As Cooperation Afloat Readiness and Training (CARAT) Indonesia drew to a close, the Marines aboard USS GERMANTOWN break down their rifles, scrub their nylon tents, and perform maintenance on the vehicles that took them to the Indonesian shores.
While living ashore for five days, they participated in various exercises with their Indonesian counterparts, building trust and increasing interoperability between the Marines of both countries.
Maj. Ben Reid, commander of the Marines’ landing force during CARAT Indonesia, said:
We had different units without previous relationships and had only a month and a half to plan together before CARAT Indonesia. By the end, we are all one team and our ability to adapt and win really showed here.
During CARAT Indonesia, American forces worked with their Indonesian counterparts to enhance amphibious warfare tactics, train on field maneuvers, simulate humanitarian relief scenarios, and share field survival skills. The partner nations worked together on topics including beach surveys, water desalination, and even which local species are safe for human consumption in survival situations.
Several beach landings took place during the exercise as well. A few miles off the beach, the Indonesian amphibious ship KRI MAKASSAR, launched their landing craft while the U.S. amphibious ship, USS GERMANTOWN, launched their landing force as well. It took detailed coordination between multiple units to coordinate such a complex bilateral beach assault.
As CARAT Indonesia drew to a close, both the Indonesian and American Marines took away new skills and knowledge to improve future bilateral missions such as humanitarian aid and disaster relief, the most frequently exercised mission in this typhoon-prone region.
Image: US Navy