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Operation Tomodachi

"As America's crisis response force, we face down the threats of our time, anywhere in the world, at a moment's notice." —General Amos, Commandant of the Marine Corps

Gulf of Thailand

After several weeks at sea, Marines from the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit arrive in Hat Yao, Thailand, for a joint training exercise with the Royal Thai Military.

Marine:  Fire!

Thousands of miles to the north, a 9.0 magnitude earthquake triggers a massive tsunami off the coast of Japan.

Reporter: "You're seeing live footage of a tsunami engulfing the port area of Kamaishi in Iwate prefecture."

In response to the disaster, the 31st MEU immediately redirects to Akita, Japan.

11 March 2011. Operation Tomodachi begins.

With temperatures dropping below 15 degrees Fahrenheit, Marines arrive with food, water and heavy equipment.

Together with the Japanese Self Defense Force, they supply vital water and heating fuel to residents in difficult to reach areas.

On the hard-hit island of Oshima, Marines clear the rubble and help restore electricity for the first time in 16 days.

During their participation in Operation Tomodachi, Marines deliver more than 160,000 pounds of relief supplies to those affected by the disaster.

Marine: "I am absolutely amazed about what we were able to accomplish in such a very short amount of time."

VO: "Marines move toward the sounds of chaos with the courage and compassion to silence it."

Which Way Would You Run?