In an interview with Brigadier General Owens, the 2nd MEB commander noted that the French forces on the ground operated more than 80 miles dealing with the “enemy” to the South West of the insertion point. This meant that the French were operating nearly 4000 miles from their home port. And this really is one of the core points of the flexibility and capability of sea basing.
Owens provided this update on the French maneuver on the ground.
This was impressive as this was just D+2 and that a portion of it was opposed. Their live forces maneuvered the farthest from the landing beaches on D-Day, and that was just 20 mi from the beach (Camp Davis, near Holly Ridge). Our overland live maneuver was obviously limited by range constraints and DOT restrictions on the public highways (we did some of the latter but it had to be kept to a minimum).
In three videos in this posting, various aspects of the French engagement are highlighted.
The first is an official French MOD video which is in French with English subtitiles and provides a perspective on how the French participants viewed Bold Alligator 2012 and the role of seabasing.
The second provides an overview of the Mistral and a sense of what this ship is all about.
And the final video is about the LCAT, which is the latest French landing ship or connector. The USN and USMC were quite interested in seeing how it performed in Bold Alligator 2012
For our overview of the French in Bold Alligator see the following: