The Western Army, Japan Ground Self Defense Force (JGSDF), and U.S. Task Force 76/3 (TF 76/3) completed simulated operations in a bilateral coordination node as a part of exercise Keen Edge 24.

Keen Edge is a biennial Japan Joint Staff and U.S. Indo-Pacific Command-level exercise conducted this year by the combined-joint force in various locations throughout Japan and Hawaii. III Marine Expeditionary Force (MEF) and Commander, U.S. Seventh Fleet, employed TF 76/3 forward from Okinawa, Japan, for the first time during this year’s iteration of the exercise.

More than 300 JGSDF service members and U.S. Marines and Sailors worked together during the regularly scheduled command post exercise to build upon professional relationships, increase readiness, and strengthen bilateral coordination procedures, according to Col. Bill Matory, 3d Marine Expeditionary Brigade (MEB) operations officer.

“Task Force 76/3 is postured to support real-world crises or contingencies in the Indo-Pacific region, and this exercise gave us the opportunity to rehearse our quick-deployment flexibility,” said Navy Capt. Emily Royse, ESG-7 operations officer. “Our Sailors and Marines working together in the same organization to practice naval integration is an exciting opportunity to refine concepts for the entire Navy and Marine Corps.”

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