British forces will be “taking on their comrades from the United States Marine Corps” in the Californian desert as they prepare for operations as part of a new task group, say the Royal Navy here.

According to a news release:

“A new high-readiness force, Littoral Response Group (South), is to be built around Taunton-based 40 Commando and will focus on the regions east of the Suez Canal, ready to respond to global events. To ensure the commando element of the group are ready for deployment next year, the marines must first complete Exercise Green Dagger in the Mojave Desert alongside the US and Netherlands Marine Corps.

The exercises across sun-scorched deserts will test the marines in a number of warfighting skills and their ability to work effectively with their Dutch counterparts who also form part of the LRG(S).”

Green Dagger will culminate in a ‘free play battle’ in which Dutch and British marines will work together against the might of the USMC to evaluate the effectiveness of each of the allied forces.

The exercises are taking place at the Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Centre at Twentynine Palms, which covers an area similar in size to Luxembourg in the Californian deserts.

“The plan over the coming weeks is to stress test this commando group and refresh key soldiering skills to ensure they are prepared for full operations. The response group – comprising around 500 British and 120 Dutch troops – is expected to be functional next year with the addition of amphibious ships and aircraft.”

You can read more here.

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David Steeper
1 month ago

What the Dutch Marines are going to be part of the LRG’s ? Never even considered that. Very happy but how will the politics work ? If we decide to do something kinetic to oh I don’t know the Iranians what happens if Dutch don’t ?

KPB
KPB
1 month ago
Reply to  David Steeper

I’m not sure they will form part of our particular concept, but interoperability with the Dutch Marines is nothing new. My Dad trained alongside them as part of 42Cdo back in the late-1960s. He was always amazed at the length of their hair and their propensity to put custard on every conceivable type of food whilst on RN ships.

David Steeper
1 month ago
Reply to  KPB

It’ll be interesting to see how far integration goes. Outside of NATO Article 5 woukd we go to war together ? There’s some similarity with French on Missiles and Dutch Navy. Politically we are absolutely not friends but on parts of military we co-operate. Pragmatism I guess.

SwindonSteve
SwindonSteve
1 month ago

Very interesting, I hadn’t heard previously that LSG(S) was going to contain any contribution from allies.

I thought it was going to be wholly sovereign, but having said that, UKCSG seems to be setting the tone with contributions from the Dutch and Americans.

I would think the northern counterpart will probably follow a similar format, with a UK lead and allied forces make up the numbers/filling in capability gaps.

Levi Goldsteinberg
Levi Goldsteinberg
1 month ago

Curious to know where this east-of-Suez LRG will be garrisoned. Could we assume Brunei? Or possibly Singapore or Darwin given the naval component?

SwindonSteve
SwindonSteve
1 month ago

Previous indications have suggested it will have its HQ in Oman I believe.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago

Duqm. Oman.

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
30 days ago

Just the HQ there or most/all of the LRG(S)? Where would the shipping and helos be based?

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
29 days ago
Reply to  Graham Moore

I assume at Duqm, not aware of finer details yet.

The British Army are also going to use Ras Madrakah as a BATUS replacement for armoured BGs and as an in theatre armoured group to complement the LRG. Duel hatting it in effect as we no longer possess enough armour for dedicated Canada based training.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago

Interesting. I had not heard of the LRG’s being anything other than sovereign.

Joe16
Joe16
30 days ago

Likewise.
It would make a lot more sense to me if some of our northern European neighbours wanted to be involved with LRG north, I’m not sure how much of a stake the Dutch have east of Suez…

chris stocken
chris stocken
1 month ago

I wonder if we will ever know the outcome of the “free play battle”?.

Andrew
Andrew
1 month ago
Reply to  chris stocken

I reckon the commandos will win at the tea drinking competition….

that guy
that guy
1 month ago

Well, we all know who’s winning the drinking contest!

Thomas
Thomas
29 days ago
Reply to  that guy

The only thing there is to do in Twentynine palms is drink…. So the Marines (American) will hold their own.