Home » News » Marine Corps » The Future of the Marine Corps; They’ve Fought This Battle Before

The Future of the Marine Corps; They’ve Fought This Battle Before

by Greg on September 9, 2010

The Marines are in the news today battling (Barbary) pirates, good on ‘em; talk about getting back to their roots. As I read the news reports, and this post at Tom Rick’s blog on the future of the Marine Corps, I recalled a recent conversation with some department of the Navy types who expressed just how bad the relationship is between the sea services. Like most troubled relationships, the soured feelings revolve around money, or the lack thereof.

The Marines want to maintain a robust amphibious assault, enough to lift two Marine Expeditionary Brigades, and get them ashore via their Expeditionary Fighting Vehicle (EFV) armored amphibian. The Navy wants capital ships and intends to cut maritime prepositioning force ships, possibly amphibs and the EFV. A real battle is brewing and it’s bound to get ugly as budget realities sink in.

The long wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have turned the Marines into a much smaller and more poorly equipped version of the Army. Defense Secretary Robert Gates has made it clear he thinks the U.S. has too much amphibious assault insurance. Few defense watchers believe Marine numbers won’t come down in the near future; the question is will they go lower than the pre-2007 175,000 level.

Given all that, it was a bit amusing to hear Undersecretary of the Navy Bob Work declare at a forum at CSIS recently that “the future of the Marine Corps is bright.” One thing the Marines have going for them is they’ve been here before. As Ronald Spector writes in, Eagle Against the Sun, the Marines emerged from World War I with tremendous prestige, yet the budget knives were sharp in the economically depressed 1920s and early 1930s.

“At the end of the 1920s, a secret study by the army staff suggested that the army could well assume most of the Marine Corps functions. The chief of naval operations reportedly concurred in this idea, “recognizing that by shifting the Marines [to the Army], the Navy could save money.”

The Hoover administration, always interested in saving money, also greeted the plan with enthusiasm. Between 1929 and 1933, Hoover imposed a 24.4 percent manpower cut on the Marine Corps, as compared to 5.6 percent for the navy and none for the army.”

How did the Marines respond to attacks from the Hoover administration, and the army?

“[W]ith an impressive public relations campaign. Retired army and Marine Corps generals were mobilized to “speak for the Corps,” and influential Congressmen like Carl Vinson, Melvin J. Maas, and Fiorello La Guardia threw their weight behind restoring the cuts. In a showdown vote, the House Appropriations Committee voted down Hoover’s proposed cuts and held the strength of the corps at a little over 15,000 men. The corps had been “saved” – but all concerned realized that it had been a close call.”

The Marines have already embarked on a public relations campaign to sell themselves and are reaching out to influential pundits and making the rounds at Washington, DC think tanks. Yet, as Spector wrote, Marine leaders back in the 1920s knew a PR campaign would only get them so far. The corps needed a new mission; so began the Marine’s specialization in amphibious warfare.

Outgoing commandant Gen. James Conway has said the Marines must get back to their expeditionary and amphibious roots. Is that enough? Do the Marines need a new mission to win in the coming budget battles? If so, what?

– Greg Grant

Share |

{ 261 comments… read them below or add one }

EC September 9, 2010 at 12:27 pm

I was in the Marine Corps for 6 yrs and had to transfer to the Army because the Marines just aren't given the proper funding for things such as adequate training on the fire ranges or jump school. The Marine Corps could easily be airborne qualified if they were just given the opportunity to go. Only Marine Recon gets to go to jump school.

I will miss the uniform, camaraderie, and trust in my Marines but greater opportunities are provided in a more well funded Army.


DIRTYDOG August 22, 2013 at 11:18 am

The Future Of Marines is that every Marine should be better trained than any Army Ranger.And units of marines Should be dispersed even using Coast Guard for transportation until a larger force is needed for a beach assault even though with drone technology etc a full scale beach assault would be unlikely.The scattered units could come together when a large force operation is needed.The Corps is to small to be using standard infantry tactics and should move towards a unilateral special warfare role.


Chops September 9, 2010 at 1:31 pm

First To Fight and First To Die- especially if they can't get the eqpt. they need to fight.The Marines are the branch of the service that is feared most-when the ememy knows they are coming they know they're in trouble.They should have the best weapons and most support of any branch of the service


Jacob September 9, 2010 at 5:19 pm

"The Marines are the branch of the service that is feared most-when the ememy knows they are coming they know they're in trouble."

So what's the difference between maintaining a separate Marine Corp and simply having the Army adopt the same training methods and tactics used by the Marines?


phrogger September 9, 2010 at 8:21 pm

Are you kidding? The Army is so proud of their "warrior" ways being all they can be that they would never, ever, adopt anything the USMC came up with. If they did, they would never admit it, as I am sure has been the case in the past.


jhm October 22, 2010 at 5:53 pm

hell ya. our army doesnt hold a fear inducing reputation. the marines do.


kyle September 9, 2010 at 3:42 pm

agree with bulldog. they are feared the most by the enemy and always have been. they are more efficient and have better traditions and uniforms and standards but we could get by without them honestly. i would hate to see them integrated or dissolved but if they would just be transferred to the army and still have the same mission as an amphibious force it would be better than nothing


M167A1 September 9, 2010 at 6:20 pm

Infuratingly in Safwan a POW asked us if we were Marines… He was relieved when someone said no.



wacko1 September 9, 2010 at 6:56 pm

Thats Great—It reminds me of the end of Butch Cassidy and the Sundance kid when they were surrounded by the Bolivian army and Butch asked Sundance if he saw Joe Laforge out there-Sundance said no, then Butch said good,for a minute I thought we were in trouble.


ilajl2003 September 11, 2010 at 5:51 am

I'm a former Marine and I think we have just gone away from what traditional Marines were meant when we were formed. I think it would be better for us to play the role of maritime warriors and let the army do the land warrior stuff that they are trained and better equipped than us Marines. Let's face it the Army are better equipped and have the man power to handle tough jobs. Marines are under budgeted and I think that's crappy. I should know I rolled into Iraq with those vietnam era M16's and the army was roaming around with the updated M4's and better equipment than what I had…


rob September 11, 2010 at 10:25 am

kyle you sound like a national
guard wanna be get a life


Gregory Romeu September 12, 2010 at 9:11 pm

Better get off whatever BS LSD trip or dope smoking that you're doing and get a grip! The Marines will NEVER cave in for that sort of BS. Not in this or any future lifetime.


Adrian September 9, 2010 at 4:02 pm

I am an Active Duty Marine and this is somewhat of a spit in the face. Honestly, I would rather get out of the military then transition into the Army.


Keith September 9, 2010 at 4:17 pm

I would say one thing. The US Marines is the leading force. Fearless and Proud driven. I want to join the Marine Corps. Not because of money or school, no. Because i can see that being a Marine brings the best out of any human and he or she will wear that better person of themselves FOREVER. And if you take away that force other countries will know and we will pay. Other branches are just tooooooooo nice in training and the respect level is just not there to hold or make a Marine. No lie…


Devilpup September 9, 2010 at 5:10 pm

Keith, thats exactly why i enlisted in the Marines myself.


A historian September 9, 2010 at 5:22 pm

Brainwashed by marine propaganda.


M167A1 September 9, 2010 at 6:11 pm

You should study more history.

Also you should not be a jerk.


phrogger September 9, 2010 at 8:26 pm

Have you ever served in the Marines?? I only ask because that's the kind of comment all my loser friends used to say to me when I went home on leave…I would just smile at them…the same way I'm smiling at you right now.


praetorian September 10, 2010 at 9:27 am

There is nothing wrong with a man trying to better himself, weather its propaganda
or not. Reminds me of Band Of Brothers when one of the characters said why he joined the 101st airborne. He volunteered because he wanted the guy next to him in the fox hole to be the best. Keith feels the same way about the marines. Personally
Im proud of keith and men like him that want to be the best at what they do.


Jim September 12, 2010 at 6:29 pm

Brainwashed By Socialist Liberal Propaganda. Having Pride (that you deserve) is not being brainwashed. if not for the Marines None of us would be hear, we would have lost WW1


anon June 8, 2011 at 7:43 pm

Way to underplay the fact that the war was almost over by 1917, when the United States /finally/ entered the war.

M167A1 September 9, 2010 at 6:10 pm

I understand but I've served with people who have transitioned. And they made excelent soldiers. Even if they keep calling the floor a deck.

I wouldn't worry though… The Marines will be be around after the Army has been converted in the "peace force" or some such nonsense.


Josh September 10, 2010 at 2:35 pm

i completely agree i am about to join and no one who is not in the Marines understands the difference between us and the army.


Gregory Romeu September 12, 2010 at 9:14 pm

The only thing that people who are NOT a Marine understand is that they are NOT A MARINE.


Gregory Romeu September 12, 2010 at 9:13 pm

Stand down on leving the Corp. Devil Dog. We got your back(s). Semper Fidelis.


Don Meaker May 9, 2012 at 6:50 pm



STemplar September 9, 2010 at 4:09 pm

The USMC isn't going anywhere, that just isn't political reality to even discuss it. I think letting them do what they do best, forward deployed expeditionary capacity for short term campaigns, and pairing down the missions they have taken on to supplement the Army is what's best for them. They do need to go on a weight and numbers diet. Roll the savings into updating their gear and USN ship building. What is that magic number for them? Beats me, but it would be less than now. Accepting the whole massed BDEs storming ashore under fire is a thing of the past would be a good step in determining that number though.


Oxcart1 September 9, 2010 at 4:27 pm

Not military, but a supplier of specialized equipment to the Marine Corps and others.

The Marines need to get real and ditch the EFV. That water hog is just as unrealistic as the Army's FCS and their Crusader ( both 60T and 40T versions ) before that. it is realism that will prevail in the next decades regardless of administration, and romantic ideas about missions and the hardware to achieve them are destined for the trash can.

Also, to Mr. Chops…I do hope that you are making that statement about the USMC entitled to the "best equipment and best support of all the services". Wow….talk about a spit in the eye of your fellow combatants ! Sounds like you are saying that your life is worth more than theirs ?

Shame on you !


oxcart1 September 9, 2010 at 4:29 pm

Sorry…I meant to say that I hope you are making that comment tongue in cheek.


Chops September 9, 2010 at 4:45 pm

Screwed the pooch when I said the support comment–What I meant was every person wearing the uniform of the US MIilitary should have the best eqpt. and support to do the difficult job that they do.


fobbit September 9, 2010 at 5:43 pm

Well if the Marine Corps is viewed as the offensive tool for our combined military then why would we NOT prioritize their equipment over the much larger Army? A smaller, better trained, better EQUIPPED force is more efficient when taking into consideration the budget woes of fielding a much larger force with equal training and equipment. Right?

Semper Fi.


oxcart1 September 10, 2010 at 11:32 pm

If the Marines want to put forth the budget to haul the corps around the world then they should have the funding to do it. But obviously the Navy doesn't think too much of the cost of hauling them around the world in search of a form of warfare that doesn't have any application.

Unless you figure that wading ashore in the the DR ( or Lebanon ??) uncontested is the most efficient way to deploy a force. Just don't see the right cost benefit ratio
as a thinking and non aligned to a particular taxpayer.


