MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP BUTLER, Okinawa, Japan --
U.S. Marine Corps and the Japan Ground Self Defense Force will conduct bilateral field training exercise Forest Light 17-1 from March 5 - 17 at Soumagahara training area in Gunma prefecture, Japan.
Forest Light is a routine, semi-annual exercise conducted by U.S. and Japanese forces in order to strengthen interoperability and combined capabilities in defense of Japan, and increase combined readiness for response to crises throughout the Indo-Asia-Pacific region.
Elements from III Marine Expeditionary Force will join the Japan Ground Self Defense Force to enhance bilateral military relations and improve both individual and unit-level skills.
U.S. forces participating include a Marine Corps infantry battalion with 3rd Marine Division, and two Marine Corps squadrons with 1st Marine Aircraft Wing. Approximately 600 Marines and Sailors will be supported by CH-53E Super Stallion helicopters and MV-22B Osprey tiltrotor aircraft. The Marines, Sailors and aircraft are all forward-deployed to III MEF based in Okinawa, Japan. Japanese forces participating include a Japan Ground Self Defense Force infantry regiment with 12th Brigade, Eastern Army.
Prior to exercise commencement, questions regarding U.S. training and personnel should be referred to III MEF Public Affairs at IIIMEFPAO@usmc.mil. Questions regarding JGSDF training and personnel should be referred to 12th Brigade Public Affairs at adminpr-
Imagery and video will be posted for public release at www.dvidshub.net/unit/III-MEF and on the following social media platforms:
U.S. Marine Corps:
www.facebook.com/IIIMEF www.instagram.com/iiimef_marines www.twitter/iiimef
Japan Ground Self Defense Force: https://www.facebook.com/jgsdf.fp/ www.twitter.com/Japan_GSDF