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Marine Fighter Training Squadron 401
VMFT-401 insignia
ActiveMarch 18, 1986 – present
CountryUnited States
TypeMarine Adversary
RoleAir interdiction
Part ofMarine Aircraft Group 41
4th Marine Aircraft Wing
Garrison/HQMarine Corps Air Station Yuma
Tail CodeLS
Commanding OfficerLtCol Eric Scherrer
Executive OfficerLtCol Michael Webb
Aircraft flown
FighterF-21A Kfir
F-5N Tiger II

Marine Fighter Training Squadron 401 (VMFT-401) is a United States Marine Corps Reserve fighter squadron flying the F-5N Tiger II. Known as the "Snipers", the squadron is the only adversary squadron in the Marine Corps, also is the first and only reserve squadron in the Marine Corps tasked to act as the opposing force in simulated air combat. They are based at Marine Corps Air Station Yuma and fall under the command of the 4th Marine Aircraft Wing and Marine Aircraft Group 41. VMFT-401 is a non-deployable unit.


Provide instruction to active and reserve Fleet Marine Forces and Fleet squadrons through dissimilar air combat training (DACT).

The majority of VMFT-401's annual workload is their work-up and participation in the semiannual Weapons and Tactics Instructor (WTI) course conducted by Marine Aviation Weapons and Tactics Squadron One (MAWTS-1) at MCAS Yuma, Arizona. They provide adversary work in Offensive Anti-Air Warfare and Anti Air Warfare exercises during this training evolution. They also help train new Marine F/A-18 Hornet pilots that are assigned to VMFAT-101 at Marine Corps Air Station Miramar.


Marine Fighter Training Squadron 401 (VMFT-401) was activated on March 18, 1986 at Marine Corps Air Station Yuma, Arizona. In June 1987 the squadron received a number of Israeli F-21A Kfirs and during that year logged more than 4,000 hours of flight time during 16 major exercises. In 1989, they transitioned to the F-5E Tiger II which they still use.

Following the inactivation of Marine Aircraft Group 46 in June 2009, VMFT-401 transitioned under Marine Aircraft Group 41.

The squadron was recognized by the Commandant of the Marine Corps for flying more than 50,000 mishap-free flight hours. They broke the 50,000 hour mark in early July 2010 having not had a mishap since October 1995. At an average of 45 minutes per flight, 50,000 hours equates to nearly 70,000 mishap free sorties.[1]

An F-5E Tiger II from VMFT-401 on display at the Marine Corps Air Station Miramar air show on October 3, 2008.
Formation of VMFT-401 F-5N Tiger IIs

Other U.S. adversary units[edit]

See also[edit]


Public Domain This article incorporates public domain material from websites or documents of the United States Marine Corps.
  • "Marine Fighter Training Squadron-401". MCAS Yuma Tenant Commands. United States Marine Corps. Retrieved 2007-12-16.
  • "Marine Fighter Training Squadron-401 [VMFT-401]". GlobalSecurity.org.
  • Llinares, Rick (January–February 2002). "VMFT-401: Adversary Tactics Experts" (PDF). Naval Aviation News. Department of the Navy. pp. 10–15. Retrieved 2007-12-16.