Mick September 9, 2010 at 4:29 pm

The United States need a force that can go anywhere and do whatever is needed. An army that does yoga instead of pushups will never be capable of this. This is why there will always be a nned for the Marine Corps


Engineer September 10, 2010 at 6:04 pm

I've served in both the USMC and USA and don't remember the Yoga – do remember the pushups – think I I would have liked the Yoga better!!!


corey September 10, 2010 at 6:52 pm

Trust me.. They do, you must have been in a while ago. Basic training using mainly yoga and pilates We did'nt start doing push-ups during PT until week 6…


Robert A. Fritts September 10, 2010 at 11:25 pm

Yes and now the Army has fewer recruits on medical hold during training. And for less time on medical hold. The USMC has as many recruits with medical hold statuses in line with the 1970s. And has a much higher % of medical release from active duty of 1st year service members(for medical problems acquired in service) than the other services combined. This is further skewed by the fact that the USMC is the smallest service. This incurs full College and VA benefits for folks who serve as little as two weeks. That is a waste of your tax dollars.


nick September 11, 2010 at 3:57 am

haha they're called Army Rangers buddy, get real idiot.


damon September 9, 2010 at 5:06 pm

My strategy using US military is to use marines to lead, army to hold foot after marines conducted forward battle. Navy and Air Force can provide supports, so be it the logistics or CAS.

Marines go in first, Army provide armors and artillery battery, and Army's push from behind can guaranteed Marines operation succeed. Gulf War 2, there was serious competition between army and marines, we didnt need that.

My view on marines is that they're US sword and Army's US shield. do u understand what i'm talking about?


Donnell September 9, 2010 at 9:56 pm

Damon, I hear you but you're wrong, people have this outdated thinking that they believe the Marines always go in first which is totally false. The unit of the branch with the capability to succeed on a particular mission goes in first and sorry to burst you bubble. Nowadays that unit do not belong to the Marines. Its just a fact…


lane September 10, 2010 at 1:38 am

If you're talking about army airborne, and spec ops, yes they go in first to capitalize on something important, the Marine come next with their MAGTF (Marine air ground task force) pretty much a force that can sustain itself for over 60 days… we're talking armor, medevac, CAS, spec ops, vehicles, weapons, arty, etc. For those of you that havent picked up a book recently we are a Expeditionary force in readiness 24/7, we punch a hole in the enemy and when the army comes they take it. Why do people constantly think they know everything. There's the facts for you Donny-boy


daniel September 10, 2010 at 2:11 pm

can you describe a situation where a MAGTF did that and then waited for the army to show up?


ilajl2003 September 11, 2010 at 6:12 am

I'm a former Marine and you got it all wrong. Marines don't have enough heavy brigades to sustain the long journey. That's where the army comes in. They have the heavy brigades to sustain the push and this whole competition between Marines and Army is a joke. My brother was in the Army 3rd infantry division. His unit went into Baghdad first, he constantly throws this in my face and frankly I'm tired of it…I'll give kudos to where it is needed and I must say Marines and Army both kick ass, we need each other….


daniel September 12, 2010 at 10:33 pm

Thank You, said as it should be


Robert A. Fritts October 22, 2010 at 3:50 pm

Well said.


Lawrence September 13, 2010 at 2:53 pm

Well said damon
, from a former leatherneck(Marine)


Don Meaker May 9, 2012 at 6:54 pm

Don't know much about strategy, do you? In Liberia, a platoon of Marines were the last ones withdrawing from the embassy, and were cut off, unable to accomplish their mission.

They were rescued by two Army Special Forces men.


Keith February 22, 2013 at 12:38 am

We understand, but you're an idiot because nothing you're saying is accurate. The marines are not the first to fight and are not the "sword" on the battlefield. There's a reason it's called the ARMy, idiot.


M.R. September 9, 2010 at 5:22 pm

WOW! First of all for the few soldiers, retired or active, who think that it is alright to bash either the Army or the Marines, shame on you. Friendly rivalries between the branches is fine but to say that the Army is not capable is ridiculous. I am a former Army Ranger and now a member of the National Guard enroute to becoming an officer and I bet I am in as good, if not, better shape than a majority of the individuals doing the bashing in this comment thread. So it is a slap in the face to the "brotherhood of soldiers" when people say that either the Army or the Marines are not capable or needed. We are all in this together so people should grow up and support all branches of the military, because one day we might just save you a**. Rangers Lead The Way!


Donnell September 9, 2010 at 9:46 pm

Well said M.R., As a infantry soldier myself I totally agree with you and when the topic ever comes up that compares the Army and the Marines. Thats when all the crazy talk come out from all the big talkers and non-thinkers. A little friendly rivary is ok, but please lets keep it real…


daniel September 10, 2010 at 1:30 am

I think alot of that comes from the Marines (or their fan boys) disparaging the Army every chance they get in the process of proping themselves up.


lane September 10, 2010 at 1:31 am

Seconded by active Marine Infantryman, well said. On a side note, we have over a batallion size of Marines serving as Marine Security Guards that guard embassies, im pretty sure those Marines could be doing something more productive, and diplomatic security could take care of that… just saying


Robert A. Fritts September 10, 2010 at 11:35 pm

I worked at the US embassy in Mexico City in Civil Affairs for 3 years. I feel that a Marine Security Detachment is warranted at only a small percentage of locations. But all the military at US Embassy Mexico City 94-96 really freaked out the 250 Mexican Soldiers assigned to our location(two buildings over) by doing insane PT 5-6 days a week. We would do Gorilla drills and log PT in the Park across the road as the Mexican soldiers kicked a soccer ball around and drank Tecate.


GySgt GB, USMC September 10, 2010 at 11:20 am

All I have to say about the Army attempting to take over the Marine Corps, is that it will never happen! Just watch on youtube "New Army bootcamp" Semper Fi!!


ilajl2003 September 11, 2010 at 5:58 am

Hey Ranger I'm a former Marine and I agree with you. I get tired of Marines and Army bashing each other. Both branches can do the job equally but to have 2 branches doing the same thing doesn't make sense to me. I'm open to having both branches merge into one. I remember back in my day there was rumored talk about this and it makes sense to me…..


Tate September 9, 2010 at 5:54 pm

I always find it sad that the most efficient, best disciplined, most hard charging military service is always the one having to justify its existence/strength requirements.

No – I am not a Marine, but I've worked with them a lot.


Laxman September 10, 2010 at 3:37 pm

As an Air Force guy working directly with the Army, I've always found working with the Marines much easier. They may be brainwashed or whatever, but damn do they get the J-O-B D-U-N.


ilajl2003 September 11, 2010 at 6:06 am

I'm a former Marine and Marines were meant to be maritime warriors not land warriors and water only goes so far. That's why you have the Army, they are more suited and capable of prolonging land wars. Plus they have the budget to sustain their existence. Until people in Congress gets their act right the Marines are on shaky ground. The Army is meant to fight the tough fight that's why they are better equipped and have a bigger budget. Sure us Marines are kick ass but the Army kicks ass longer than us Marines…Which I have no problem with that just means my deployments are shorter. Army deployments in the combat zone are 1 yr and can be exteded for more. When I was in Iraq I only did 7 months…..which was better for us Marines meaning less of a chance to get killed…


Don Meaker May 9, 2012 at 6:52 pm

Best disciplined, most hard charging: We weren't talking about Strategic Air Command.


M167a1 September 9, 2010 at 6:06 pm

This Army vet say Oh-Rah… (oh whatever they do instead of HOOAH!)

The Marines know what they are about and that is fighting. They have stayed focused on being good at what they do and to the annoyance of the rest of the world they like to remind us, constantly.

Yes they are the Army's retarded little brother, scorned by their upper class cousin the Air Force and sent off to live with their gay uncle the Navy. They talk funny, dress funny and do know that a wall is not a "blukhead" and that the toilet is in a "latrine" not a "head."

But they excell at causing the deaths of enemies of the United States.

And we love them for it.


@Cr4shDummy September 11, 2010 at 5:49 am

I'm the son of a Zoomie, but that was hilarious Ditto, and well said.


Chops September 9, 2010 at 6:17 pm

Army-Navy- Air Force-Marines–The people in uniform defending the United States against All enemies.God Bless em and support them, no matter what branch of the service they're in.


ME2 September 12, 2010 at 4:37 pm

you forgot one there slick


Chops September 12, 2010 at 9:48 pm

Ur right–Coast Guard too.


blight September 9, 2010 at 6:49 pm

The Marines haven't done a good job selling the role of an amphibious force, and lean too much on their "we are proud marines" and their history as a ground-pounder fighting force. To be honest, the only "real" amphibious actions conducted by the Marines were WW2, and landing at Da Nang and serving as a "force in being" in Kuwait. In that time, the Airborne did WW2, Vietnam, Granada, Panama and GW1. In all likelihood they have done jumps since then.

I suspect many Marines could be turned into Reserve units with enhanced training schedules as opposed to being full-time Marines. This does not obviate the need to procure proper equipment, but when are we going to put 50k troops on the beach again? You may say "of course not, Marines are more than that"…but what is a Marine that a soldier isn't? Marines have been trying to sell themselves as a "second army" that complements the Army, but when budget cutters come in for the kill using that argument to suggest Marines are redundant, they fall back on their amphibious capability. So…you're a second army with amphibious or strike-from-ships-offshore capability?

If the Airborne was spun off onto its own branch, they would probably do what the Marine Corps does, play up its own history and its role in our nations role, and demand a large piece of the pie while insisting it is more than Airborne, yet can do things tanks cannot. However, they are shoehorned into the Army (and have suffered for it, but thats another story…)


phrogger September 9, 2010 at 8:33 pm

It is clear to me you have no idea what you're talking about…Marines as reserve units??? Airborne as its own branch?? Thank God you're not in charge…


blight September 9, 2010 at 8:40 pm

Are you suggesting the Marine Corps Reserve doesn't exist? Or that it's inconceivable that combat units can be placed in the reserves? Or is it psychological?


Former Marine September 10, 2010 at 9:25 am

Blight people like you are a blight on the Marine Corps. You ask what is a Marine that a soldier isn't? How about honor, pride, dedication, displine and training. The Marines accept the tasks given them and carry them out. They don't cry this isn't our mission. Maybe if you had the balls to be one you would understand.


M167A1 September 10, 2010 at 1:42 pm

Easy buddy.
Its a logical question given the subject.

We could make the same argument about the Army. Indeed they didn't used to call Marines "state department troops" for no reason. The Army stayed home, built raods and chased Mexicans and Indians and the Marines we the expidationary force. Somertimes large numbers of troops were needed overseas or the Marines were needed elsewhere and then the Army would go into action.

It is their value as a specialized force that they are rightly emphasizing. As for the attitude and honor portion of your argument. This is difficult to explain and quite subjective. I usually explain it in terms of motivation. Someone with the right attidue will continue to fight when others might quit. They will do things that other will not. Usually but not always this is positive.

