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Early morning on the western edge of the Pacific: Small teams of marines in company strength storm in their mobile combat boats to remote islands. Supported by unmanned drones (land, air, and sea), the U.S. Marines attack enemy DropShips and other warships with missiles before they can unload their invasion forces or penetrate deep into the Pacific. The target data generated by the combat boats are simultaneously passed on to the Air Force and Navy. These support the defense fight with long-range missiles. In order to avoid potential retaliatory strikes from the air, the leather neck changes its location every 48 to 72 hours by jumping from island to island. They use a new generation of amphibious combat boats that can also be controlled remotely. The small and manoeuvrable emergency boats are difficult for the enemy to understand and fight, especially near the coast due to their small signature.

The Amphibious Nyland Brigade of the Finns uses the “Watercat” of the shipyard Marine Alutech (Photos: Bundeswehr)

What sounds like a scenario from a new Tom Clancy novel is actually the content of a current simulation game by the US Marine Corps (USMC). The simulations performed there show that new tactics and the defensive fight with small amphibious boats would create “a lot of problems” for attacking armed forces in the future, according to General David Berger, acting commander of the USMC. "It is very difficult to face a relaxed naval expeditionary force that is small and mobile," said Berger in an interview in the "Wall Street Journal" in March 2020. Meanwhile, critics accuse him that his approach is only for fighting in the Western Pacific region its numerous island chains apply, so only for a specific region.

No new approach and geographically transferable

The example of the Swedish and Finnish coastal hunters shows that Berger's approach is not new and that his theories can also be transferred to other regions of the world - and here in particular to the Baltic Sea. The amphibious Nyland Brigade of the Finns and the Royal Amfibi Regiment (Amf 1) have been working together in a binational amphibious task unit for a long time. Mobile shock squads have been training hit and run tactics with different types of combat boats for years. The geography in the eastern Baltic Sea with its numerous rugged islands, archipelagos, rugged cliffs and fjords is figuratively similar to that in the western Pacific. With high-powered firearms (eg mortars), light missiles (including Hellfire and Spike-ER), reconnaissance sensors and with combat swimmers and mines, the Scandinavians practice fighting an enemy that penetrates into their territory. Mobile small teams jump from island to island.

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