Twentynine Palms, Calif. -- MARINE CORPS AIR GROUND COMBAT CENTER TWENTYNINE PALMS, Calif. -– U.S. Marines and Sailors from around the Marine Corps called for “white flags”, indicating the conclusion of Marine Air-Ground Task Force (MAGTF) Warfighting Exercise (MWX) 2-23 at Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center (MCAGCC), Twentynine Palms, California, Feb. 26, 2023.
MWX is the culminating event of Service Level Training Exercise (SLTE), where two regiment-sized forces battle for control of over 761,600 acres of land in the largest unscripted wargame the U.S. Marine Corps has to offer.
SLTE is a series of separate exercises, to include Integrated Training Exercise, Adversary Force Exercise, Mountain Warfare Training Exercise, and MAGTF Distributed Maneuver Exercise.
MWX 2-23 is a full-scale force-on-force all-domain fight that drives the participating MAGTF units to be innovative and adaptive to our nations’ ever evolving adversaries by challenging service members to fight against a free-thinking adversary with similar capabilities in a force-on-force, free-play environment.
The latest iteration of MWX was different in that 3d Marine Littoral Regiment (MLR), the first MLR to take part in SLTE 2-23 was among the participating units in the exercise in accordance with Force Design 2030. The other main participants during MWX included 7th Marine Regiment (Reinforced) as well as various other units from MCAGCC and I Marine Expeditionary Force.
3d MLR was activated on March 3, 2022, on Marine Corps Base Hawaii. The MLR is optimized for littoral maneuver in the Indo-Pacific area of operations.
During the execution of MWX 2-23, Marine Air Ground Task Force Training Command (MAGTFTC) sought to provide a training venue where both the Stand-In-Force and Assault Force are challenged across all domains of the operating environment. This includes facing capabilities that the Marine Corps is most likely to encounter in a conflict with a peer adversary.
“The MLR acted as a Stand-In Force, holding key maritime terrain, using their reconnaissance elements to execute strikes against targets to ensure freedom of naval operations,” said U.S. Marine Corps Capt. Ryan Caldwell, emerging technology officer, Tactical Training and Exercise Control Group, MAGTFTC, MCAGCC.
Forces must not only contend with each other, but they must also operate alongside civilian role-players throughout Range 220 or in the force-on-force scenario. Participating role-players' simulate the relationship between local residents and occupying forces in real-world scenarios.
During the exercise, commanders experience the adversity that comes with a distributed fight, straining supply lines, and operating deep within an adversary’s weapons engagement zone.
“We’re able to create a multidomain environment here on Twentynine Palms that gives Marines the most realistic training they’re going to get before they deploy,” said Caldwell.
The various exercises hosted by MAGTFTC are designed to prepare the MAGTF to respond to crises and conflicts around the globe by increasing their ability to integrate actions across the full range of military operations.