The Royal Marines provide key elements of the United Kingdom’s Joint Rapid Reaction Force. The forces assigned to this JRRF maintain a high readiness and can be deployed for contingency operations everywhere in the world; they can also be employed independently based on national interests or as part of a multinational intervention.
The mission spectrum of the JRRF ranges from providing support after humanitarian crises to conducting high intensity war-fighting operations. Included in this range is the execution of Non-combatant Evacuation Operations (NEO) aimed at rescuing threatened British citizens abroad. In May and June this Royal Marines took part in Exercise STORM TIDE III in Belgium in order to train for the execution of an NEO conducted by a multinational force.
31st of May, 2016, 13:35, Kortrijk Wevelgem Airport. The noise inside the C-130H Hercules transport aircraft of 15 Wing Luchttransport of the Belgian Air Force, crammed with Royal Marines from B Company of 40 Commando, is deafening. The aircraft has just touched down on the runway of the airport and the cockpit crew is slamming on the brakes in order to bring it to a rapid halt.
While still on the move the rear ramp of the plane is lowered then, as the Hercules comes to a halt,the ramp is dropped fully. Inside the plane the Commandos now scramble onto their feet, shoulder their bergens and begin to rush down the ramp…
To read all of Carl Schulze’s report see the
October 2016 issue of COMBAT & SURVIVAL Magazine,
which went on sale in both print and digital formats today.