Punta Arenas, Chile.(September 21, 2023): In this photo by Sergeant Cameron Hermanet, U.S. Marines with 1st Battalion, 4th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, and members of the Chilean naval infantry climb Mount Tarn for the culminating event of a bilateral freezing weather training exercise. Throughout the maneuver, Marines learned proper techniques for obtaining food and water, employed different weapons and gear, built shelters, practiced foot movements over snow, and conducted wintry weather personnel rescue. Training exchanges in South America provide U.S. forces opportunities to train in exotic environments such as humid jungles, frigid mountains, and complex waterways while strengthening partnership and enhancing overall interoperability with regional partners.
Chile is one of the United States' strongest partners in Latin America and a leader in promoting respect for the rule of law, economic stability, education, environmental protection, human rights, and sustainable development.
Regarded as one of the least corrupt and most vibrant democracies in South America, with a healthy economy, Chile is noted as being one of the closest strategic allies of the United States in the Southern Hemisphere, along with Colombia, and remains part of the Inter-American Treaty of Reciprocal Assistance.
The Chilean Marine Corps consists mainly of an amphibious assault force, a coastal defense force, special forces, and support garrisons. The Chilean Marines provide artillery and coastal defense, with batteries of howitzers and Excalibur missiles, and they protect the country’s naval facilities. They also specialize in bomb disposal as part of their international responsibilities.
The Chilean Expeditionary Amphibious Brigade forms the amphibious component of the Corps with a mission to support the armed services in peacekeeping missions and in times of conflict and to provide an amphibious capacity to project naval power over hostile territory.
The 1st Battalion, 4th Marines (1/4) is based out of Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, California and consists of approximately 800 Marines and sailors. They fall under the command of the 1st Marine Regiment and the 1st Marine Division.