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Marines drink cobra blood in jungle survival training at Cobra Gold

U.S. Marines with Alpha Company, Battalion Landing Team, 1st Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment, drink the blood of a king cobra as part of jungle survival training during exercise Cobra Gold 2020 at Ban Chan Khrem, Chanthaburi, Thailand, March 2, 2020.

HANNAH HALL/U.S. MARINES

By STARS AND STRIPES Published: March 3, 2020

Cobra Gold is one of the Indo-Pacific’s largest multinational exercises. It's also the one where U.S. troops drink cobra blood.

The exercise, which kicked off Feb. 25 in Thailand and is scheduled to wrap up Friday, includes events such as an amphibious assault demonstration, landmine destruction and a combined arms live fire exercise.

But probably the most photographed event is the jungle survival training, during which Thai instructors share with the Americans their knowledge of life-sustaining jungle sources of food and water — plants, insects and, of course, cobra blood.

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A Marine with 1st Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment, eats a live scorpion as part of jungle survival training during exercise Cobra Gold 2020 at Ban Chan Khrem, Chanthaburi, Thailand, March 1, 2020.
NICOLAS CHOLULA/U.S. ARMY

A Marine with Combat Logistics Battalion 31, 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit, drinks the blood of a king cobra as part of jungle survival training during exercise Cobra Gold 2020 at Ban Chan Khrem, Chanthaburi, Thailand, March 1, 2020.
NICOLAS CHOLULA/U.S. ARMY

A U.S. Marine with Alpha Company, Battalion Landing Team, 1st Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment, eats plants used for survival during jungle survival training as part of exercise Cobra Gold 2020 at Ban Chan Khrem, Chanthaburi, Thailand, March 2, 2020.
JORDAN E. GILBERT/U.S. MARINE CORPS

U.S. Marines with Alpha Company, Battalion Landing Team, 1st Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment, drink the blood of a king cobra as part of jungle survival training during exercise Cobra Gold 2020 at Ban Chan Khrem, Chanthaburi,Thailand, March 2, 2020.
HANNAH HALL/U.S. MARINE CORPS

U.S. Marines get their phones out to document Royal Thai Marine Chief Petty Officer 1st Class Pairoi Prasarnsai showing them how to handle king cobras as part of jungle survival training during exercise Cobra Gold 2020 at Ban Chan Khrem, Chanthaburi, Thailand, March 2, 2020.
HANNAH HALL/U.S. MARINE CORPS

U.S. Marines with Alpha Company, Battalion Landing Team, 1st Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment, drink the blood of a king cobra as part of jungle survival training during exercise Cobra Gold 2020 at Ban Chan Khrem, Chanthaburi, Thailand, March 2, 2020.
HANNAH HALL/U.S. MARINE CORPS

A Royal Thai Marine instructor squeezes water from a banana tree root into the mouth of a U.S. Marine with Alpha Company, Battalion Landing Team, 1st Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment, during jungle survival training as part of exercise Cobra Gold 2020 at Ban Chan Khrem, Chanthaburi, Thailand, March 2, 2020.
JORDAN E. GILBERT/U.S. MARINE CORPS

A U.S. Marine with Alpha Company, Battalion Landing Team, 1st Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment, drinks the blood of a king cobra during jungle survival training as part of exercise Cobra Gold 2020 at Ban Chan Khrem, Chanthaburi, Kingdom of Thailand, March 2, 2020.
JORDAN E. GILBERT/U.S. MARINE CORPS

Royal Thai Marine Chief Petty Officer 1st Class Pairoj Prasarnsai eats an insect as part of jungle survival training with U.S. Marines from Alpha Company, Battalion Landing Team, 1st Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment, during exercise Cobra Gold 2020 at Ban Chan Khrem, Chanthaburi, Thailand, March 2, 2020.
JORDAN E. GILBERT/U.S. MARINE CORPS

A Marine with 1st Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment, drinks the blood of a king cobra as part of jungle survival training during exercise Cobra Gold 2020 at Ban Chan Khrem, Chanthaburi, Thailand, March 1, 2020.
NICOLAS CHOLULA/U.S. ARMY

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