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The Royal Marines are often confused with being part of the Army; they are in fact part of the Royal Navy but fulfil a different role to the rest of the navy in that they engage in direct contact with the enemy on the land or at sea. Most naval warfare now is fought at distance using long range weapons or planes, however, the Royal Marines are on the front line of any skirmishes or combat with enemy forces.
Royal Marines form the ‘infantry component’ of the Royal Navy and are seen in every other aspect of the armed forces, particularly the Royal navy, as specialists. They are experts in attack and defence as well as specialisms including amphibious, arctic and mountain operations. In total there are approximately 8,000 Royal Marines all under one brigade – the prestigious 3 Commando.
Depending on the vessel and the operation, Royal Marines will usually accompany the Royal Navy on expeditions living aboard the ships. From here they can react quickly to situations and deal with any emergencies that may arise.
With the honour of becoming a Royal Marine come totally different expectations in terms of level of fitness, responsibility and aggression in order to succeed.
This is one of the more dangerous professions within the Armed Forces. The Royal Marines begin or 'train' as riflemen. Following this they are split into a commando unit, fleet protection or fleet standby. Those in the commando units are the most forward reaching and are therefore in the most danger to enemy and exposure.
Royal Marines are on call 24 hours a day every single day of the year. They spend months away from home and the role is mentally and physically demanding. It is worth mentioning here that this is one of the most competitive fields of the entire Armed Forces to gain entry and succeed in.