but rather focusing in on tactical skills which demonstrate 5th ANGLICO’s readiness and lethality in a contested space.

Successful stand-in force operations are enabled by synchronizing complementary capabilities with allies and partners to provide a unified response to potential threats in the Indo-Pacific. 5th ANGLICO trains to be proficient in both tactical and operational environments to meet mission demands, and adaptable to show the partner force the broad capabilities that its detachments bring to the fight.