A drone flying over a newly activated Marine Corps base on Guam “was disabled” on Jan. 14, a Marine spokeswoman said.
Maj. Diann Rosenfeld said in her statement Thursday to Marine Corps Times that the Naval Criminal Investigative Service was investigating the incident, which occurred over Marine Corps Base Camp Blaz. She declined to provide more information about what kind of drone was involved or how it was disabled, citing the ongoing investigation.
“As a public reminder, drone activity over Guam DoD property is prohibited,” she said in the emailed statement.
The Marine Corps officially opened Camp Blaz in January 2022, in preparation for a future shuffling of some 5,000 Marines from Japan to Guam as part of an agreement between the United States and Japan.
The incident, which Military.com first reported, comes as the Marine Corps is investing in platforms that can strike drones down from the sky.
Marine leadership has said the heavy use of drones in the recent wars in Nagorno-Karabakh and Ukraine shows the need for the Corps to get these counter-drone capabilities. It has identified the proliferation of cheap drones in particular as one risk to its base infrastructure.
The Marine Corps in December 2023 conducted a successful test of the vehicle-mounted Marine air defense integrated system, shooting down several drones using Stinger missiles and the 30 mm cannon.
The service also has weapons that rely on directed energy to fry drones, including the compact laser weapon system. In July, the Corps announced it was testing an artificial-intelligence-enabled microwave weapon that could take down drone swarms.
Irene Loewenson is a staff reporter for Marine Corps Times. She joined Military Times as an editorial fellow in August 2022. She is a graduate of Williams College, where she was the editor-in-chief of the student newspaper.