A war game exercise that deploys a battalion-size air, sea and ground assault is playing out across Marine Corps bases in Southern California this week. The exercise, which includes more than 1,000 Marines from the 1st Marine Division and more than 600 Marine aviators and their crews, is taking place at San Clemente Island, Marine Corps Air Station Miramar, Camp Pendleton and at the Marine Air Ground Combat Center Twentynine Palms. It combines the 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing’s “Winter Fury” exercise with the 1st Marine Division’s “Steel Knight” training. Both are held annually to prepare

Marines for worldwide threats and to sharpen their skills for upcoming deployments. But the combined exercise is the first in more than a decade, military officials say. “We are setting up a full command structure within the wing that will command and control all our assets flying in the air space that is real and virtual,” said Col. Michael Borgschulte, assistant Wing Commander for the 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing, which has units at Camp Pendleton, Miramar and Marine Corps Air Station Yuma in Arizona. “We are doing command and control integration with the 1st Marine Division.” READ MORE