Marines Practice Urban Warfare in Beaufort - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports


Marines Practice Urban Warfare in Beaufort

Nearly 1,000 Beaufort Marines will be heading to Iraq in the next few months. But they'll be fighting a different kind of war in urban areas like Fallujah. Today the Marines were put through an exercise which taught things that aren't in any of their manuals. But they're operations that could save their lives when they're in Iraq.

For a few hours, Beaufort turned into a simulated battlefield, a training ground where local Marines learned new urban warfare techniques.

"Over there in Iraq, they're working in the urban environment," said Capt. Michael Spears. "Here in Beaufort, we're able to train in the urban environment."

Marines say this training is essential now that even convoy operations in Iraq are vulnerable. Something they haven't had to deal with before. "Convoys could run back and forth, supporting depots to bring them to the front lines. That was all secure. No need to escort," said Col. Bob Walsh of prior operations. "Convoys, as you look at Iraq, the terrorists are blended in with the civilians there. There is no front line."

Although this is just an exercise, it's what Marines are learning today that could save their lives in the future. Marines are learning how a convoy runs, coordination of air-ground support for the convoys, responses to an ambush, even dealing with casualties.

And most Marines, like GySgt. Willy Peterson, are taking this exercise seriously, because in a few months this training will become reality in Iraq. "I take this seriously because I'm going over there and I'll be taking convoys out," he said. "These Marines' lives are in my hands and we're going together and we'll be coming back together."

Reported by: Jaime Dailey,

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