Friday, August 05, 2022

Is the Marine Corps Becoming Irrelevant?

 Thanks to Carlton for the link!


It should be noted that, during each challenge to the existence of the Marine Corps, it never discarded capabilities. Innovations were always additive. That is why so many retired Marines -- and secretly, many active-duty ones -- are so worried about the commandant's Force Design 2030 initiative, which is well underway.

In implementing Force Design 2030, Gen. David Berger, the current Marine Corps commandant, has consulted with the secretary of defense. Apparently, however, Berger did not coordinate with the combatant commanders who now control military operations in the major theaters worldwide.

Before the Goldwater-Nichols military reform legislation of the 1980s, the president, via the defense secretary, appointed a commander to manage a crisis and then assigned forces to that commander. Today, however, the combatant commanders plan and coordinate for potential crises in their assigned regions. The service chiefs vie to demonstrate capabilities in those theaters. Despite recent developments in Ukraine, the combatant commanders in the Middle East and Europe will want heavy combat equipment, which the Marine Corps no longer has.

Berger has bet the farm that the next big war will be against China. If he is right, and the Corps contributes significantly, he will be a hero. If he is wrong and the next conflict occurs elsewhere, the Marine Corps faces irrelevance. (NOTE THAT THIS HAS BEEN A COMMON COMPLAINT OF MINE....Berger is thinking Pacific, I'm thinking Middle East, again, or Africa)

Berger's ideas on sensor-to-shooter technologies, increased use of robotics and information operations are visionary and should be commended. In the 1990s, I was a senior member of the Marine Corps' experimentation establishment, and Berger was a midgrade staff officer. We hoped to leverage emerging technologies and field lighter, more lethal forces in situations where they were appropriate. However, I also believed that situations such as counterinsurgency and urban combat would still require conventional capabilities.

We could always organize small forces for high-tech combat if needed from larger existing formations, but that is no longer an option under Berger's plan. The Corps cannot afford to ever tell a combatant commander, "Sorry, we don't do windows."

Story here 

No comments :

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.