Working F-35 Flexible Basing for the North Carolina-Based Marines


According to a November 18, 2021, story by LCpl Michele Clarke, 2nd MAW recently worked practiced F-35B operations working with a forward arming and refueling point.

The Marines are working to enhance their capabilities to operate the force from a variety of remote locations to support its capability to operate as an effective distributed force.

Subordinate units of 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing (MAW) conducted a demonstration of a forward arming and refueling point and air delivered ground refueling (ADGR), which are part of the expeditionary advanced base operations (EABO) and future operating concept at MCALF Bogue, North Carolina, Nov. 18, 2021.

The event was a demonstration of EABO concepts to illustrate the capabilities of 2nd MAW as a result of the Commandant of the Marine Corps’ force design. The demonstration marks the first occasion of ADGR of an F-35B on the East Coast, and the first time 2nd MAW has conducted F-35B operations at MCALF Bogue.

“One of the things that was unique today was it is the first time the F-35B [assigned to 2nd MAW], the Marine Corps variant, came to Bogue field in any capacity; and then in addition, we’re able to gain a lot of extra training value by conducting an ADGR, for the KC-130 crews as well as the F-35 ordnance Marines and pilots,” said Maj. Anthony Walters, a KC-130J pilot with Marine Aerial Refueler Transport Squadron (VMGR) 252.

Expeditionary advanced base operations is part of the Commandant of the Marine Corps’ force design 2030 concept to enable Marines to become even more mobile, lethal, and to make it harder for the enemy to detect them. The demonstration involved multiple units within 2nd MAW to showcase the capabilities to II Marine Expeditionary Force commanders and staff.

“The most important aspect of an event like we executed today at Bogue field is to inform and enable our future decision makers that came down to observe the event from MEF on how to employ the EABO concepts so they understand the mitigating factors and the timelines associated to better understand how that fits into their overall war plan,” said Walters.

In addition to being the first F-35 ADGR training event on the East Coast for 2nd MAW, the last time this event took place for Marine Corps F-35Bs was at the Weapons Tactics Instructor course at Marine Corps Air Station Yuma, Arizona. The training event and demonstration validated 2nd MAW’s capabilities and proficiency to execute Marine Corps aviation tasks in support of the Commandant’s vision of the future force and operating concepts.

The next book in our  Second Line of Defense Strategic Book Series which will appear in the first quarter of 2022 focuses on the USMC transformation process underway from 2007.

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