• Photos from a recent Strait of Hormuz transit by the US Navy amphibious assault ship USS Boxer showed an 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit light armored vehicle parked on the flight deck, a sign that this warship was expecting trouble in the hostile waterway.
  • The Boxer was harassed by Iranian drones in the Strait of Hormuz last month, and the US says the warship downed one, if not two, of them. Another potential threat in this region is Iranian gunboats, which have targeted commercial shipping in recent months.
  • Last fall, Marines with the 31st MEU embarked aboard the USS Wasp for an exercise with an LAV on the flight deck for the first time in the South China Sea, experimenting with options to boost the combat capability of the large amphibious ships against threats such as fast gunboats.

An AH-1Z Viper attached to Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron (VMM) 163 (Reinforced), 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) takes off during a strait transit aboard the amphibious assault ship USS Boxer (LHD 4)

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