ABU DHABI – Intrepid Maven 23.3 concluded in the United Arab Emirates on May 22. The exercise included more than 100 U.S. Marines and Sailors, alongside partnering elements of the United Arab Emirates Armed Forces, who conducted infantry-based close-quarters combat training, live-fire close-air support exercises, and expeditionary airfield operations at several training locations throughout the country.
“Planning and training with the Emiratis in their country during Intrepid Maven definitely made both of our teams better, and I think it made our partnership stronger” said Maj. Dan Ealy, Officer-in-Charge of Task Force 51/5th Marine Expeditionary Brigade’s Exercise Control Group (ECG). “It was really great getting to work with such a professional partner, and it gave us a chance to practice skills that are vital to our preparedness as a crisis-response task force, like planning and operating in a foreign and expeditionary environment,” Ealy concluded. “The level of professionalism the Emiratis displayed made our bilateral operations smooth and maximized the time we had to train”.
Task Force 51/5’s ECG provided overall command-and-control of the exercise, while also managing the logistical and administrative actions required to support multiple subordinate elements – these included elements from the task force’s administrative, logistics, communications, force protection, and operations directorates. The larger force of U.S. Marines supporting Intrepid Maven 23.3 consisted of a detachment of active-duty Marines from Marine Corps Forces Command (MARFORCOM), as well as detachments of Marine reservists from 3rd Air Naval Gunfire Liaison Company and Marine Air Control Group 48. Partnering elements of the United Arab Emirates Armed Forces included the Presidential Guard and Joint Aviation Command.
Intrepid Maven 23.3 marks the second time USCENTCOM has conducted an Intrepid Maven exercise in the United Arab Emirates, and the seventh time Marines have held the exercise in the Middle East. Exercise Intrepid Maven is a U.S. Marine Corps Forces Central Command-conceptualized and -implemented exercise series, designed in late 2021, with the first iteration having occurred in Jordan in March 2022. The series, to include IM 23.3, is designed to strengthen partnerships, produce training opportunities, contribute to interoperability, and to improve conditions for regional security. Episodic in nature, Intrepid Maven, which occurs with anywhere from one to any of a number of partner nations during each iteration, is a force deployment-tailored training series designed to demonstrate persistence in partnering; to prepare for the demands of a volatile and fluid AOR; to conduct unit-level training in new and challenging areas, spaces and facilities; and to demonstrate service ability to project forces to meet emergent requirements, all with the objective of gaining and maintaining unit readiness, deterring malicious adversary intent and demonstrating global responsiveness for crisis-response and contingencies.