Face of Defense: Marines Supply Ammunition to Troops

CAMP LEATHERNECK, Afghanistan — A sophis­ti­cat­ed sup­ply sys­tem keeps ammu­ni­tion read­i­ly avail­able for troops post­ed in south­west­ern Afghanistan, accord­ing to a senior Marine Corps non­com­mis­sioned offi­cer who’s involved in the effort.

“We sup­ply all [Region­al Com­mand] South­west coali­tion units with ammu­ni­tion,” said Marine Corps Mas­ter Sgt. Adam New­sum, the ammu­ni­tion sup­ply point oper­a­tions chief for 2nd Marine Logis­tics Group (For­ward) here. Ammu­ni­tion deliv­er­ies in Afghanistan are con­duct­ed by ground sup­ply con­voys or heli­copter, said New­sum, a New York City native.

“We make sure the ammu­ni­tion is prop­er­ly stored, trans­port­ed, han­dled and inven­to­ried,” he said, “and then we get it to the warfight­ers so they can con­duct their mis­sions.”

Sev­er­al units work togeth­er, New­sum said, to coor­di­nate the move­ment of a vast amount of ammu­ni­tion to ensure Marines and oth­er troops in Afghanistan can accom­plish their mis­sions.

Ammu­ni­tion sup­plies, he said, must be sys­tem­at­i­cal­ly request­ed, tal­lied, and trans­port­ed with effi­cien­cy and accu­ra­cy. Every ship­ment, he added, must be account­ed for down to the last round — quite a chore con­sid­er­ing the num­bers.

“We sup­ply any­where between $7 and $12 mil­lion dol­lars of ammu­ni­tion a month to all the coali­tion forces with­in Hel­mand province,” said Marine Corps Staff Sgt. Bri­an Tay­lor, who hails from Day­ton, Ohio.

Cur­rent­ly, Tay­lor said, about $250 mil­lion of ammu­ni­tion has been dis­trib­uted to Region­al Com­mand South­west units.

“We’ve moved almost $60 mil­lion worth of ammo over the past six months,” he added.

Ammu­ni­tion deliv­er­ies to Afghanistan are air­lift­ed from Kuwait to Camp Leath­er­neck, Tay­lor explained.

“Then we look at who in our inven­to­ry list needs ammu­ni­tion,” he con­tin­ued, “and decide what will be the most effi­cient way for it to get to their final loca­tions.”

Ammu­ni­tion is some­thing most Marines take for grant­ed “with­out real­iz­ing how much effort goes into ensur­ing they always have a con­stant sup­ply,” Tay­lor said.

“The Marines I have out here get all the cred­it for get­ting the job done,” New­sum said. “They’re moti­vat­ed, dis­ci­plined and want to be here. For many, this is their sec­ond tour of duty out here or Iraq. We’re all glad to be help­ing our guys get the mis­sions done.”

U.S. Depart­ment of Defense
Office of the Assis­tant Sec­re­tary of Defense (Pub­lic Affairs)