Sept. 3, 2015 —
QATAR (Sept. 2, 2015) — U.S. Marines with the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit’s Female Engagement
Team brought their unique skills and capabilities to share tactics and
build interoperability with the Qatari Internal Security Forces Aug
The Female Partner Force Engagement Team exchange included
participants from 15th MEU FET Marines and Special Operations Command
The all-female exchange included discussion and
demonstration of tactics, techniques, and procedures on a wide variety
of topics including emergency medical care, small-arms handling, and
personal security detachment operations.
The MEU’s FET, led by
Capt. Ashele Denny, is comprised of female Marines from a range of
different military occupational specialties from the 15th MEU and its
subordinate elements. These Marines were pulled together to share
different skills with all-female forces who can’t train with male U.S.
military members due to cultural boundaries.
The FPFET executed
the subject matter expert exhchange with the Qatari Internal Security
Forces Female VIP Protection Unit, or QFVPU. This was the second
iteration of this type of training, and they exchanged tactics,
techniques and procedures with the QISF.
“Qatar FPFET SMEE 15-1
is intended to strengthen the relationships established during SMEE 14-1
and pave the way for continued cooperation between the QISF and US
Armed Forces,” said Navy Lieutenant Kathryn Murphy, the FET co-lead.
“This sort of exchange provides the opportunity for partner nations and
US Armed Forces to improve current TTPs and their abilities to combat
The wide range of capabilities and expertise within the FPFET was the key to a successful exchange.
FPFET is composed of female US service members from all branches,
billets and backgrounds who are considered experts in the skill sets
covered in the exchanges,” Murphy said. “The joint aspect of this team
provides the best opportunity for recruiting the most qualified women to
represent the United States in a region where professionalism and
dedication to duty are paramount.”
During the two-week exchange
they covered how the US Armed Forces set up their medical kits, conduct
CPR, and perform immediate medical care to wounded personnel. They also
spent two days on the range shooting the SIG Sauer P226 pistol and M4
service rifle. Their final days were spent exchanging personal security
“It was interesting to compare and contrast
our different tactics; in some areas we had a lot of similarities but
others were very different,” said Cpl. Alexandra Beggio, a field radio
operator with Medium Marine Tiltrotor Squadron 161 (Reinforced), 15th
MEU, and a member of the FPFET.
“For example, a lot of our PSD
formations are very similar but the way we react to different situations
differ. We definitely all got something out of it; it made us think
outside the box and look at different ways to do things.”
types of exchanges are essential for the U.S. Armed Forces to keep
expanding their abilities as well as relationships with other forces.
relationships with partner nations has become an essential element in
[combating violent extremism]," said a SOCCENT FET member. "The FPFET is
a critical component of this mission in the Central Command area of
responsibility because it provides the vehicle that enables the US Armed
Forces to bridge the cultural divide with our Middle Eastern
counterparts through engagement and SMEEs with their all-female forces."
The lessons learned from each SMEE also provide key takeaways
that can be applied to future engagements and improve future evolutions.
The FPFET looks forward to the next potential engagement with the QFVPU
to continue to expand and enhance their tactics and build their
relationship. The subsequent cultural exchange fosters understanding and
respect among the participants, forming a linchpin for continued