The dark night wouldn’t allow the human eye to see anything further than two feet ahead, but that didn’t stop the Marines of the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) from conducting their amphibious night raid on Ukibaru Island, Okinawa, Japan.
Through the darkness, Marines conducted amphibious night raid rehearsals in order to test maritime readiness, refine standard operating procedures and formations, and sustain proficiency in lethal combat maneuvers.
The raid was a part of the June sustainment training the 31st MEU was conducting in Japan, which was designed to build upon the skills of the unit.
During a typical raid, the forces are broken up into an assault element, which serves as the main effort, a security element, which provides blocking positions and a support-by-fire element providing suppressive machine gun fire for the assault element conducting the raid. Using night optics devices, First Platoon was the assault element, while other Marines served in the security and support-by-fire elements, respectively.
The 31st MEU is operating aboard ships of the America Amphibious Ready Group in the 7th fleet area of operations to enhance interoperability with allies and partners, and serve as a ready response force to defend peace and stability in the Indo-Pacific region.