MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. (WNCT) – Marines from 10th Marine Regiment (10th Marines), 2d Marine Division (2d MARDIV), supported by 2d Marine Aircraft Wing (2d MAW), conducted a highly dynamic and visual training event aboard Camp Lejeune on Wednesday.
“Rolling Thunder 21.2” was a live-fire, artillery-centric, training exercise designed to assess 10th Marines’ ability to employ precision artillery fire in a dynamic, rapidly-evolving training scenario.
This portion of the overall Rolling Thunder exercise places an increased emphasis on 10th Marines’ ability to maneuver and employ artillery assets in a distributed, littoral, offensive campaign against a peer threat in a contested, multi-domain environment.
The training also extensively incorporates some of the new operating concepts outlined in the 38th Commandant’s Planning Guidance, as well as his Force Design 2030 directive.
This complex and movement-reliant exercise is made possible in large part by heavy-lift helicopter support provided by 2d MAW. Rolling Thunder 21.2 ultimately increases 2d MARDIV’s capabilities and lethality as a warfighting organization, while also testing on, and training to, the future operating concepts that 10th Marines would employ in a contested littoral environment.
Heliborne artillery raids require unique and extensive planning in order to be successfully and safely accomplished. Raids like this involve rapidly moving an entire artillery unit, including their Howitzer gun tubes, to an often austere and always expeditionary firing positions, executing fire missions, followed by immediately withdrawing from the location from which they fired. In this case, transportation for the artillery unit will be provided entirely by heavy-lift helicopters.