The traditions of the Marines produce just such an attitude. Knock them back and they will just keep comming. Not because orders or we know we have to "take that hill" but "just because"


daniel September 10, 2010 at 2:04 pm

That's why their is tension, here you just said soldiers are without honor pride dedication disciple or training, I can tell you are none, fan boys talk like that not professionals.


STemplar September 10, 2010 at 9:53 am

Minor little scrap called Inchon I seem to recall.


praetorian September 10, 2010 at 10:50 am

STemplar is right , what about Inchon ?


Stogie September 10, 2010 at 9:12 pm

Let's not forget Tripoli in the early 1800's.


guest September 12, 2010 at 9:14 pm

Aside from the fact that there is an entire USMC reserve division, I feel that you are completely overlooking the importance of the MAGTF and the Marine Corps as an expeditionary force in readiness. The Marines operate as self-sustaining units (combat, support, air, etc.). Airborne units cannot operate for any extended period without soon being reinforced by ground forces. The idea that airborne units could operate alone without direct ground combat and logistic support is ridiculous. The invasion of Inchon (conducted at the request of Army General MacArthur) proves the viability of a modern amphibious invasion, even if one hasn't been necessary as of late.

In the end, it's always been the same argument by the Army to dissolve or absorb the Marine Corps. More money. If you're looking for proof, try Krulak's First to Fight. The arguments are always the same, and the Marines consistently throw it back. Simply put, the Marines are the most effective, cost-efficient method of winning.


Byron Skinner September 9, 2010 at 6:49 pm

Good Evening Folks,

Right now with a war in Afghanistan nobody is making any decisions about the future of the Marines. In fact it is assumed that the current two,three and four star will be long gone when it come time to do something. On a recent trip to DC I didn't hear anybody think that either Iraq or Afghanistan would be resolved before 2020 and that there is a likely hood that a third "small terrorist" war will pop up before then.

Sec. Gates tossed out the assignment to the Corps to tell him what they can do and do better then anybody else and he excluded the amphibious role and the being "Army Lite". The Marines are starting to respond, see the story about the Force Recon Platoon of 15th. MEU working off the USS Dubuque (LPD-8).

The Marines have made some poor procurement choices over the past 30 years and it's coming back to bite the in the six. Terminating the MV-22 contract which hasn't proved it worth, and not buying the EFV will help out a lot with the money problem.

The problems are of course money, the Marines are expensive and the Navy wants more ships and planes, we are now, in at best, a zero sum environment with funding.

Does the Navy want to support a 31-35 ship Marine Amphibious capacity and a 175,000 Marines, or have two additional carriers and 130 more planes and have a Naval Infantry force of about 75,000 and have 15-20 Amphibious Warfare Ships, which would still be the largest Naval Infantry/Marines in the word by better then a factor of two. This is only a single example of what the DoD is facing.

These are the hard choices for hard time that the DoD is going to have to make.


Byron Skinner


Colby McCormick September 9, 2010 at 8:06 pm

M167a1- I am a Marine, and even I fight that the funniest and most correct statement concerning our "relationship" with each other. Semper Fi brothers and sisters.


rrr September 9, 2010 at 8:22 pm

army are a buch of winers


blight September 9, 2010 at 8:41 pm

The branches are all whiners when they don't get the procurement budgets they want to fund the projects they want.


nick September 13, 2010 at 7:31 am

you're a weaner rrrrr


Infidel4LIFE September 13, 2010 at 12:30 pm

lol!! yeah, but everyone does at times. In the end, you do wat ya gotta do!!


Retired serviceman September 9, 2010 at 8:41 pm

rrr are you drunk or are you Corp educated? The Army doesn't toot it's own horn it just gets the job done.


Ron Allsbury September 10, 2010 at 12:24 pm

What do you mean doesn't toot its own horn every Sunday you see then at Nascar races and drag races standing their with their chest all puffed out and their nose in the air acting like they are god and God knows they are WRONG. Bunch of lowlifes!!


M167A1 September 10, 2010 at 2:28 pm

Aparently you have never met the Cav, the Airborne, the Rangers etc….


Foreign.Boy September 9, 2010 at 8:43 pm

Wow, you think the results the marines produce are guarantee enough.
They fight with less gadgets for compared to the army, they fight harder, and they are almost always are leading the fight.

Its funny, a friend of mine who is in an Army says the Marines fight as well as themselves and they think themselves better than the US Army.


Valenburg September 9, 2010 at 8:54 pm

Everybody is bent on pride for their branch when the whole premise of these issues is the toll a 10 year war is taking on the US and it's financials and ways to scale back to help keep supporting all troops abroad and at home. You would think the combination of two services FY budgets would help to support all troops in a better way when it comes to equipment ideas/testing/procurement for an all around better support system. Me being in the CG maybe I have a seperate view point, if we were absolved into the Navy for similiar reasons, it could be beneficial to us and our Mission (if we were to still act on our own mission premise) by supplying funds to a cash strapped service whose strap is only getting tighter.


St6eve Bailey September 9, 2010 at 8:59 pm

the Marines are only the tip of the spear if and when they are coming off a ship. Other then that it's the Army that goes first and usually Spec Forces, then Airborne and/or Rangers.

That's still a capability that's needed, but the question is how big a force. One huge problem the Marines have currently is they've been trying to do it all and everywhere. One of the biggest budget items is the Marine air force and one has to wonder if they can afford to maintain a separate set of planes and functions that are replicated by the existing USAF and USN aviation assets.

Now EVERY supporter of the USMC is going to go off on me for proposing the elimination of the sacred USMC Air component of the Air/Land combined arms team. But in today's day and age of precision weapons delivery, which right now the USAF is a lot better at, and the USN is as good at the Marines, so why are we maintaining an air component force that's totally redundant. Roll the damned planes into the air force and navy and go buy as many EFV's as you need.

Find the core mission again, which is attack from the sea, not the air as well.



phrogdriver September 10, 2010 at 5:57 pm

So is the Army going to give all its aircraft to the Air Force, too?

The Air/Ground MAGTF concept is almost as important as the amphibious capability. One-stop shopping with commonality of training and purpose. Moving those aircraft wouldn't save money–they'd still be there, just with different paintjobs, and you'd lose a huge capability in the process.

Only a small portion of the USAF focuses on CAS, whereas all USMC f/w assets train to it. Rotary-wing aircraft are how the Marines get from the ship to the objective in most cases.

Care to rethink that statement?


Rob September 11, 2010 at 2:32 am

yeah..get to and from aka trans, not CAS. i'm in afghanistan now and outside of Rockets, AGM114s, and 30cal/small arms from their beloved Helo's, the majority of CAS comes from USAF assets….GBU31, 38, and 12's from F-16/15's, 105 and 40MM from A/C-130's. outside of moving from ship to shore, the Marines all have to catch a ride in a USAF c-17 or c-130. Yes, Harriers can carry these assets too, but it's miniscule in comparison. most of the Army aircraft are helo's. some personnel transports, but nothing major. all services have their UAV's, but that's a whole different discussion.


@Cr4shDummy September 11, 2010 at 5:58 am

Exactly. The AF does atrmendou job, but you can't replicate the precision the Marines have with the MAGTF. That was a sharp juxtaposition in With the Old Breed. Marine pilots were able to pull some really audacious stuff off. Probably because they had the same esprit de corps with their fellow marines.

MAGTF is a vital component that should be expanded on, especially with airborne insertions.


Gregory Romeu September 12, 2010 at 9:25 pm

SB, Please name ONE situation other than WWII on D-Day, (Marines were busy in the Pacific with Japanese), where the Marines didn't hit the ground first? Then, please name ONE battle where we were on top of things and we still had the winning hand AFTER the Marines left? By all means, embellish on any and all incidents.


Andrew September 12, 2010 at 11:14 pm

Grenada, Baghdad, and if you replaced "Marines" with "82nd Airborne" then your second question would make sense because the USMC lost control of Fallujah when the 82nd handed it over to them.


Infidel4LIFE September 13, 2010 at 12:28 pm

I think they need to cut thier EFV force. How many amphib ops has there been since Inchon? I think MAGTF is essential, the Corps needs an air-component.


Retired serviceman September 9, 2010 at 8:59 pm

who's whining now?


M167A1 September 10, 2010 at 2:19 pm

Why we are all winning…. Thats how this is done…

You should know that. What were ya in the Air Force or something…..


Jim September 9, 2010 at 9:07 pm

Cut the Marine Corps and bleed the nation of its most precious asset. Since the founding of our nation we are and have always been of a great variety and mix. The Marine Corps represents the United States from how they fight, how they should act, and the what character should look like both on and off the battlefield. If you mix the Marine Corps in with the Army then you are doing a disservice to the American populace who “don’t need a Marine Corps” they “want a Marine Corps (Gen. Krulak).”


Jimmy Morris September 9, 2010 at 9:08 pm

When the crap hits the fan and the next President needs to get a tough job done the first question he asks is where are the carriers and how many marines do we have?If you cut defense spending start with all those high dollar Air Force planes and
put the money where the action is. Go Navy and take the Marines with you.


M167A1 September 10, 2010 at 2:26 pm

The irritating part is that the Navy seems to forget that in the absence of enemy ships they are a delivery service, not simply an air force with mobile landing fields.

I understand that when the budget axe is comming down you look after you own knitting first but everyone needs to remember the mission. Will the mission of serving the United State be advanced by absorbing the Marines into the Army?

Yes the budget will be simplified, but we will still pay for the men, the ships to carry them, the aircraft to support them. Why take something that works and break it. I have a hunch that in the end we would pay more in treasure and in tears than we would save.


H S Boring, PHC, USN September 12, 2010 at 2:08 am

I am a retired Navy Chief Petty Officer, and you can take your gay remarks about the Navy and stick 'em where the sun doesn't shine! Anybody who has to accuse a whole group of aberrent behavior must have something to worry about in his own makeup. Fair winds and following seas.


Retired September 9, 2010 at 9:16 pm

When all the cameras and flag waving is over, it's the Army yhat carries on the fight. By the way I agree with you on the girly boys in blue.


M167A1 September 10, 2010 at 1:58 pm

Yes the Jarheads would do well to remember this. This is why we get so frustrated with them. Stupid Prima Donnas get all the skinny girls and the saying is "Send in the Marines" not "Send in the Airborne." Behind the specialists come the generalists who do most of the work and not being specialists have to improvise as they go along. They of all people should be more mindful of the poor bloody infantry who don't get the fancy uniforms or their own theme song.

All kidding aside something would be lost if we just gobbled them into the Army. Part of it is focus and part of it is attitude. Yes they could keep the funny hats or have a "Marine" tab like the Airborne. Heck they could still call a latrine a head and the door a hatch if they wanted. But they would just be 11Bs who can swim really good. After all you know that we spend alot of time over comming the stupidity of a large organization.


Chief Boring September 12, 2010 at 2:14 am

My reply was meant for "Retired". On the subject at hand, I was in two Combat Camera Groups and trained with Marines. I'd rather go with them than any one else, except maybe SEALS. Chief Boring


Oblat September 9, 2010 at 9:43 pm

The marines are just a hollow version of the army inflated by the hot air of incessant PR. Without a mission they concentrate on being a Hollywood version of the army that ironically attracts the sorts of people that need help in their life.

