Stennis Space Center, MS. (February 22, 2022): To the military, rivers and streams are not an obstacle to overcome but an opportunity for victory. The riverine environment, which includes both inland and shallow water coastlines, has provided natural routes for transportation and communication among communities for centuries. In combat, the force that controls these waterways enjoys a major tactical advantage. These waterways are equally valuable to special operations forces as ideal avenues for insertion or escape.
The Naval Small Craft Instruction and Technical Training School was established in 1961 at what is now the John C. Stennis Space Center, named in honor of U.S. Sen. John C. Stennis for his staunch support of the nation's space program. The site was originally a static test facility for launch vehicles to be used in the Apollo manned lunar landing program. Less than eight years later, astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin walked on the lunar surface, safely transported thousands of miles by a space vehicle whose boosters were tested and proven flight-worthy at Stennis Space Center. In a testament to the workers at Stennis, all the Apollo space vehicle boosters did their job without a single failure, including those for the Apollo 11 mission landing of the first men on the moon.
The school is conducted by the Navy’s Special Warfare Command effort to teach riverine operations training to partner nations. There are 10 formal courses given in multiple languages to military and civilian security professionals from across the globe. Junior officers and selected enlisted must pass this 8-week course to effectively plan and safely execute patrol craft security. Students receive real time training in narcotic interdiction and waterborne special operations missions.
In the above photo, students from Estonia, Germany, Poland, and Romania participate in a Patrol Craft Officer Riverine training exercise on the Pearl River, Mississippi.
The men and women who volunteer for riverine training are some of the most dedicated servicemembers in our armed forces. That is why Support Our Troops is dedicated to getting our troops “what they need, where they need it.” Won’t you take a moment, right now, to help us send a little bit of comfort their way to boost their spirits during the holidays? You can join the thousands of Americans who make monthly contributions to Support Our Troops' Patriots Brigade® that provides comfort items and recreational activities for our troops, particularly those deployed overseas. Please visit our secure website https://supportourtroops.org/donate to donate to America’s finest today!