US Marines and Sailors of the 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit special operations capable MEU(SOC) embarked on the San Antonio-class amphibious transport dock USS Mesa Verde and concluded exercise Northern Coasts 2023, a multinational naval exercise series in the Baltic Sea region.
“Our forward-deployed posture and participation in Exercise Northern Coasts 2023 highlighted our warfighting readiness, flexibility, and operational capabilities to our Allies and Partners participating in this exercise,” said Lt. Col. Josef Wiese, executive officer of the 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit and Officer-in-Charge of the Marines embarked on the USS Mesa Verde. “The Marines and Sailors with the 26th MEU(SOC) showcased their ability to integrate with German Sea Battalion Marines, Italian San Marco Brigade Marines, members of the Latvian National Guard, and U.S. Army Special Operations Forces, further strengthening our interdependence with regional partners while showcasing the interoperability of the 26th MEU(SOC) with Joint Forces and our Allies and Partners within the USEUCOM area of responsibility."
This year’s participants in the exercise included: Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Poland, Sweden, and the United States.
The exercise began 4 September with the onload of the German Sea Battalion Marine onboard the Mesa Verde in order to execute an integrated Rapid Response Planning Process cycle for an amphibious assault at the beach in Ventspils.
“Exercise Northern Coast 2023 offered the logistical team a unique training experience, supporting over 400 personnel with the necessary supplies, equipment, vehicles and transportation requirements for multiple cities in Latvia,” said 1st. Lt. Wesley Greene, Logistics Officer, Battalion Landing Team 1/6, 26th MEU(SOC), embarked on the USS Mesa Verde. “This was a great training environment, and opportunity to fully integrate our MEU(SOC) capabilities with the host nations logistical requirements and demonstrating our ability to accomplish transportation requirements, via Air, Land, or Sea,” Greene concluded.