As part of the Korean Marine Exchange Program 14-8 (KMEP 14-8), the ROK and U.S. Marines executed live-fire training June 18 at the Susungri Range in Pohang, Republic of Korea, according to a release from the Marines.
KMEP 14-8 is a combined, small-unit training exercise that enhances the combat readiness and interoperability of ROK and U.S. Marine Corps forces.
The Marines fired both the M2 .50-caliber Browning machine gun and the M240B medium machine gun from the gunner seats of moving Humvees.
“It’s really easy for them to fire the guns from a tripod static on the ground,” U.S. Marine Staff Sgt. Eric J. Ellenberger said in the release. “You add movement on uneven terrain and they see how hard it is to manipulate a weapon system.”
In addition to the machine guns fired during the mobile training, Marines shot the MK19 40 mm automatic grenade launcher and the M249 squad automatic weapon from static positions. This was the first time many ROK Marines experienced U.S. weapons systems, according to ROK Marine Lance Cpl. Choong-Hyun Shin, a special guard team member with Military Police Company, 1st ROK Marine Division.
“At first I was very anxious to use the big machine guns,” Shin said in the release. “With the help from the U.S. Marines and their thorough explanations of the weapons, it ended up being a very fun and exciting experience, not just for me, but for all of the ROK Marines.”