Monday, March 30, 2020

Marine Corps trots out a fluff piece to explain the sacking of tanks and the move to long range rockets/uavs...

via Marine Corps Times.
The Corps’ decision to divest of tanks, cut ground cannon artillery and light attack air platforms has stoked some criticism. Tanks historically have had success in high-end and urban warfare for decades boasting devastating firepower highly lethal to ground forces.

But tanks and armored vehicles have had trouble surviving against the threat of precision strike and the plethora of drone and reconnaissance systems flooding conflict zones across the Middle East.

For recent evidence, a Turkish launched operation targeting Syrian regime army troops in late February decimated more than a hundred tanks and armored vehicles, dozens of artillery pieces and hundreds of Syrian forces, according to the Turkish National Ministry of Defense.

Turkey posted videos highlighting a mixed role of drones, Paladin artillery systems and aircraft pounding Syrian armor from the skies over the course of several days. The Syrian army appeared helpless to defend from the onslaught of long range systems. (SNAFU BLOG note...a USMC MAGTF would have had MLRS, Marine Air, Cannons and would only lack ground based anti-air systems...a future whatever they call the upcoming abomination will have long range missiles but I've heard no talk of anti-air systems...well light weight systems on JLTVs but that's it) Even tanks camouflaged by buildings and bushes were no match for sensors and thermal imaging watching from the skies.

The problem is exacerbated by the number of sophisticated anti-tank systems flooding counterinsurgency conflicts across the globe and access to long range drones once only in control by state actors are now being operated by militia groups.

In Libya, the Libyan National Army has the upper hand in its drone war with the UN-backed Tripoli government. It’s equipped with an alleged UAE-supplied Chinese drone known as the Wing Long II that boasts a 2,000 km range through a satellite link and is reportedly armed with Chinese manufactured Blue Arrow 7 precision strike air-to-surface missiles.

Wait.  So let me get this straight.  They're using the fight in Syria as an example of why we need to change our entire force into something unrecognizable?

What happened to the vaunted, unbeatable Marine Air-Ground Combat Team?

They Syrian Army operated as tank units WITH attached substandard infantry.

Additionally do you see how fast they dumped the once big talking point for the Pentagon about fighting in mega cities being the new "hotness"?

I just don't get it and this article doesn't do a thing to clear it up.  It's a good thing for the Commandant that this virus drama is playing out cause he SERIOUSLY needs to do some messaging to get this thru.

I never in a million years thought I would say it but we could be looking at 2 perhaps 3 (if Berger can't turn this around) failed Commandants that pushed the Marine Corps all over the map and couldn't lay out a clear direction for it.

Yeah.  Unbeknownst to anyone the Marine Corps might simply be suffering a leadership crisis.  I so wish for the 80's and 90's when we had a series of Commandants that had a plan developed, followed it thru to completion and then saw it effectively perform in combat.

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