It's not a coincidence that if get rid of it and you get rid of a lot of the useless equipment programs – VSTOL F35, Osprey, EFV etc etc.


M167A1 September 10, 2010 at 2:11 pm

Oh and the DIVAD, and the FCS where huge successes…


oxcart1 September 14, 2010 at 11:53 am

Thanks for making the point ! They were killed before further damage could be done. The Harrier, B model JSF and EFV should also be killed before they bleed the MC budget.

I support new programs so long as they further the mission. "Look at me I am different" hardware programs are foolish to all who look critically at how the DOD dollar is being spent.


carl September 9, 2010 at 9:46 pm

spend just 6 months with marines and you will understand this, wherever it came from: the marines started telling everyone about how great they were, pretty soon started believing it themselves, and ever since have set out to prove it.
i've done army and marine training. you should see the differences just with the conventional grunts – marines are more efficient, hold each other to higher standards, and have more discipline.
i have a friend who immigrated from central africa when he was young. he became a marine because they were the "wild-eyed tattooed freaks" that the rebels wouldn't eff around with – the only domestic or international force the rebels avoided.


johnny c September 9, 2010 at 10:15 pm

chops and bulldog and the rest you might want to get some facts. The SEALS lead the way and the enemy fears them the most when it comes to marine actions. The Marines are a leg of the Navy and always will be. They will get back to their roots soon enough there are more wars coming.


Chops September 9, 2010 at 11:16 pm

Fact is you are American Servicemen and I support ALL OF YOU


bbbbbb September 9, 2010 at 11:46 pm

Do you see a problem with you saying the enemy fears the SEALs the most when the enemy isn't supposed to know they're there?


lane September 10, 2010 at 2:04 am

haha , im pretty sure the enemy fears all US involvment, our planes will blow the **** out of them with precision because of that spec ops unit thats there, and then when our ground forces go in its game over.. but that was very funny


fig0341 September 10, 2010 at 1:21 pm

Johnny C, remember that the Marines gave the seals their first lessons.


M167A1 September 10, 2010 at 2:14 pm

Seals eh….
So THATS why SeaWorld is in San Deigo…..


phrogdriver September 10, 2010 at 6:01 pm

SEAL assets have a completely different mission than the Marine Corps and regular Army. Comparing the two is like comparing a sports car and a pickup truck. You've lowered this debate into an even lower level of stupidity.


Robert A. Fritts September 10, 2010 at 11:49 pm

On the subject of Movement knowledge. As a young trooper in Korea I would ask mama-san in the Noodle shop when we were going to have alerts or changes in FTX date & times. 100% accurate. We would alert, move to the DMZ east of Camp Kasey and there she would already be with her mobile noodle shop on wheels(and then trade for 1st generation MREs YUCK!).


Valenburg September 9, 2010 at 11:00 pm

^^^Who say's that can't happen with an integrated force?


Bill September 9, 2010 at 11:33 pm

We prefer in the rear with the gear, and it's not our fault no one wants to get in a good old naval battle with a CVBG.

As a Navy man myself, I'd rather see money being poured into this fellow http://www.raytheon.com/newsroom/feature/stellent/groups...
Rather than, old hat, building new ships, ship defense upgrades against rockets is smarter; they are cheap bangs for your buck when it comes to taking down billion dollar investments in Naval hardware.

Upgrade our phalanx systems and give more to the amphibians.


chaos0xomega September 9, 2010 at 11:52 pm

My opinion on the matter: We can't afford the Marine Corps AND the Army, and something's got to give.

Both the Army and the Marines are very good at their jobs, I don't think anyone will ever doubt that, but I have trouble understanding why we need two organizations that fulfill virtually identical roles and have such a large overlap in capability. True, each one has their nuances (the Army is more focused on overwhelming force, while the Marines are more about maneuver), but are the nuances really that important and different that a new more efficient organization could not be determined?

I would advocate moving the Marines to the Army, but not before reorganizing the Army and replacing a large chunk of its general staff with Marines. I would probably split off its fixed wing assets to the Air Force/Navy.

Failing that, give 'em all to the Air Force. We could use some real warriors to knock some sense into us, and in exchange we'll take 'em to space!

Not that it matters… since it sounds like the entire DoD will probably end up being reorganized into a single branch which has separate air, sea, and land arms.


Maybe-I-know September 10, 2010 at 12:35 am

A soldier is a soldier. They might receive special training to fight a certain way (urban, mountain, airborne, jungle, machine gunner, hostage rescue, sniper, ect) but they are still basically a soldier. Since 'special forces' have missions that the regular military doesn't have I think the amphibious assault mission should be rolled under the special forces command. Have the army supply the soldiers, navy supply the amphibious assault ships, and the air force/navy supply air support. The 3 branches work together in similar fashions for other type of special missions so why not with amphibious assault?


Anonymous September 10, 2010 at 1:09 am

The Marines will always be the ones to call when we need to fight the small wars. Let the Army keep their tanks, the Marines will have their rifles.


William C. September 10, 2010 at 1:54 am

Give up the Marine Corp and you might as well give up the nation. It is more than just the marines as a fighting force, it is about their legacy and what they represent.

The Marines should continue to work on being a lighter force that can rapidly deploy from the sea. In a more conventional conflict, they along with Army airborne units must be capable of fighting the enemy until the Army can bring in their heavy armor.


STemplar September 10, 2010 at 3:48 am

All these suggestions of roll one into another make me shudder. Why even spend the money? The USMC needs to shrink and focus on what the Army doesn't do. That's their mission. Forward deployed mobile fighting forces on floats already in critical regions. That's their gig. No need to transfer things around, but the Marines do need a diet, and get over the notion of beach landings in the Pacific.


chaos0xomega September 10, 2010 at 9:44 am

The problem is that there is virtually nothing for the Marines to do that the Army doesn't do. The Army has its own landing craft (and a lot more of then the Marines do as I recall), and last I checked the Army is deployed in areas all over the world, just like the Marines are. The only real difference is that the Army doesn't have troops riding around on amphibs at all times.

If the Marines are going to stick around as a separate service, it can't be as a land combat force, as they will always be treated as a second Army, that is inevitable. With the current budget cuts and ongoing conflict(s), the United States cannot afford to maintain a second infantry force that only gets used when we need to land troops on a beach. If the Marines want to get lighter and focus on a specific mission, thats fine, but they have to remain relevant in the realities of today's world, and can't retreat to their boats and twiddle their thumbs.

IF they remain a separate service, I think they should go back to their roots of protecting ships, as well as becoming the "brown water navy." Take over watch duties, VBSS, riverine/fastboat operations from the Navy, and focus on conducting anti-piracy operations for the time being.


STemplar September 12, 2010 at 5:14 pm

The riding around in Amphibs though when you think about it, is a lot of forward deployed mobile combat power. To replace it with the Army would require a huge investment to simply duplicate it. That's my point is it may be the one thing that truly separates the Corps from the Army, but it is a pretty big thing, and it would be money wasted I think to simply move the option to the Army.


Tony C September 10, 2010 at 8:11 am

The Marines can be absorbed by the US Army and the US Navy will save money to spend on ship building. This works provided there are no suprises (like Pearl Harbor) in the equation.
I am a US Navy veteran and I can tell you from first hand experience that the US Marines take their jobs very serious. They consider themselves an elite fighting force and they don't seem to care where in the world that may happen to be. WikiLeaks seems to have exposed some lackluster esprit de corp in teh US Army as of late.


Maybe-I-know September 10, 2010 at 8:13 pm

What is there job?


surgpa September 10, 2010 at 8:14 am

As an Army officer, I say that the US defense formula needs to maintain a vibrant and diverse ass-kicking capability. The US Marines are the MASTERS of amphibious warfare. Why are we even discussing downsizing or eliminating one of our most capable warrior units? The thought of a diminished US Marine force is criminal on the part of the political class.


darkares87 September 13, 2010 at 1:26 am

exactly…why is that difficult for some to understand I wonder?


roscoe p coletrain May 5, 2012 at 1:12 pm

You do realize that the army actually did more amphib ops in ww2 than the Marine Corps? Not to mention the biggest amphib op in history. Even in the south pacific the army did more amphib ops on bigger islands with more japs. When the Japs gained a foothold on the Alleutian Islands which I believe is part of the North American continent, it was the army's 7th divison that removed them. The 7th division wasn't originally trained for amphib ops but to fight in North Africa. At the last minute they were trained and sent to the Alleutians. Not only that but they didn't have cold weather gear even though it was damn cold on these islands near Alaska. You don't need some magical training to charge up a beach.


Richard September 10, 2010 at 8:44 am

Politians do a great job at creating conflict everytime they get involved. Rich vs poor, black vs white, union vs non-union, gay vs straight, man vs woman, and the list goes on. Now its Marines vs Army. They pick the winners and losers.
Both the Army and Marines should be strong and eliminating the Marines should not even be thought of. The government does need to cut spending. They should look elswhere instead of our national security.


bklyn September 10, 2010 at 10:46 am

The Navy has been taking over MC duties since they started the seals in 1962 doing what Marines were already doing and are on the same mission now


phrogdriver September 10, 2010 at 6:03 pm

The SEALs don't do the same things as the Marine Corps at all, with the exception of some overlap among MARSOC, which is a tiny command.

Your statement is imbecilic at best.


Sheldon Nadler September 10, 2010 at 11:24 am

The United Staes land locked the Marines in Vietnam and we kicked some serious ass. The Marines are a mobile force that should be used in that capacity whether it is on the land, sea, or air. We are the first to fight and usually the first to die. The Marines have always been a sea going outfit and NOT garrison troops. Let them do their job and get rid of the GOVERNMENT dead wood.


Maybe-I-know September 10, 2010 at 8:22 pm

EXACTLY what training does a soldier get for amphibious warfare that the 'normal' soldier doesn't get?


rosoe p coletrain May 5, 2012 at 1:15 pm

Sorry Sheldon but the army fought more ground combat in Vietnam than the marines ever did. In fact the army has fought more ground combat than the marines period. They are not the first to fight.


USMC93 September 10, 2010 at 12:03 pm

The Marines are a department of the Navy, the Men's Department. Ha!

"Take me to the Brig. I want to see the real Marines." Chesty Puller


Phil September 10, 2010 at 12:33 pm

I need some help here. Step one in any amphibious invasion is that you must first have air superiority, right? So, if you have air superiority, then why would you choose an amphibious invasion of a defended beach instead of an air assault? With an air assault I understand that you can only land light forces, but with fire support from their air forces, they should be able to fight back to the beach and clear the way for the slow transports to bring ashore the heavy stuff.

Seriously, I’d like to hear your comments.


