MAG-12 integrates with ground combat element
Marine Aircraft Group 12 prepares to set off for exercise Forager Fury in Guam and the Common Wealth of the Northern Marianas Islands.
“Forager Fury is meant as a Marine Air Ground Task Force exercise, the focus on the air combat element,” said Col. Christopher J. Mahoney, MAG-12 Commanding Officer. “So, we are taking the view from a MAGTF perspective. We will integrate with the ground combat element on Tinian, the target range to the north, the refueling area on
Tinian, live ordnance training, urban close air support, offensive close air support on Guam and in addition air-to-air missile shoots, as well as engage surface targets.” The purpose of Forager Fury is like its counterpart, Geiger Fury, to exercise operational capabilities of MAG-12 in their given theater of operations.
MAG-12 is slated to repair another portion of the legendary runway that the Enola Gay launched from during World War II, and establish and construct a landing pad suited for the deployment and return of rotary wing aircraft.
“We met the combat standard, my goal is to repeat it,” said Mahoney. “Pro football teams do not go out, win one game, and expect to go to the Super Bowl, they win a lot of games and then go to the Super Bowl. So, with our eye on the Super Bowl, where ever it may be in our theater, or around the world, we are going to keep playing our games at a high level and meeting that standard. So, for Forager Fury, we will do a lot of similar things. We have made it a bit more complex this time, with the targeting, the engagements, with the inclusion of more of a ground combat element, and we will surge once again at a combat sortie rate, which is not easy. While I am not necessarily interested in beating the combat standard rate, I am more interested in meeting it repeatedly.”
Surge operations are slated to last longer in Forager Fury than during Geiger Fury.
“There will be eighty hours of continuous surge operations,” said Mahoney. “With hornets taking off, going to the objective area, expanding ordnance, coming back, refueling, re-arming and going back out again for that 80 hour period. We are going to have a combat sortie pace with about 36 to 40 sorties per squadron in the air. At the end of that, we will see what our strengths and weaknesses are and then start to train to our weaknesses and hone our strengths.”
With the deployment of MAG-12 to the Marianas, or any location around the world, their mission remains the same.