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Marine Rapid Response Force Deploying to Spain

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Cincinnatus:
The first of 500 Marines have begun deploying to Spain as part of a new rapid reaction force to respond to threats against U.S. citizens, government personnel or installations in Africa.

The new task force is based at Moron Air Base in southern Spain, which provides quick access especially to northern Africa, where security concerns have grown since the September 2012 attack on a U.S. government facility in Benghazi, Libya, a Pentagon official told CNN.

Deployment began Wednesday

When fully operational, the unit will be required to be airborne within six hours of receiving orders, providing the type of rapid response that the Pentagon says was not possible during the Benghazi attack. Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans died during the assault at the U.S. mission and CIA annex.

The Marine unit will have the job of providing protection for embassies and diplomatic compounds under attack or receiving threats; protecting U.S. citizens; rescuing downed pilots; and assisting other elements of the U.S. military in the event of a need to evacuate American citizens, the official said. He declined to be identified because much of the group's work has not yet been publicly discussed by the Marine Corps.

Spain provided final approval for the unit's presence Friday. The full 500-strong team, which is to be in place within 30 days, will include 225 Marines equipped for ground combat along with intelligence and communications specialists, plus another 225 personnel to man and maintain the six V-22 Osprey aircraft and two C-130 refueling aircraft that make up the aviation component of the unit.

The refueling aircraft will allow the Osprey to fly greater distances without landing.

Obvious response to the failure to provide security at Benghazi. Bit late, but better than nothing.

http://security.blogs.cnn.com/2013/04/25/u-s-marine-rapid-response-force-deploying-to-spain-base/

Ford289HiPo:

--- Quote from: Cincinnatus on April 26, 2013, 03:46:10 PM ---

When fully operational, the unit will be required to be airborne within six hours of receiving orders, providing the type of rapid response that the Pentagon says was not possible during the Benghazi attack.

--- End quote ---

This makes me wonder......

1. Why not use the airborne unit in Brindisi?  They are already there and the distances aren't all that different.
2. I guess that it's too late to reconsider all those bases in the Med region that we closed back in the 90's. [ahem...Brindisi...]
3. Marines based on the ground? Why not on a ship in the Med?
4. 6 hours? Way to long to wait if you're they guy being shot at. In Germany during the Cold War, we were required to be at our border defense positions in two hours after an alert.

Just thoughts............

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