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Marine Corps News

MCMAP prepares Mongolians for future

September 3, 2003; Submitted on: 04/21/2005 04:28:42 PM ; Story ID#: 2003940119

By Cpl. Michael D. Darbouze, MCB Camp Butler



ULAANBAATAR, Mongolia (September 3, 2003) -- Instructors from the Marine Corps Martial Arts Program (MCMAP) Far East have been training with servicemembers of the Mongolia Armed Forces (MAF) in support of Khaan Quest '03 since August 18.

The instructors, during the 1st phase of the bilateral and interoperability exercise, have been using the structure of MCMAP to help them train the MAF in non-commissioned officer (NCO) development and to acquire techniques that will be useful to them during peace keeping operations.

Master Sgt. Shane T. Franklin, staff NCO in charge, MCMAP Far East, said MCMAP is just the right program to help the Mongolian Army develop a stronger corps of NCOs.

"MCMAP is about developing the overall Marine, and it's about being a Marine," said the 4th degree black belt, Marine Corps martial arts instructor trainer. "We aren't just teaching martial art physical skills, but we are also reinforcing leadership and Corps value development. The MCMAP training encompasses so much more than just martial arts: continuum of force, rules of engagement, conduct, weapons handling, safety, leadership...it encompasses all the different fields."

The Marine Corps made a good choice by sending a MCMAP team to conduct the training on leadership, physical ability and martial arts for the 1st phase added Franklin, a San Antonio native.

Staff Sgt. Brantley E. Friend, 2nd degree black belt instructor trainer, Marine Corps martial arts, MCMAP Far East, said he feels the Mongolians will gain a great deal of knowledge from the overall training they are receiving.

"I think (MAF) will benefit from the NCO development portion of training," said the Winder, Ga. native. "The Mongolians rely heavily on their officers. They are starting to realize and understand what the staff NCOs and NCOs do in the Marine Corps. I believe they are going to start implementing it more with their military. They will also gain from the physical techniques we teach them that they can use during their peace keeping operations."

The MAF is currently deploying a company-sized element to Iraq to assist the United States in maintaining control within Iraq.

Franklin said they are also teaching the Mongolian servicemembers Marine Corps martial arts techniques, in conjunction with the classes on NCO development and other theory based classes, to help them with the duties they may be performing in Iraq.

"At this stage in the Mongolian Army, I think MCMAP is primarily going to provide them techniques that they can use in their peace keeping operations," Franklin said. "We are providing them with non-lethal techniques that they can use in controlling individuals. We are also providing them an example of how to use physical techniques to reinforce mental and character development."

Capt. Javahlanbayar Dondogdorj, training officer, Unit 089, Mongolian Army, said he has enjoyed training with the Marines.

"I especially enjoyed the martial arts techniques that have been showing us," Dondogdorj said through an interpreter. "I liked the techniques and joint manipulation the most."

The martial arts techniques don't only provide the MAF with necessary skills for peace keeping operations, but they also reinforce the classes that they have been receiving throughout the training cycle added Franklin.

The Mongolian servicemembers have received a vast amount of knowledge while training with the Marine instructors, but the Marines have learned some things as well.

"I think the Mongolian wrestling is different," said Friend, a former free style wrestler. "It is impressive to see that almost every male I've seen so far is wrestling on the side when they have free time. You don't see that to often in the states. The rules (of Mongolian wrestling) are slightly different (than free style wrestling), but overall I think the Mongolia wrestling is a pretty good program."

Franklin, a 4th Dan (black belt rank) in Shorin Ryu (Okinawan karate), said he liked one of the warm up exercises the Mongolian servicemembers introduced to them during the physical training portion of the 1st phase.

"I like the 16 count exercise they perform," said the Shorin Ryu instructor. "I am thinking about incorporating it into my warm up exercise for the class I instruct back in Okinawa."

Franklin said Khaan Quest '03 is a great experience for both fighting forces, and all involved will be stronger for participating in the exercise.

"By going in and providing joint training and educational development, we increase the interoperability of the Marine Corps and the host nation on any operation that may occur in the future," Franklin said.
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