Robert A Schwehr September 10, 2010 at 12:42 pm

Unbelievable that this is even being thought of never mind even being seriously considered.What is the meaning of the words "enemies foreign and Domestic".You think some trial balloons are launched during wartime by people inamicable to our country?Hope this trial baloon is deflated,sounds like someday maybe even by an RPA or UAS could assist somewhere in this difficult and recurring WARTIME problem—–former ANG member,Grateful as hell for the Marine Corps.USCG combat veteran —US ARMY officer still serving.


tallil08 September 10, 2010 at 12:54 pm

To pvtrick who said "the navy and air forse are just delivery agents at best", you may want to check and see how many In Lieu Of (ILO) taskings with the Army are being filled by the Air Force. The Army doesn't have enough people to fill the billets, so they are tasking the other branches to help. Many of my friends in the Air Force have been running convoy ops for years now. Does this sound like "delivery service". Also, "delivery service"? When was the last time you heard of FedEx, DHL, or UPS providing close air support for the ground pounders?
A s far as the USMC goes, I support everything they do and do so well. My saying for them is that it takes a special kind of a person to be a Marine, and I am damn proud there are people like them to do the job.
20+ USAF


Joe Boyum September 10, 2010 at 1:02 pm

Marines are the toughest infantrymen on the planet. Just ask them they will tell you.
All joking aside, still no one has been able to argue that there is: 1. a multi-billion dollar a year need for a non-raiding amphibious capability, 2. A lack of existing capability in forced entry operations capability as represented by rangers or conventional airborne, 3. The need for a third fixed wing and fourth rotary wing (and potentially a third or fourth armed UAV) arm…emotional arguments are not arguments at all unless you simply want to guilt or shame the other party into thinking your way. They have no business in fiscal decisions or discussions of military capabilities.


Robert A Schwehr September 10, 2010 at 1:09 pm

Unbelievable that this is even being seriously considered!The United States Marine Corps is the most I repeat" the most elite military force in our nation`s arsenal".This comment comes from a former member of the USCG,USN,ANG and a still serving combat veteran now a tour of duty with the regular ARMY .Many ARMY combat veterans would never seriously denigrate the Marine Corps,inter- service rivalry not with standing. Some of us owe our lives to the Corps,the Nation owes an immense debt to the United States Marine Corps,if you don`t believe that visit a VA hospital!


daniel September 10, 2010 at 2:06 pm

The reverse is also true soldiers have saved many marines, some Marine units are better than some Army units, Some Army units are better that some Marine units. The fan boy rivarly is from that who havent btdt or have been there and sat on the fob


Dylan September 10, 2010 at 1:12 pm

The Marine Corps should be switched from the Dept of the Navy to the Dept of the Army and into the Army. This is not to say one the Marine Corps. The Marine Corps are just a speciality in fighting force, just as the Army has it's specialty: the Airborne Corps.

The Marine Corps should be integrated into the Army as a special corps: Like there is the Airborne Corps, there could be the Marine Corps. Of course, the Marine Corps would have to adhere to Army standards but it's the best route for putting proper use of ground forces. Just like the Airborne doesn't always parachute in, the Marines don't have to always come in amphibiously. (This allows them to maintain their "Few, Proud" motto stuff while being used more efficiently under a unified command).

This is coming from a U.S. Army Soldier.


blight September 10, 2010 at 1:46 pm

Integrating the Marines into the Army would probably cause the navy to unload all of their amphibious vessels and buy another aircraft carrier. The Navy already divested itself of LST's and minesweepers after the Cold War, and used the savings for surface warfare.

Then the Marines would be totally screwed like the Airborne, who lost out on the AGS after the Sheridans disappeared and have been doing the Humvee thing like the regular army. If they were folded into Army, would Army let them have EFV or Osprey?


blight September 10, 2010 at 1:52 pm

Retract on MCMs. All 14 still commissioned and still quite new. They're just…low profile.


ColdWarVet September 10, 2010 at 1:40 pm

The Corps is what you send when you need real War-Fighters. Not some place where women Drill Sargents are training men for combat and not having been there themself.


Sgt. Gaynerd, USMC September 10, 2010 at 2:52 pm

Enough words, if any branches of the U.S. military weren't entirely staffed by glorified Boy Scouts, they would settle this dispute in open internecine warfare.


ChrisUSMC September 10, 2010 at 3:18 pm

The Army can't be everywhere in the world and the Air Force can't alaways get them there, however when you got a fleet pre-positioned and augmented with a MEF or detachment there-of, you've got both the air and land element in place in the event there needed until the Air Force and Army can mobilize in the event they're needed(Conventional deterrant and 1st strike capability) in any potential conflict in the world.
Integrating or elimainating the USMC is "nuts". That would be like transfering the Airborne ops. of the Army to the USAF. The Marines are the limited sea,air and land based fighting force that is mobile enough(thanks to the Navy and Air Force) to fight at the drop of a hat.
The Marines have alaways had to do more with less and this will probably never change. Besides ask how many of the current Soldiers in the Army & Airmen in the Air Force would be willing to sit on a ship months at a time and take part in the inter-service rivalry that the Navy/Marines continuously trade licks over. Besides, the last time the Army was on a ship in force, was crossing the English Channel. ??? OK soldier grab your sea bag. ???


chaos0xomega September 10, 2010 at 6:47 pm

I can't think of a situation where the Air Force can't get them there. These days we have more C-130s, C-5s, and C-17s than we know what to do with, and we're still buying C-27s and between the us and the Navy, we have more than enough capability to break down any nations air defenses (seriously, a single aircraft carrier carries more combat aircraft than many countries entire air forces possess). And the Army maintains several units on 24 hr standby (in fact, I think its even shorter than 24 hr).

As for airborne to the Air Force, it could work out very well. It would, at the very least, force the Air Force to acquire better air-ground aircraft, since we would be more invested in the lives of infantrymen. WW2 Fallschirmjaeger forces acquitted themselves very well (even though they didn't engage in large airborne assaults following crete).


Riceball September 13, 2010 at 11:34 am

While it's true that the Airborne can get places faster than the Corps can the problems comes in that in a forced entry situation the Airborne goes in with only what they can carry on their backs where as the Corps can get their with armor, artillery, air support, and sustain themselves for an extended period before needing resupply. The ideal situation would be to deploy the Corps first and while we tie up the enemy forces on the beach the Airborne &/or Rangers can drop in to secure an airfield and then both forces hammer the enemy between them and then we can land follow on forces by both air and sea.


Subutai September 10, 2010 at 3:48 pm

Quick, name the last time the marines forced their way ashore in an amphibious landing. As Sec. of Defense Gates said, if the US cannot defend itself with a trillion dollar military, outspending all nations combined, we don't deserve to be protected. At some point, throwing dollars at the pentagon weakens the very nation they are supposed to defend. The most highly decorated marine in corps history, Gen. Smedley Butler, said it best. "war is a racket, and it benefits the few at the expense of the many."


Jeff M September 10, 2010 at 7:53 pm

They did the amphibious landing thing in the first part of operation iraqi freedom, although it was mostly feigned while ground forces came in larger numbers from every other border. The thing is the water assault doesn't need to be employed, it just needs to be an option available to us in order for it to do it's magic. Play any strategy game with land/sea/air units. If your enemy has no capability to assault from the sea then you're going to reallocate. If the US is going to maintain a military at all we might as well capitalize on our versatility and technology in this way. Same with missile defense, you don't actually have to use it but Rumsfeld famously quoted that "by it's very existence" it does what it's supposed to do.


mgunns September 10, 2010 at 4:09 pm

If it wasn't for the USMC the navy would not be needed. Anything the navy can do the airforce and army can do with out all the money out lay. Sorry navy but your job is to get Marines to places where they can kill people. PPS sure helped the Army in the first months of D/S and D/S. No I'm not stuttering. Go ahead and pull the Marines out of Iraqu and AF and see what happens. It seems like this has happened many times before, I don't think it can really happen, if my ole memory serves me right. Get rid of the Corps and you better learn a new language and different money.
I'd rather have my sister a whore house than belong to another service.
Semper Fi


Pete September 10, 2010 at 4:55 pm

Airborne this and airborne that, but the reality remains that you already have Navy/Marine Corps fleet located off some coast, anywhere at any time with full air and armor support. The Army needs extra time to put all those assets on site. Sure, airborne can be there, but how long until their support arrives?
BTW, isn't the Army about to or has it already got rid of Bayonet and knife training because the feel they don't need it anymore? My point here is the Army's mindset towards conventional combat training is way different from the Marine Corps mindset. This is what makes the Marine Corps a better fighting force, they never forget the fundamentals of fighting and don't rely heavily on modern day electronics to their job.
As for who fights first, The President has the abilities to utilize the Marines for 30 days before declaring an official war, which makes the Marine Corps Combined Arms a pretty lethal deterrent and especially because they are already floating somewhere off the coastline. Special forces units do go in but are used to gather information and call in strategic air strikes. But once the gloves come off, the Marines are there with ALL support elements in tact and fighting. That's what they mean by first to fight!


STemplar September 10, 2010 at 5:06 pm

The President does not declare war, the Congress does. Under the War Powers Resolution, the President can order US forces into combat for up to 60 days with a 30 day withdrawal period, if the US is under attack or serious threat. Beyond that a declaration of war or authorization from Congress for further action is required. It does not apply exclusively to a branch of service.


Bob September 12, 2010 at 5:34 pm

I just enlisted in the Army so I've been paying attention to the changes to Army Basic. They got rid of bayonet training but increased that amount of hand to hand training. As far as I know knife fighting is still taught it wasn't listed in any of the changes that I read.


Dylan September 12, 2010 at 9:59 pm

First to Fight = Army. Check: Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom. 'Nuff said.


Tommy Sands September 13, 2010 at 3:38 pm

Wrong! 'Nuff said!
USMC 1975-1979
USAF 1980-1996


daniel September 13, 2010 at 8:09 pm

sweet argument with citations


Tim Adkison September 10, 2010 at 5:13 pm

Water and Army. I don't think it makes grammatical sense to put those words together besides to say that…you cant put those words together.


blight September 11, 2010 at 12:21 pm

Tell it to the men who died on Omaha Beach. Its about training, not your branch.


darkares87 September 12, 2010 at 4:44 am

you mean like the soliders who drowned before they even got ashore? because of the army rush to give them amphibious training. The fact is that D-Day was a tactical/military blunder.


darkares87 September 12, 2010 at 4:45 am

*soldiers* sorry


chaos0xomega September 10, 2010 at 6:35 pm

Agreed. I see no reason to not keep the Marines as semi-autonomous within the Army, let them keep their uniforms, their traditions and their pride… but make 'em part of the army. It would be kinda like Army spec ops…. but instead of berets, it would just be a completely different uniform.


Jeff M September 10, 2010 at 7:39 pm

I think they need to incorporate the MV-22 into all branches of service and begin replacing helicopters where this faster alternative would provide benefits. The EFV is a unique craft and I think that's probably the only thing that defines the marines these days, but it would be so easy to defeat with shore cannons, it's the culmination of almost a century of brooding over our inadequacies during the invasion of normandy. If I were planning a war the hovercrafts loaded up with bradleys would make more sense. Transform the EFV into a coastal patrol vehicle and assign it to the coast guard in limited numbers.


Rich September 10, 2010 at 9:14 pm

If they eliminate the Marines, then who will guard the streets in heaven?


