The Marines pulled tanks out of caves in Norway for war games close to Russia's border for the 2nd year in a row
- US Marines and soldiers joined Finnish, British, and Estonian troops in Finland for the Arrow 19 exercise last month.
- It was the second time the Marines have joined the Arrow exercise, getting tanks out of clandestine caves in Norway in order to participate.
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For the second year in a row, US Marines joined the US Army and partner forces in Finland last month for the Arrow military exercise.
During the two-week Arrow 19 exercise, the Marines again pulled tanks and other equipment from the cave complex in Norway that has been used to store gear since the Cold War.The exercise allows Marines "to evaluate our ability to offload personnel and equipment, generate combat power across the Atlantic, and then redeploy assets through a known logistically complicated area of operation," 1st Lt. Robert Locker, a Marine communications officer, said in a release.
Marines from Camp Lejeune in North Carolina and US Army Europe cavalry soldiers took part in the exercise alongside British army armored intelligence unit the Royal Lancers, an Estonian armored intelligence unit, and their Finnish hosts.
The Marines' gear came from six caves in central Norway, the exact location of which is not known. Three caves have everything from rolling stock to towed artillery; the other three hold ammunition, officials told Military.com in 2017.
That equipment is drawn from the caves "on a regular basis to support bilateral and multilateral exercises throughout Europe," Maj. Adrian Rankine-Galloway, a Pentagon spokesman, told Business Insider. The caves and gear there provide "a unique capability that is flexible and scalable to the operational requirements of the Marine Corps and US European Command."
The Arrow exercise - conducted on arid grassland in southwest Finland at a time of year when the sun is out 21 hours a day - is meant to put platoon- to battalion-size mechanized infantry, artillery, and tank units to the test, including in live-fire exercises.Below, you can see how this year's version went down.