USNI News polled its writers, naval analysts and service members on what they consider the most important military and maritime stories in 2017.
The following is part of a series. Please also see Top Stories 2017: Navy Acquisition, International Acquisition, Marine Corps Operations, Marine Corps and Coast Guard Acquisition, International Operations and New Administration.
In 2017, the Navy and Marine Corps were active in nearly every corner of the globe. Some forces conducted land-attack and air warfare not seen by U.S. forces in years, while others provided desperately needed humanitarian aid.
U.S. Marines with the 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit fire an M777 Howitzer during a fire mission in northern Syria as part of Operation Inherent Resolve on Mar. 24, 2017. US Marine Corps Photo
CAMP PENDLETON, Calif. – The Marine Corps touts its ship-based Marine expeditionary unit deployments as its go-to, “911” force when needed. The Navy highlights its amphibious ready groups for the forward presence and “power projection” it gives overseas combatant commanders. Read More
Marines with Alpha Battery, Battalion Landing Team 1st Bn., 4th Marines, conduct an M777 Howitzer live-fire night fire mission during Exercise Alligator Dagger in Djibouti on Dec. 18, 2016. US Marine Corps Photo
The following post has been updated with a statement from U.S. Central Command.
An undisclosed number of Marines assigned to the 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit arrived in Syria recently to join U.S. forces and local forces poised to push Islamic State militants out of the city of Raqqa, according to a report in The Washington Post. Read More
A U.S. Marine with Company C, Battalion Landing Team 1st Bn., 4th Marines, 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU), gives the signal to advance onto the objective area during a helo-borne raid as part of Exercise Alligator Dagger in Djibouti, Dec. 22, 2016. US Marine Corps Photo
The new year began with no U.S. aircraft carrier and carrier strike group on watch in the Middle East. Read More
The Makin Island Amphibious Ready Group (ARG) underway in the western Pacific Ocean on Oct. 25, 2016. The Makin Island ARG is comprised of the amphibious assault ship USS Makin Island (LHD 8), the amphibious dock landing ship USS Comstock (LSD 45) and the amphibious transport dock ship USS Somerset (LPD 25), and is deployed with the embarked 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit. US Navy photo.
The Makin Island Amphibious Ready Group (ARG) and embarked 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit passed from U.S. 7th Fleet to U.S. 5th Fleet today, putting all three of the Navy’s deployed battle groups in the Middle East. Read More
A U.S. Marine with Weapons Company, Battalion Landing Team 2nd Battalion, 1st Marines, 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU), watches 81mm illumination mortar rounds fall during a joint mortar range with Royal Saudi Naval Forces Marines. US Marine Corps Photo
CAMP PENDLETON, CALIF. — A small six man U.S. special operations team embedded with the 2,200-member 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit during its recent deployment to the Middle East region to give the MEU a tighter link to the wider special operations community, 11th MEU commander told reporters on Monday. Read More