Devil Dog September 12, 2010 at 7:42 pm



RIP KP September 10, 2010 at 9:34 pm

Now that most of you have sized each others testicles up, I can clear the air. Each branch serves its intended purpose and maybe more. Airforce, you do a good job at air superiority and transport. Navy, you do the samething but in and on the ocean. Army, you do have the Rangers and Green Berets, but you do make a better occupational "prolonged war" force, then a quick reaction. As a former Marine, I might be a little bias. However, the Marines have their own C-130s, fighters, rotary wings, amphibs, tanks, light armor. Granted we might need some docs, C-5s, and a ship or two but we can get it done overnight.


Gregoru Romeu September 12, 2010 at 5:08 pm

Ooh-Rah Devil Dog!


mitter September 11, 2010 at 12:10 pm

I was with the 24Mau in Beirut Lebanon, the Marines are the best fighting force in the world, if you need money take it from the boys in blue (Air Force)..I'm retired Navy


craig September 11, 2010 at 1:14 pm

First to Fight.
Last to Leave.
Semper Fi!


Dylan September 12, 2010 at 10:01 pm

Army was first in Afghanistan and Iraq. /thread


OIF_to_USC September 11, 2010 at 10:54 pm

Roger that Marine. I was in the Navy submarine service during the Cold War, served in the National Guard briefly after that. Finally, at the age of 49, I served as a DoD civilian specialist assigned to Combat Logistics Battalions, Marine Logistics Group, I MEF throughout Al-Anbar, Iraq prior to, and during the surge. So, I have some good cross-sectional experience throughout my life of the services in war and in relative peace. The Marines hold themselves to a high standard. Nobody holds them to that standard higher than themselves. Notable, every Marine from the Marine commandant to every newly minted Marine private knows who they are and what their mission is. Meanwhile, the Navy is a two tiered service; the "Blue Water Navy," of which I was once a part, sees maritime warfare as a brief but epic battle with one or more Blue Water maritime enemies of similar capability. They see war on the high seas fought devastatingly fast and deadly with a clear winner emerging within days or even hours after the shooting starts. [See Part 2 ...]


OIF_to_USC September 11, 2010 at 10:55 pm

Part 2: Totally contrary to the “Doomsday Scenario,” the "Total Force Navy" also sees a "global dynamic" in maritime warfare which includes an amphibious warfare fleet and the Marine MEUs and more comprehensive MEFs as the spear that plunges deep into the heart of the enemy. Meanwhile Navy carrier task forces would provide continuous air support until Navy and Marine air, medical and logistics assets afloat get established ashore in support of the shooters already engaged. All of that can be done faster than moving the Army’s mechanized infantry and armored divisions with their round-out and air brigade components via the Navy’s Military Sealift Command and the Air Force’s Air Mobility Command over a period of many weeks. Finally, the problem here does not originate with the Army or the Air Force. The problem is that of “some” thinkers in the Navy that have yet to decide what kind of maritime force they want the Navy to be. They have to decide if they want to just be that “Blue Water Doomsday Force,” or a comprehensive “Total Force Navy.” I hope that the latter decision wins out.


OIF_to_USC September 11, 2010 at 11:07 pm

Part 1: Roger that Marine. I was in the Navy submarine service during the Cold War, served in the National Guard briefly after that. Finally, at the age of 49, I served as a DoD civilian specialist assigned to Combat Logistics Battalions, Marine Logistics Group, I MEF throughout Al-Anbar, Iraq prior to, and during the surge. So, I have some good cross-sectional experience throughout my life of the services in war and in relative peace. The Marines hold themselves to a high standard. Nobody holds them to that standard higher than themselves. Notable, every Marine from the Marine commandant to every newly minted Marine private knows who they are and what their mission is. Meanwhile, the Navy is a two tiered service; the "Blue Water Navy," of which I was once a part, sees maritime warfare as a brief but epic battle with one or more Blue Water maritime enemies of similar capability. They see war on the high seas fought devastatingly fast and deadly with a clear winner emerging within days or even hours after the shooting starts.


Stu Drash September 12, 2010 at 12:45 am

We are not a legacy in our own minds. We have proven it over 235 years of our history serving this nation and its people. I do not expect you to stand in "awe" of our accomplishments. Yes, their are the so called "dirt-bags and terds" of every service. Hell, I believe that only half of the Marines I have served with and trained should be a Marine, but that doesn't negate the fact that we have a true warrior-like culture that constantly strives for perfection in every aspect of our lives.


Stu September 12, 2010 at 12:45 am

I respect the other services greatly, but let me leave you with these questions: 1) Who has the only segregated gender training in the United States for boot camp? 2) Who has every one of their service members regardless if they are infantry-bound or not, complete infantry training after boot camp and before their military occupation schools? 3) Who has more tact and discipline? ANSWER- The United States Marine Corps! The Army is an excellent service, but I have also served with them and I've researched from primary sources, their lower standards in moral, physical and mental qualities needed in order to become a army of one. You have to lower standards to have over a million man army, compared to a more unique, smaller force of 241,000 active and reserve Marines. That is all.


w.r September 12, 2010 at 9:57 am

i might be a future marine so i think that the budget war onhand is crazy. yes it is a huge deal but congress needs to step up, take the blame, and think of a way to help our guys. like lincoln said that a house divided against itself will not stand. and that the men who give their lives for us should never die in vain.


skins September 12, 2010 at 12:24 pm

lets see, every time the army has got there asses handed to them the marines tend to pull them out. as for the army airborne rangers, ya you can land in any combat zone of your choosing. but like the 10Th mountain divison in afghanistan, if ya’ll didn’t have those marines to push the line your asses wouldn’t last to much longer waiting on the regular army. besides take a good look fellow soldiers, thous aren’t army pucks guarding those embassies. but hey the budget we receive comes mainly from the navy (thats no lie) so with all the tech the army maintains, we do it with less and get it done regardless the situation. cause we all now the navy spends their money on ships more than personal. so for the ranger i’m glad we got you to pull the slack for the rest of the army, but when ya’ll can get the rest of the ******* army to pull their weight, then you may have a reason to commit on this situation.


Vitor September 12, 2010 at 1:09 pm

"The Hoover administration, always interested in saving money,"

Hoover administration had deficits. Hoover was far, far from being a pro free market.


Gregory Romeu September 12, 2010 at 9:17 pm

With over 22 MILLION military Veterans in this nation, MANY of which are Marines… Just call us ALL up and see whose ass hits the deck first. Semper Fidelis!


Earl Lewis September 12, 2010 at 10:19 pm

In this day and age of terror, we will need ALL our resources…not cut them up.

Just because the amphibious part of a campaign is not needed DOES NOT mean it should be eliminated. If it is cut down, shredded, or eliminated, we leave our fighting capability open to impending doom. As a former Marine, I experienced the amphib. prowess of my brethren, and with a little tweaking, can be needed WHEN the time is right. Of course, the time is not now, but situations can and do change over time.


STemplar September 13, 2010 at 1:01 am

If keeping a capability we won't use means less resources for other capabilities we need or equipment, then yes it should be eliminated. That is just common sense. The budget is not infinite.


Oblat September 13, 2010 at 12:55 am

From a military standpoint the marines should have been disbanded decades ago. But there were good economic reasons why it remained. The Marines esoteric one of kind projects were ideal for maximizing stockholder profits and it provided a use full way to employ those that couldn't compete in the real economy.

But things are changing, while the drain on the economy that useless capabilities cause doesn't seem relevant to those who are already facing burger flipping as an alternative career – it matters to the rich and politically powerful. There are now too many poor and working class to be soaked up and the profit margins are falling rapidly on the defense contracts. The marines look like a bad investment.

The marines served their purpose during the good times, but those days are over, the whole armed forces is going to be transitioning out of a socialist worker paradise model and a silly call and soaking up too few of the economic losers just isn't going to cut it in a global economy.


lewis April 15, 2011 at 9:42 pm

a maritime landing force with ground, air, and combat service support that can get a toehold and fight for 90 days without outside support sounds like a good investment to me


retired September 13, 2010 at 9:29 am

If all the BS the Marines tell you is true we wouldn't need any other force! The MEU's seem a rather expensive floating dormatory. I wonder what mode is faster-aircraft or ship? And I for one be in front of any Marine to "hit the deck" if needed. The do more with less is their typical Hollywood mantra!


Riceball September 13, 2010 at 11:49 am

The thing that you're (conveniently) forgetting that while air is faster sea is more efficient since even our heaviest lift aircraft like the C-17 & C-5 are limited in how much they can carry at one time. I could be mistaken but at best it's like 1 maybe 2 M1s, 2 – 3 Bradleys or Strykers, that's an awful lot of aircraft flying an awful lot of sorties to move any sort of meaningful number of heavy forces into a theater of operations and that's assuming we even have the luxury of an airport to work from.


Mike September 13, 2010 at 9:52 am

Interesting comments and replies. All of the branches of the service serve their purpose and do so proudly. As far as I know none of our braches of the service are fighting the war on terror on their own. All are placing their lives in danger for our country and for that I and all Americans should be grateful. What the Marine Corps does well is a lot with little funding and less people. What the Marine Corps does extremely well is deploy in a self supported organization with Infantry, Artillery, Armor and Air assets that continuously train together and support each other so they show up self sustainable. Budget cuts will come and cut backs are bound to happen. The Marine Corps as the smallest of the big three is the logical choice for the cutters to look at. Perhaps another point of view would be how do the Marines do the same with less and how can we apply that to all the branches of service. Thank you again to all of the service members past present and future who put themselves in harms way. It is a shame that people who have not done the same will be deciding their future.


Mike Culver September 13, 2010 at 10:27 am

The truth of the matter is more Army Soldiers die in no-combat related mishaps and mor Soldiers have been convicted of war crimes than the Marines. Marines are traditionally placed in the areas of the worst fighting, this is why more die in combat. Fallujah is a good example of this. The 82 Air Born was there a year befor the Marines took control. Somalia, "Black Hawk Down" also comes to mind. Bigger is not neccesarily better. You are also forgetting the fact that the Marine Corps is the only branch of the US military that can go to war without Congressional approval. This is not something to be taken lightly. The facts speak for themselves.


Richard September 13, 2010 at 10:48 am

It seems the only reason the Army dudes who want to eliminate the Marines is to get rid of the competition. Jealousy I think. Why isn't there any talk about eliminating the Rangers or Green berets or some other redundant units in the Army.


daniel September 13, 2010 at 8:03 pm

who in the Army said that. The converstation was about budget cuts and the MC fanboys went all armieezz suxor marieeenseee all the way


Infidel4LIFE September 13, 2010 at 12:24 pm

The Corps has always struck me as a force that does the most with less. They always find a way, and they are underequipped. I was not a Marine, but seems to me they gotta fight to keep thier funding. MAGTF is a real good concept, they carry everything they need. Why leave them hangin in the wind? they WILL find a way, im hoping. Alotta those Marines are gonna ride to battle in helos, a compromise somewhere? Air-Assault just for the Army??


lewis April 15, 2011 at 9:34 pm

marines pioneered vertical envelopment too


skins September 13, 2010 at 12:24 pm

well let see, we've heard from the rangers, airborne, and green berets. anybody hear from the rest of the army? as for budget cuts, why would the marines be the first the government comes to if we don't do more for less. the biggest budgets in the military are the airforce, army and navy. the marines always get the scrapes from the budget, pay checks from the navy and anything deemed outdated from the army. but hey everything that comes out of our mouths is BS(marines). so why is it that a former marine can go to any branch of the service and doesn't have to do their bootcamp, who guard those embassies around the world along with the white house, and without a declaration of war what branch of the military is called on first excluding SF who are always active in remote locations. PR? you can only shot th BS so far before someone figures you out, unless you boys from the army buy everything you hear.


steve September 13, 2010 at 12:34 pm

Only the uninformed, or a plain idiot would attempt to belittler the importance of teh Marines as our most EFFECTIVE fighting force. If only the Army would use half of the Marines training expertise, they too would be better off than now? How can they be so effective, and the Army so ineffective, without some Congressional interests?


daniel September 13, 2010 at 8:00 pm

nice undocumented opinion


IYAOYAS September 13, 2010 at 1:03 pm

There are two kinds of people.

