Talisman Sabre: Top End beach under mock attack by US, Japanese, Australian troops
A deserted beach south-west of Darwin is “under attack” as part of the Talisman Sabre exercise involving United States Marines and Japanese and Australian Army soldiers.
Fog Bay, about 70 kilometres south-west of Darwin, is where the Talisman Sabre 2015 exercise is underway. The exercise is described by the Australian Defence Force (ADF) as a “biennial combined Australian and United States training activity, designed to train our respective military forces in planning and conducting Combined Task Force operations to improve the combat readiness and interoperability between our respective forces”.
It will involve up to 30,000 Australian and other personnel, and is a “major undertaking that reflects the closeness of our alliance and the strength of the ongoing military-military relationship”, the ADF said.
Australian, US and Japanese units advanced on three separate locations from ships along the coast, aided by amphibious vehicles.
Some of the troops then moved inland towards a designated target, battling hidden enemy along the way.
The landing has taken about two years to plan and focuses on “the planning and conduct of mid-intensity high-end war fighting”.
The US Army described activities during the exercise to include “force preparation activities, Special Forces activities, amphibious landings, parachuting, land force manoeuvres, urban operations, air operations, maritime operations and the coordinated firing of live ammunition and explosive ordnance from small arms, artillery, naval vessels and aircraft”.
The ADF said it was “taking all necessary steps to safeguard the environment” during Talisman Sabre.
“The ADF protects endangered species and marine mammals through a comprehensive framework of risk mitigation procedures developed after careful analysis of all Defence maritime activities,” it said.
The US Army said Talisman Sabre, or Saber, was a “major undertaking that reflects the closeness of our alliance and the strength of the ongoing military-military relationship”.
Photo: A hovercraft lands at Fog Bay during the Talisman Sabre landing exercise (ABC News: Alexandra Fisher)