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Filipinos praise Royal Marines' uncompromising training regime

1 November 2016
Military leaders from the Philippines and Gibraltar saw the best of the best in training when they visited the Commando Training Centre Royal Marines in Lympstone.

Lieutenant General Glorioso Miranda headed the Filipino delegation; after 33 years’ service he’s now his country’s Vice Chief of Staff. A highly-decorated officer, he’s a qualified paratrooper, infantry leader and intelligence. He’s also completed not one but two commando courses – the UK’s and Singapore’s.

Accompanying him on the visit to the Devon commando school were Lt Gen Quidilla (Commander of the Southern Luzon Command), Brigadier General Aying (Assistant Deputy Chief of Staff for plans) and Brigadier General Pamonag (Commander of Special Operations).

Hosted by CTCRM’s Commandant, Colonel Kev Oliver, the Filipino visitors observed various elements of training undertaken by Royal Marines recruits and trained ranks at CTCRM.

I am impressed with the drill display and standard of the parade

Lt Col Lopez

There are two Filipino officers currently attempting to earn green berets on the All-Arms Commando Course – which allows non-Royal Marines to serve in 3 Commando Brigade and wear the legendary green beret – alongside soldiers, sailors and airmen.

Filipinos 2Lt Lictower and Capt Al Assaf were able to briefly discuss the challenges of the 13-week course with their fellow countrymen. 

“It has been exactly 30 years since I conducted my All Arms Commando Course and although it has altered – for the better – it still remains a significant challenge.

“I believe that if I had not completed it, I would not be in the position I am in now.”

A rather more frequent visitor to Lympstone is Lt Gen Ed Davis, Commandant General of the Corps between 2011 and 2014, and, since the beginning of 2016, Governor of Gibraltar.

He brought the Commanding Officer of the Royal Gibraltar Regiment, Lt Col Ivor Lopez, and his Regimental Sergeant Major, Christian Canepa, over from the British territory to witness the men of 221 Troop pass out after 32 weeks of training and receive their green berets.

“I am impressed with the drill display and standard of the parade,” said Lt Col Lopez. “What’s most impressive, having endured 32 weeks of training, is that they can put on such an outstanding performance.”

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