U.S. Marines… and everybody else.


blight September 13, 2010 at 2:14 pm

Services will never disappear because everybody knows somebody in the service, so HASC is never going to emasculate any of the branches. Instead, we'll just borrow more money from overseas. This is more of a "defense" thread than a "tech" thread, and the same arguments would pop up if this was posted here or on say, strategypage.


A Woman Marine September 13, 2010 at 3:12 pm

I remember the draw downs the Marines experience in the late 70's and earky 80's, We could not get parts, so we would go to where the Army and Air Force got rid of their equipment and cannablize them to make our equipment work. Some of the Reservists had skills in which they could create a makeshift part that worked. Marines could make do with what they had. What the Marines need to do is to figure out where our next war or world war is going to be and decide how we can shine. I hazard a guess it will be Middle East, Korea, or Asia in general.


Luke T September 13, 2010 at 3:32 pm

Army and Navy wasnt for me
Air Force was too easy
I needed a life with a little bit more
I need a life that is hardcore
Thats why I joined the fu*k*ng MARINE CORPS!!!



twright2 September 13, 2010 at 4:12 pm

The American People appreciate that. Not a college education, not traveling to see the word on the governments dime, not flying in the "wild blue yonder". Fighting and winning battles is why the USMC is wanted by the American People. Notice I said winning battles and not wars. Winning wars is the responsibility of big army and once they begin to advertise that, then the American people will see the army in a different light. Stop advertising college, and all of that other crap. Tell it like it is. You are there to win America's wars. to kill the enemy…..


fdhandy September 13, 2010 at 4:14 pm

ok now the usmc has been around for 230 plua yrs . live them the way .they are just as good as any of the rest of the branchs they have there part to play and do it well .just as the army navy air force so let nots put them down lets help keep them together. o by the way i do like the idea of starting with the top agetting rid if the dead wood at the top ret. ssgt usmc. bulldog70 fred handy


M.R. September 13, 2010 at 5:32 pm

Sarcasim must mean that you have never been a soldier, once a Ranger always a Ranger! I am proud to take my leadership skills not only to the National Guard but also to the Officer Corps. It is known throughout the military that a high percentage of enlisted soldiers end up making some of the best officers. I might be wrong about how your reply reads but it sounds like to me that you feel that the National Guard has no right being in the same discussion as their active duty brothers, which would mean that you are wrong. With the National Guard mission growing everyday you could view them as the 5th branch of the military. Try serving before you start bashing!


Tim Adkison September 14, 2010 at 11:26 pm

Instead of cutting the best fighting force in the world because there are to few of them. Maybe you could increase there numbers and budget and make them the largest fighting force? Huh what do you think?? This is called common sense!


jasper September 15, 2010 at 4:50 pm

You'll run out of MARINES if you keep cutting them, and there will be nothing when you need them most


obx'r September 15, 2010 at 6:43 pm

history repeats itself, then a war happens and the marine corps regains its honor. the corps is the only force the president can send without congressional act. if moved to army that would end. if moved to the army the corps would be like the half the garbage the troops have to modify because some desktop warrior got pushed thru to have theirself immortalized, the army did not want rubber tired combat vehicles, but the marines proved it, the army spent millions of dollars to redesign the m60 machine gun, only to find out, post fact finding that the air force and army could not read the label on CLR bottle to shake prior to use to suspend the teflon. the air force had to have the a10 budgetarily forced on them in 1988 appropriations, army originally operated a10's. army talks up apache, but bought 3 super cobras for each one and apaches originally used comms setup as soviet forces. coms was to rear and not to each other, hence comco on shoulder, air to air comms. you can't fly everywere in the world to drop off paratroopers, there are enough weapons systems to knock out the entire force, airburst nuke. marine corps CAS has wheels on back, air force wants to be as high as needed to get laser guided on target. the USS United States was first super carrier, but congress took money away and put it into b36 air force bomber that never saw significant combat use.the reason that special ops forces work is because they train with the theory the marines live by. going into kuwait and iraq, marine recon units was moving hot and fast along with other special forces units. the marine corps is not a training plan, but an state of mind. on the british marine commandos their training time is because the basic education level is lower, and as an individual shows superior leadership. he is normally offered OCS. their training is not basic knowledge, but they are given all training to manuever around the globe and be fully combat ready. the demise of the corps is the end of this country, sorry for all you army and air force types.


TeXan September 16, 2010 at 1:30 am

Marines have about 1/2 the manpower of the army.. yet still do yeoman's showmanship and chest beating. Methinks they have no unique mission ie the duplicate of army mission. Look where they be today.


SSB September 17, 2010 at 12:29 pm

If if the government we all love and support would stop and get it's head out of it own buttocks for two seconds, they would see that there are way too many generals, etc. brass at the top not doing a damn thing to earn their pay. Send these distinguished gentlemen off to retirement already. Let close some of our forward bases in other countries. And for god sakes, let stop funding cold war programs that don't yield any returns.

Canceling the F-22 Raptor and not the Osprey was one of the dumbest things our government ever did. We should be funding Future Warrior Programs full force for assymetric warfare. Not building bloated, cost overrun carrier battle groups that have no enemy to fight. We can build smaller, faster, deadlier ships and pocket carrier wings. We should be developing more vehicles like the Stryker and less like the M1-A2 Abrams.


Adrian_Wainer November 11, 2010 at 4:45 pm

The F-22 was built to fight follow ons for the Su-27 and MiG 29 which never came in to existence, because the USSR imploded. so there was good reason for canceling the program. You are talking about asymmetric warfare but you are championing a high tech air-superiority fighter in the shape of the F-22, which seems somewhat conflicted. For fighting an asymmetric war against a low conventional maritime capability enemy, supercarriers can make a lot of sense. The problem is that they lost the aircraft which were the most suitable for that role, the F-14 Tomcat and A-6 intruder.


Terminal Leave September 19, 2010 at 9:04 am

The US military would be wise to keep the Marine Corps a separate entity. In my experience as a Marine instructing at a joint-service school, I see first hand the different organizational cultures. Broadly speaking, the Marine Corps culture retains its combat characteristics in all settings. On the individual level, the typical Marine's mindset and perspective is totally different than his sailor, soldier, airman peers; there is a certain aggressiveness that the others lack. Although the Marine Corps is probably operationally redundant, I think it would be difficult to find a replacement unit with the same war-fighter qualities.


Robert A. Fritts October 22, 2010 at 4:46 pm

Yes they adhered to USMC standards in the Invasion of Iraq and fought to a standstill with unorganized resistance, mostly untrained street gangs. This debate is only going on because the USMCs performance in Iraq and Afghanistan(and I recognize many outstanding acts of heroism and performance on many occasions) as a whole has been very poor, bordering on incompetance. You can shout "first to fight" all you want but the bean counters in DC see that the Army is usually first to fight. You see no Congressional or Senate comittees debating the complete reorganization of the Army because of performance. The bottomline is that lack of performance is why the USMC is under scrutiny. I started in the USMC and wish this was not so, but it is fact.


jhm October 22, 2010 at 5:57 pm

after the revolutionary war the marine corp was disbanded. however by 1780s teh we realized we made a huge mistake and revitalized it. Im sure congress wont make that stupid mistake again for when history repeats itself, its for hte worst and disbanding the marines would go under that category


Robert A. Fritts October 28, 2010 at 2:40 pm

From M167A1 – Infuratingly in Safwan a POW asked us if we were Marines… He was relieved when someone said no.

A Iraqi Armor Officer who surrendered after we destroyed his 14 T-72 and 28 BMPs just East of Karbala asked us if we were "US Marines"? When we said no just 3rd ID, US Army, He too was relieved. Then we had to tell him the Marines were bogged down 95 mile South of our location fighting gangs of teenagers and old men from the local Bath parties with AKs, RPGs and Isuzu trucks.


dbarber15 December 2, 2010 at 1:05 pm

Being that it is I am leaving for Parris Island around the April-May timeframe, I may be a bit biased in saying, the Marines deserve to stay as they are, I think they've earned that right. They were the ones who fought this countries enemies before it was a country, do you think the Continental Army just had mass stores of arms? The Marines raided the Bahamas to get rifles (almost said guns) cannons and cannonballs for the Army to use. In Somalia, while the Marines were stationed there, the warlords were hiding, when the Marines pulled out and the Army came in with its Rangers, 10th Mountain, the Air Force with its PJ's and the Navy with its few seals, what happened? Yes a few Marines did stay behind (read the book Shooter.) Now the Marines have a very distinguished combat rapport, and yes a lot of the major battles, Army units were present. I'm not about to slander any branch, I have friends in almost all of them, I am thankful for all the men and women of every branch of service. This country and its military gave me 18 years of life its about time I repayed that.


dbarber15 December 2, 2010 at 1:05 pm

@Robert A. Fritts
Did you mention to the Iraqi Officer that your unit's tanks outclassed his on an immeasurable level? Their tanks lack the shock system or whatever it is that keeps the barrel of the Abrams pointed at the target while going over bumps and hills. Did you also inform him that the Marines were fighting in a city, where collateral damage always looks bad. The Iraqi units may not have surrendered as easily as they did in the first Gulf War, but they did surrender, do these "Gangs of Teenagers and Old men" surrender? Not until the Marines had busted down doors, and level weapons into their faces. Those "Gangs" were being payed by Iraqi military and extremist groups, just to pop a few shots off at the americans.


MARINEMIKE December 4, 2010 at 8:54 pm

I dont think people understand the significance of the MAGTF.
Combat, Logistics, Air all under 1 commander. Its just a great idea.

All the talk about the Marine Corps needing to find something relevant to do. When a ship shows up off your coast with a battalion of grunts, that changes minds to the scale of political change.

Average Army grunt is as good as the Average Marine Grunt. Where the difference comes is all the other MOS's. How many Admin or Finance Army officers can coordinate attacks, call for fire, defend in depth, Qualify out to 500m w/ iron sights….its a rabbit hole.


daniel February 13, 2011 at 7:11 am

@ Robert Fritts

I have met your type, the “started out in the Marine Corps.” It is no suprise to me that you would verbally jab the record of the Marine Corps, since you were likely a s#it bag or a 4 year LCpl. I have fought in Iraq 3 times and Afghanistan once. If we pull out a victory in Afghanistan, thank the Marines for securing Helmand (if you know anything, Al Anbar, also the homeland of Sunni insurgency. Sounds like you soldier need a history lesson of both wars after your National Guard unit returned to Kuwait to feed incoming troops in those long chowhall lines. Thanks for your service and I am sorry you propably couldn’t make it in the Marine Corps. We are the Few, the very Proud…..Marines!


