Major General John Love, commanding officer of the 2nd Marine Division said recently that the 1st Battalion, 10th Marines artillery battery has distinguished itself in the fight against the militants of the Islamic State.
“We think that battery has killed more ISIS than anybody,” Love said.
In late September, the battalion deployed from Camp Lejeune in North Carolina with their M777 155mm howitzers. Love would not specify where they are operating at this time.
He said that they were in a battle earlier this year in which they fired so many rounds so quickly they burnt out the barrels of two M777 howitzers – something that is not easily done.
In early 2016, a small group of Marines was dispatched to set up a stationary fire base near Mosul. Eventually that unit was replaced with an Army unit.
In 2017, a detachment of Marines consisting of elements from several artillery batteries was sent to support the assault on Raqqa in Syria. In this instance they were kept mobile and moved to different positions in order to pressure the enemy.
The 1st Battalion, 10th Marines were the first Marine artillery battery to be deployed from the US in order to support the ground fight against ISIS. They were deployed about seven months after the first artillery battery was deployed in Syria.
Love went on to say that there is a long-term plan to continue providing artillery support by sending units in rotation. He would not say which units would be sent next or for how long they would be deployed.