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YONGSAN GARRISON, South Korea — U.S. sailors and Marines will practice swapping tanks, vehicles and equipment next week in a quick-delivery supply exercise.

The MV Phillips and the SS Kocak, Military Sealift Command ships based in Diego Garcia, already are at a South Korean navy base in Chinhae. About 400 Marines and sailors will spend 15 days exchanging 11,000 items, including 680 wheeled combat vehicles, amphibious assault vehicles and 260 spare parts containers.

The two ships are part of three Maritime Preposition Squadrons that float around the world. Each squadron — consisting of four or five ships — can equip a 17,500-person Marine Expeditionary Brigade, said Marine Capt. Chris Perrine.

The brigade can fly in from another location on short notice, offload the ships and conduct military operations in a matter of days. The concept fits U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld’s vision of greater flexibility in responding to crises in the region, a military news release stated.

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