Sacred Cows For What? Consider Force Structure Cuts to Marine Infantry

CIMSEC – Because of its size and relative lack of contribution to Expeditionary Advanced Base Operations, the Ground Combat Element and Marine infantry are the right places to start divesting to make room for the future.

Marines Tested Commandant’s New Vision In Largest Marine Exercise Since Cold War

Breaking Defense – The ambitious USMC Commandant says the exercises are shock testing “what we will expect to see in a realistic fight where large forces are spread out over great distances.”

The MAGTF is no longer sacred: The Marine Corps is looking at other ways to fight

Marine Corps Times – The concept that set the Marine Corps apart from the other services decades ago, the one that set up a particular way of warfare for generations of Marines, is no longer untouchable. The Marine Air-Ground Task Force may remain the way the Marines want to fight but increasingly it may not be what they will deliver when steel meets steel, especially in maritime spaces.

Aviation as the Key to Navy-Marine Integration

CIMSEC – The strength of the Navy and Marine Corps team is the use of seaborne mobility to achieve effects on land. New aviation platforms can reinvigorate this for the 21st century, making both the Navy and Marine Corps more survivable, deadly, and integrated.

Behold USS America Sailing With A Whopping 13 F-35Bs Embarked Aboard

War Zone – The Marines are inching closer and closer to executing their “Lightning Carrier” concept that would see amphibious assault ships bristle with F-35Bs.

The Counterrevolution in Naval Affairs

National Interest – Navy officials must formulate a concept that combines U.S. Marine and Navy forces, scatters them around the world, and yet preserves their unity as fighting forces despite physical distance and hostile efforts to fragment them.

Top Marine’s Force Changing Plans Prompt Talk Of Smaller Ships, F-35 Buy Changes

War Zone – The Commandant of the Marine Corps has a vision for a new way of fighting future wars and making regular deployments abroad.

Marine 2030 Force Design Is Nearly Complete; Concepts Now Being Modeled, Tested

USNI News – The Marine Corps is nearly done drawing out what its 2030 force will look like, and the service will spend the next month or so doing a significant amount of modeling and simulation to ensure they’ve got it right, the commandant said.

Marines Focused on China in Developing New Way to Fight in the Pacific

USNI News – The Marine Corps continues its drive to become a more agile and maritime-focused force that can respond to tensions quickly and buy decision space for military leaders and diplomats, the commandant said.

A Striking New Vision For the Marines, and a Wakeup Call For the Other Services

War on the Rocks – Military planning documents rarely draw more than a yawn in Washington, but the new Marine Corps Commandant’s Planning Guidance is proving an exception. Crafted by newly appointed Gen. David Berger, it lays out a striking new vision for the Corps — and jettisons a sizable number of long-held Marine articles of faith along the way.

Marine Planners Using Commandant’s Guidance to Start Crafting Future of the Corps

USNI News – Two months after new Commandant of the Marine Corps Gen. David Berger released his commandant’s planning guidance, the Marines charged with plotting how the service will operate in the future showed a glimpse into how the new guidance is shaping their work.

Sea Hunter’s Autonomous Controls Could Support Unmanned Beach Landings

USNI News – Autonomous control systems developed for the Pentagon’s Sea Hunter unmanned ship could also help keep Marine Corps logisticians out of harm’s way during future amphibious landings.

How Marine Security Cooperation Can Translate Into Sea Control

War on the Rocks – The Commandant’s Planning Guidance has the potential to radically transform the Marine Corps into a naval expeditionary force that is prepared to operate inside actively-contested maritime spaces in support of fleet operations. Core to Gen. Berger’s vision is the insertion of forces inside an adversary’s weapons engagement zone to provide sea denial and sea control by countering anti-access/area denial systems. Strangely absent from this new guidance, however, is a critical aspect of the Marine Corps ― security cooperation and foreign security force advising.

Marine Boss’s Audacious Plan To Transform The Corps By Giving Up Big Amphibious Ships

War Zone – The bold vision of a USMC that is far less dependent on the lumbering “Gator Navy” comes with a sacrificial offering of the force’s most sacred cow.

The Commandant’s Planning Guidance, Part II

Traditional Right – The new Marine Corps Commandant, General David H. Berger, has issued his Planning Guidance, which gives his commander’s intent for the next four years. As I wrote in my last column, it is a positive, even exciting, document that offers hope the Marine Corps can reshape itself to do what its doctrine of maneuver warfare requires. That said, it also raises questions in several important respects.

The New Commandant’s Planning Guidance

Traditional Right – The new Marine Corps Commandant, General David H. Berger, recently issued his Planning Guidance, a document which states his commander’s intent and sets the direction the Marine Corps will take over the next four years. In this case, it is a remarkable statement which, if turned into effective action, could finally transform the Marine Corps into a military that can do maneuver warfare instead of just talk about it.

SecDef & Marines Want To Disperse Across Pacific, But It’s Hard

Breaking Defense – Concerns over a new Okinawa airfield, and how to get Marines across vast swaths of ocean, are complicating American plans to spread forces across the Pacific.

Marines To Roll Out Major Modernization Plan, Heavy On Drones, Fires

Breaking Defense – The Marine Corps plans to roll out a new modernization plan late next month, putting meat on the bones of the ambitious guidance handed down by new Commandant Gen. David Berger in July that sought to light a fire under the Corps to reorient itself away from traditional ideas of amphibious warfare and COIN.

The “Dumbest Concept Ever” Just Might Win Wars

War on the Rocks – In the final analysis, expeditionary advanced base operations is a concept designed to exploit geography and contribute to winning a hard war against a nation with military capabilities approaching those of the United States. It gives the American military its best chance to win such a conflict. But, vastly more important, if the United States is prepared to implement this concept, it presents the nation with the best possible chance of deterring a future conflict and preserving the peace.

Talisman Sabre: Land-Based Missiles Vs. China

Breaking Defense – The Army’s experimental Multi-Domain Task Force tested new tactics for Pacific conflict, hand-in-glove with the Marines, Air Force, and Australians.

Sacred Cows Die As Marine Commandant Changes Course On Amphibs

Breaking Defense – “It would be illogical to continue to concentrate our forces on a few large ships,” the new USMC Commandant writes in his new guidance, setting decades of planning on its head. So what’s next?

Marines Reach 2011 Goal of 2,500 in Darwin, With Addition of HIMARS Platoon, More to Current Rotation

USNI News – The deployment of a High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) platoon to Australia has helped the Marine Corps reach the 2,500-Marine presence in Darwin that U.S. and Australian leaders promised in 2011.

Marines Took Out Iranian Drone for the Cost of a Tank of Gas

USNI News – Instead of a using an almost-million-dollar Navy missile, Marines splashed a hostile Iranian drone on Thursday for about the cost of a couple of gallons of gas.

New Commandant Berger Sheds 38-Amphib Requirement in Quest to Modernize USMC for High-End Fight

USNI News – New Commandant of the Marine Corps Gen. David Berger outlined his largely naval priorities for the Marine Corps, and he’s willing to shed some key tenets of the Marines’ amphibious force planning in recent years – including the demand for 38 amphibious warships to support a 2 Marine Expeditionary Brigade-sized forcible entry force.