U.S. Marines, French Gendarmes conduct crowd and riot control training

U.S. Marines, French Gendarmes conduct crowd and riot control training

Molotov cocktails explode and tear gas fill the streets as U.S. Marines from Special Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Force Crisis Response–Africa and French gendarmes with Mobile Gendarmerie Armored Group try to control a crowd of rioters in a city street.

That is how the scenario played out as the Marines and gendarmes trained together in crowd and riot control techniques at National Gendarmerie Training Center in St. Astier, France, from Dec. 1 to 5, 2014.

The Gendarmerie, like the Marines of SPMAGTF-Crisis Response–Africa, are called to locations of instability to restore peace and protect national interests abroad. The idea to have the Marines and Gendarmes train together came about approximately 10 years ago. Both are called by their nations to reinforce embassies in the face of a threat or an event of crisis.

During the multi-day event, the Marines and gendarmes shared historical lessons learned, trained in convoy escort and riot control procedures, conducted live-fire training, and built esprit through combined obstacle courses. The training culminated with a scenario that simulated the Marines and gendarmes conducting a partnered mission responding to a crisis in a foreign country, protecting the U.S. and French embassies, and conducting crowd and riot control.

“The facilities and training at St. Astier offered a unique experience that we are unable to replicate on Morón Air Base,” said Capt. Brian Green, the exercise officer in charge for SPMAGTF Crisis Response–Africa. “The ability to utilize rubber projectiles, Molotov cocktails, and CS gas during a mock riot brought a higher sense of realism to the training. The French gendarmes and U.S. Marines definitely built a lasting relationship that will continue to grow through further training in the future and will be proven strong if called to work together in Africa.”

The interoperability gained though the training evolution was invaluable as the two units may work together in the future. The exercise allowed the Marines to gain greater knowledge of non-lethal tactics, techniques and procedures while enhancing interoperability with the French Gendarmerie and strengthening the U.S. partnership with France.

Read more: http://www.dvidshub.net/news/149904...t-control-training#.VIqPNRCE-eM#ixzz3LfDD9EQl

The Gendarmerie, like the USMC, is in charge of protecting embassies, especially in areas of tension hence this new link between the two units. The Gendarme have experience of working in war zones and have been deployed to Kosovo, Côte d'Ivoire, AFG and CAR in recent years.

Another iteration of that joint FRA/US crowd control training has recently taken place in Saint-Astier, France.

U.S. Marines with Special-Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Force Crisis Response-Africa trained alongside the Gendarmerie, at the National Gendarmerie Training Center in Saint Astier, France, June 18-22, 2015.

Throughout the training, subsequent scenarios continued to build on the last in intensity and violence. Each mission became more complicated as the two forces worked together to respond to escalating urban turmoil. (U.S. Marine Corps video by 1st Lt. Danielle Dixon/Released)
And another one....


U.S. Marines and French Gendarmerie form a wall of shields as a Molotov cocktail explodes near their feet at the National Gendarmerie Tactical Training Center in Saint-Astier, France, Oct. 9. A platoon of Marines with Special-Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Force Crisis Response-Africa, had a unique opportunity to train at the center, specialized in restoring order and professional intervention.

(U.S. Marine Corps photo by Staff Sgt. Vitaliy Rusavskiy/Released)

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