Greek and U.S. Forces Increase Interoperability

STUTTGART, Germany - About 150 U.S. Marines and 150 Greek military personnel
concluded exercise Alexander the Great 2018 (ATG 18), in Volos, Greece,
today.

The exercise began Jan. 15. ATG 18 was a bi-lateral security cooperation
training exercise involving Hellenic Marines from the 32nd Marine Brigade,
and U.S. Marines from the Black Sea Rotational Force 17.2.

"Alexander the Great was especially important because it marked the renewal
of complex large-scale field exercises between the U.S. Marine Corps and
Hellenic Armed Forces," said U.S. Ambassador to the Hellenic Republic
Geoffrey Pyatt. "We view Greece as a pillar of stability in the Eastern
Mediterranean and Southeastern Europe."

The exercise increased interoperability between the Hellenic Armed Forces
and the USMC, reassuring allies and partner nations, while improving
readiness and reinforcing regional relationships. Hellenic and U.S. Marines
combined forces to conduct tactical field exercises and a command post
training. The exercise included infantry, tanks, armored personnel vehicles,
anti-armor weapons, mortars, artillery, attack helicopters, and fighter
jets.

"Working with the USMC was quite a great experience. They have the will and
the spirit of cooperating and assisting each other in order to achieve our
goals," said Greek Major Konstantinos Rammatas, Operations Officer, 32nd
Marine Brigade.

"The most rewarding part is to witness how quickly the Greek and the U.S.
Armed Forces were able to begin working together across all war-fighting
functions, whether it was the deployment into Greece from Romania, then
combining companies together with Greek Marines and the United States
Marines, and their ability to do what they did today and conduct a company
live-fire range with combined arms and tanks," said Captain Shane Cooley,
Logistics Officer, Black Sea Rotational Force 17.2.

ATG 18 was conducted in two phases. The first phase was a company
force-on-force over a three day period where they did company attacks
against each other on a common objective. The second phase was a company
live-fire maneuver range where forces had combined arms that included close
air support, artillery and maneuvering with tanks.

U.S. European Command is committed to maintaining and strengthening the
United States' close relationship with Greece, as well as its relationship
with NATO allies and regional partners.

We stand together to support a Europe that is both free and at peace.

--30--

U.S. European Command is one of two U.S. forward-deployed geographic
combatant commands whose area of focus spans across Europe, portions of Asia
and the Middle East, the Arctic and Atlantic oceans. The command is
comprised of more than 60,000 military and civilian personnel and is
responsible for U.S. defense operations, relations with NATO and 51
countries. For more information about U.S. European Command, visit
http://www.eucom.mil/.

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