As hostile forces seized nearby islands, isolating western portions of the III Marine Expeditionary Force Area of Responsibility, they cut off vital sea lines of communication to the east. In response, during the hours of darkness, “STINGER 45” and “STINGER 46” departed a small island airfield and struck enemy outposts on northern and southern islands to reduce enemy command and control capability as well as eliminate their will to fight. Simultaneously, operations dispatched three Stinger flights to engage multiple ground vehicles, fast attack crafts, command and control nodes and enemy personnel.
U.S. Marine Corps AH-1Z Viper attack helicopters assigned to Marine Light Attack Helicopter Squadron (HMLA) 267 prepare to land at a forward arming and refueling point during a mission rehearsal exercise (MRX) at Ie Shima training facility, Okinawa, Japan, April 16, 2021. The MRX served as a culminating event for HMLA-267 as they near the end of their time in Okinawa as part of the Unit Deployment Program (Picture source: U.S. Marine Corps)