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Okinawa, Japan (Mar. 14, 1999) -- Marines and Sailors from the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) and the amphibious assault ship USS Belleau Wood (LHA 3) man the rails as the ship returns to Okinawa  after a four-month deployment to the Arabian Gulf. Modern U.S. Navy amphibious assault ships are called upon to perform as primary landing ships for assault operations of Marine expeditionary units. These ships use Landing Craft Air Cushion (LCAC), conventional landing craft and helicopters to move Marine assault forces ashore. In a secondary role, using Harrier aircraft (AV-8B) and anti-submarine warfare helicopters, these ships perform sea control and limited power projection missions. U.S. Navy photo by Sgt. Chris Tourge.  (RELEASED)

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Photo description

Photo Date
March 14, 1999
Sgt. Chris Tourge
Caption Writer
NVNS staff
Copyright Status
Public domain / free use
Service Branch
US Navy
Primary Equipment
Other Visible Equipment
Not available
Plane Number
Not available
Not available
Tail Code
Not available
Not available
Manning the rails