Amphibious Roots and AirSea Battle

The Marine Corps and Navy plan to conduct exercise Bold Alligator 2012 early next year off the US East Coast to revitalize the fundamentals of amphibious operations, Marine Corps Lt. Gen. Dennis Hejlik, commander of Marine Corps Forces Command, told reporters Thursday in Washington, D.C. Provisionally planned for the first two weeks in February, it will be “the biggest amphibious exercise in the last 10 years,” he said. Bold Alligator will also be one of the first opportunities for the Marines to familiarize themselves with the new Air Force-Navy AirSea Battle concept, he said. AirSea Battle calls for closer integration of air and sea forces to overcome an enemy’s anti-access forces and project power at long range. “We will do some of the experimentation there and see if we can take that concept . . . and practicalize that,” said Hejlik. “What we are really looking at, along with that, is the assured access part, and that is a big part of AirSea [Battle].” Hejlik said it “is going to take some time” to incorporate AirSea Battle into the marines’ operations. “We didn’t get involved as a Marine Corps until January,” he said. (See also Navy release)