The news comes as the US and the UK both saw intelligence leaders from The Security Service (MI5) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) declare China was posing a major threat to security. The two close allies, alongside Australia, have already demonstrated their security intentions in the Indo-Pacific region through the signing of the so-called AUKUS deal seeing nuclear-powered submarines operated in a joint project.
Now, huge naval drills are being conducted to address and highlight an overlooked insertion and exfiltration method that would be relevant in a conflict with China.
In early 2021, Force Recon Marines conducted a rare training with USS Ohio near Okinawa, and earlier this year US Marines trained with USS Georgia in the Mediterranean “to synchronize” Navy and Marine Corps operations.
Although submarine operations are mostly associated with Navy SEALs or US Army Green Beret combat divers, Marine special operators have a long history of submarine operations — Marine Raiders were the first US military unit to conduct a submarine-borne raid, attacking Makin Island in the Pacific in August 1942.
The reason for the use of sub-aquatic vessels was due to the difficulty of detecting them in the challenging waters of the Pacific region.
Getting to the fight on a submarine is considerably more discreet than arriving on other forms of transport, such as aircraft which can be more readily tracked.
If the infiltration and exfiltration are performed properly, the adversary may never know that US commandos and the sub-carrying them were there.
Retired Marine Raider Maj. Fred Galvin said: “Submarine operations allow Recon Marines and Raiders to infiltrate undetected and conduct reconnaissance or raid missions with a low probability of compromise.”
Mr Galvin also said this not only allows those operators to carry out missions of a “strategic nature” but it also “affects the enemy’s psychology in that they cannot easily defend against it and in order to defend against it they must commit massive personnel and material resources”.
The plans are said however to come with a high element of risk.
Mr Galvin continued: “The risks include significant physiological risks while conducting submarine lock-in, lock out and closed-circuit diving operations due to complicated pressure changes in the operation.”
Ukrainian navy obliterates Russian equipment left on Snake island
The lock-in and lock-out technique is used to get operators into and out of a submerged submarine undetected by enemy eyes or sensors. The Navy has a certain number of submarines with specially designed “lock-out trunks.”
During lock-out operations, commandos have to be very careful with their air levels and ensure that the air in the trunk doesn’t have too much carbon dioxide, which can be deadly for the operators and compromise the mission, as too much of the gas can create bubbles that an adversary can pick up with sonar.
Mr Galvin also said, “Mistakes under those conditions can result in convulsions, hypoxia, decompression sickness, as well as becoming disoriented, navigational errors, exhaustion, oxygen toxicity, severe cramps (especially during cold-weather diving operations) and equipment malfunctions, which can lead to not being able to have the entire team continue the subsurface mission.”
Iran, China and Russia to challenge ‘unipolar [REPORT]
Ukrainian hero drone pilot reveals all [REVEAL]
Rolls-Royce developing hypersonic missile capable of hitting Russia [INSIGHT]
Concerns have emerged in recent weeks over the ongoing security and safety of Taiwan.
Following a fiery high-level conference in Singapore last month, open and frank words emerged between US Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin and his Chinese counterpart Wei Fenghe.
Mr Austin warned China not to disrupt security in the region, whilst China said it would be prepared to go to war over what it claims is its sovereign right over Taiwan.
Follow @JamesLee_DE on Twitter for more Secuirty and Defence News