African Lion, the annual training exercise between Morocco and U.S., is underway right now. The exercise is led by Marine Forces Africa and sponsored by U.S. Africa Command. The training includes command post, live-fire and maneuvering, peace keeping operations, an intelligence capacity building seminar, aerial refueling/low-level flight training, as well as medical and dental assistance projects.
Here’s a recap so far, by the numbers, with links to related stories and photos.
The first year of African Lion was 2008. Each year, African Lion has been hosted by Morocco, which has about 32 million people.
This year, more than 1,000 U.S. military personnel, including about 800+ Marines, and 900 Royal Moroccan soldiers are working together during the 10-day exercise.
To support the mission, U.S. Marines offloaded 169 pieces of rolling stock assets in under 12 hours at the Port of Agadir.
A four-day Intelligence Capacity Building Workshop helped prepare senior staff officers from both countries who will participate in the Command Post Exercise portion.
Marines are using a Tactical Water Purification System, which weighs 10,000 pounds, to purify approximately 10,000 gallons of water a day by pumping it through a series of filters. The water supports the soldiers involved in the training exercises.
Four Rapid Response Kits allowed the military to get up and communicating quickly.
About 70 medical and dental staff will help treat 1,000 local patients daily as part of the humanitarian civil assistance project of African Lion.
On a quieter and tragic note, we can not overlook the two Marines who were killed and two Marines who were severely injured in an MV-22 Osprey crash earlier this week during African Lion 12. Our thoughts go out to the families. The crash is currently under investigation.
African Lion 12 ends April 18, 2012.
For more on African Lion, visit the U.S. Africa Command website.