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ComCam helps create training video

8 Jan 2010 | Lance Cpl. Andrew Thorburn

Early in the morning, under a pitch black sky, Marine instructors with the Combat Center’s Advisor Training Group headed out to Range 220 to film a training video for their students Dec. 18.

“The purpose of this video is to help train the new students on the right and wrong ways to work with other militaries,” said Gunnery Sgt. James Robertson, the academics and training chief for the ATG.

“We have taken video of students doing their tests before and then we show them the video so they can see their errors,” Robertson said.

Filming began shortly after first light with a meet and greet between the Marine advisors and their Afghan counterparts and continued by capturing examples of common situations students can expect to encounter when interacting with role players and foreign militaries.

Lance Cpl. Ricky Holt, a videographer with Combat Camera, filmed Marines interacting, correctly and incorrectly, with civilian role players posing as members of the Afghan National Army.

With the footage, we will be making a series of videos focusing on different advisory techniques, said Lt. Col. Dan Benz, the operations officer for the ATG.

The Marines and role players were not given scripts – only ideas of what to say and how to handle different situations, which added to the realism of the training.

“We are supposed to do things both the right and wrong way so the students can critique us,” said Capt. Richard Shinn, an instructor for the ATG. “They need to act normally and know mistakes will happen and handle them as they do.”

The ATG plans to implement the videos into their training curriculum upon completion.

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Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center Twentynine Palms