MrSinister February 27, 2011 at 1:36 pm

While the Marine Corps likes to say they are "First to Fight" in fact that has not been true for more than 50 years. In fact, the Marines say they are the best at everything they do, when their recent combat record belies their opinion.

The Marines ALWAYS claim they are underequipped and under budgeted. Yet they spend money to buy their own camouflage uniforms, fund the Osprey, and even specify their own rifle configurations. They seem to care more about being Marines then being Americans. You would think they'd learned by now that Hubris and Pride are deadly sins.

The Marine Corps is like France. They can do whatever they want, because what they do isn't very important. The Army could do it all better, and without the constant ego stroking.

An amphibious landing in the face of modern artillery and missiles would be slaughter: that's why the Marines conducted a straight-ahead ground assault in Desert Storm, with an amphibious feint.

Without any reason for amphibious assault, there really is no reason for the Marine Corps other than historical precedent. Those few Marines who could make it as Paratroopers would do so, fighting the same assault mission only more effectively. The rest could fill out the Army's straight-leg infantry units.


KEN June 8, 2011 at 5:30 pm



SGT TOM COLWELL December 7, 2011 at 11:25 pm



SGT TOM COLWELL December 6, 2011 at 8:39 pm



mac December 9, 2011 at 4:30 pm

NOT downgrading the army but ii is pretty clear that the average us marine is somewhat of a better fighter. In fact marines probably fight more with special forces than regular army units. if you look at the capalibilities of the marines they are unique among any military organization in the world. marine meu brings small unit (force recon) has combat divers, air assualt, amphip assualt, tanks, artilary, logostics, medical, etc, along with the natural aggression us marines have. instead of us marines being absorbed by the us army how about special forces being absorbed by the us marines. imagine us spec ops plus us marines and there capailities combined. and one other item of note not all future wars maybe against countries that are landlocked or do not have air forces or air defenses. if the country can hit our ships with missles don't you think they can hit c 130s loaded with paratroopers. the us may not always have the luxury of having nearby countrys that support us and allow us the use of their soil. when that happens how do you intend to put boots on the ground? we should expand us marines role not decrease it.


PVT. carpenter May 9, 2012 at 6:26 pm

By a land slide the army has a higher GT and IQ scores than the marines. Why give a force advanced equipment if they are not intelligent enough to operate them. In a study in 2007 70% of the marines incoming recruits said the joined the marines simply because the uniform w as black………. case and points the marines are idiots.


m16a4ish December 29, 2012 at 6:33 am

From a non-American point of view, it seems to me that the Marines are more highly regarded by their foreign counterparts in the ISAF than their Army counterparts. JOke going around is them bloody Army have the equipment, but they don't have the balls.


ReconChiro July 23, 2014 at 5:28 am

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times. Marines do more with less.Fighting and Fking are what Marines do best. Sgt of Marines


Devilpup September 9, 2010 at 5:12 pm

its actually rather simple, its something the Army has never trained to do. the one time in its entire history the Army made an Amphib landing, they did with USMC equipment, and Marines at the helm. beliefe it or not, Amphib warfare is a specality that you cannot train an entire army for, in addition to everything else. being a Marine is more than being Amphib, its a mentality. its a tradition. and its Earned, not given!


Elder September 13, 2010 at 2:06 am

Marines, Navy,Air Force, Coast Guard and Army we all are fighting the same enemy, we are vital to each other. We should not talk about who is best, but how we are going to destroy the envy against The United States Of America!!


Former USMC 0331 September 15, 2010 at 10:26 am

Yea the US Army could not hold Grenada a small island. Sent in US Marines to do the real job. The US Army is so big it cant get out of its own way.


A historian September 9, 2010 at 5:21 pm

You forget all the major landings the Army did in the European theater, without marine help, and in the Pacific the Army did more landings than the marines, they just did not have as many PR flacks, bragging about it.


Jacob September 9, 2010 at 5:28 pm

IIRC, weren't most of the landings in the Pacific during WWII actually conducted by the Army rather than the Marines? And also in this modern age where American technology and firepower can effortlessly overwhelm an enemy on the front lines, do we really need to resort to amphibious flanking maneuvers like we did at Inchon?


M167A1 September 9, 2010 at 6:18 pm

The Army dose what it needs to do. If they want us to land from ship ok fine.. we land from ships. If they want us to jump out of planes…. okay.. fine we can do that.

The Marines are specialists in expiditionary warfare. While the Army is a larger do all land warfare organization. Its an unsubtle difference. They compliment each other rather than duplicate function.

The is some truth that the Marines are being as if they were the Army (droctrine wise) But the Army is too small to do the job so… who do we know that has some good troops… lets see…

Moving forward I think a smaller Army focused on border security, maintaining an active duty core of perhaps Corps size along with large reserve formations is the way to go.

The Marines get to be the State Department troops.


Brittankie September 10, 2010 at 8:36 am

Yes, in a word. Just look back to the 2003 Iraq conflict, although it was the British Armed Forces with USSF and Polish SF support. Amphibious operations are always viable.

On a side note, in the European theatre a lot of the landings done at D-Day were done with the Royal Navy support. Despite what 'Saving Private Ryan' portrays ;)


blight September 9, 2010 at 6:43 pm

The Airborne begs to differ with "tip of the sword".


KO September 9, 2010 at 10:05 pm

Agree with most of it but with fbest figthing force in the world. The infantrymen in the marines are but I easily believe army spec ops are bar non the best in the world. Just sayin’


fobbit September 9, 2010 at 6:59 pm

Nicely put.


praetorian September 10, 2010 at 10:36 am

I agree, well said.


Bob September 10, 2010 at 11:33 am

Well, in WWII the Navy put a whole fleet under the command of an Army General named McArthur. It worked out pretty well. In 1950 the landing at Inchon was thought up by, and under the command of an Army General.

Don't forget the Army has a few ships and boats of its very own. A lot or Marines like to think the sun raises and sets on the USMC. The truth is that historiacally the country got along fine, won a lot of major battles and some wars, without any significant contribution from the USMC, The one thing the Marines do well is toot their own horn, have an excellent propaganda branch/PR effort. Yes, the USMC produces some good fighters, but so does the Army. They have some good pilots, but so does the AF and Navy.
We should not disband the Marine Corps, but it could be cut back to 40,000 to 45,000. That would save the Navy money, that it needs for ship building, modernization and manning. 170,000 Marines are redundant and too expensive, for what they accomplish.


STemplar September 10, 2010 at 11:46 am

I have to agree with Bob. Talk about disbanding the Corps is wasted effort, however, maintaining a force the size required and equipped to storm the #s that are talked about, ashore under fire is silly. Even in Inchon, the preparatory bombardment and sound tactics essentially allowed them to walk ashore compared with the WW2 Pacific campaigns. We fought like that then because we had to, not because we wanted to. Air mobility, ISR, and PGMs make that type of battle a thing of the past. Buying equipment to fight a way we aren't going to is wasteful and just plain dumb. Maintaining the manpower for it is equally stupid. It robs the USN of needed money for hulls and aircraft and the Corps of needed upgrades and new systems.


Riceball September 10, 2010 at 11:51 am

The thing is that while the Airborne can get there faster than the Corps the Corps can there faster with more.


STemplar September 10, 2010 at 12:08 pm

They both have a role to play in NCA's range of options.


Dana September 11, 2010 at 11:22 pm

Airborne has three days logistics. Marines, thirty days. Makes a fighting difference.


chaos0xomega September 10, 2010 at 6:57 pm

While I respect the passion with which you fight for your service, you too must check your history books. The Marines have been here before (and will be here again if they do survive). Cutting the Marines is not a new idea, its been around for a very long time, and has a LOT of very well thought out arguments.

And while there is no doubt that the Marines are an efficient fighting force, there is always some doubt as to HOW efficient they are. Budget-wise, they wouldn't be very different from the Army, Navy, or Air Force if they had to pay the R&D costs themselves. They have such low costs because most of their equipment ends up being subsidized by another branch to some degree (V-22 r&d was mostly paid for by the army and air force, F-35 R&D also largely paid for by air force, M1 Abrams R&D largely covered by Army (and I believe a good chunk of them were transferred from the Army to the Marines at no cost), etc.).


daniel September 10, 2010 at 10:25 pm

From MC offical site

062050Z FEB 07
ALMAR 008/07

From SMCR site

The Selected Marine Corps Reserve is comprised of members serving in the following categories: Selected Reserve, Active Reserve, Individual Mobilization Augmentee, and Initial Active Duty Training. The authorized end strength of the SMCR is 39,600.

The Marine Corps is roughly half the size of the Army and has less AOs in Afghanistan and Iraq. Your other assertions are completely subjective and lack any proper citations about Marines training anyone for anything.
How can we take anything you say seriously when you dont know what your talking about?


Robert A. Fritts October 22, 2010 at 4:55 pm

Yes since the USMC made up 4% of the Americn Expiditionary Force(AEF) that General Pershing commanded, it is obvious that the other 96% just kicked back and watched the USMC win the war! LMAO go back to the USMC recruiting page where you belong.
Also why do USMC pundits spell so badly?
The USMC is under scrutiny today because its performance over the last decade has been very poor. There are no Congressional or Senate comittees currently looking at a fundemental TOTAL restructuring of the Army, that is based on performance. The USMC performance in Iraq in 2003-2005 was a story of incompetance, bordering on criminal. I started in the USMC but do not wear blinders to reality. The Marines will be changed greatly in the future, I hope for the better.


Don March 18, 2011 at 10:57 pm

Army Special Forces just won the international sniper competition so no Marines are not the best snipers. I am a Army veteran of Desert Storm. I was in the tank battles of 73 Easting and Norfolk. There were no Marines in sight so you did not embarrass anybody in the 1st gulf war.


Robert A. Fritts September 10, 2010 at 11:12 pm

Brittankie, You are correct. On this and other threads I have jumped on Marine Corps cheerleaders. I'm US Army SF but have served with US Marines in Somalia, Iraq and A-stan because of my language skills. Marine forces are no better than Army. In fact in similar sized units the Army is much more capable and flexible. Al-Anbar province was the Marines only AO in Iraq, it took conversion of Sunnis to our side by US Army SF and Civil Affairs, and the pumping in of 9,000 extra Army troops during the surge to acheive the USMC's "Victory".
In the mid-90s the USMC stopped reguarly paticipating in force on force exercises the NTC at Ft. Irwin and 29 Palms, because they were getting their asses handed to them way too reguarly.


Robert A. Fritts September 10, 2010 at 11:13 pm

Let not waste time on debating who is best. Your example is great. D-day was acheived by different forces from different counties all working together. My father fought in the 41st Panzer Rgmt facing Americans on D-day, but says he and his platoon were most terrified by RAF Tempest and Typhoon ground attack fighters. Again we see that multipling all of our assets by using each services best qualities and abilities. My example was that I rode in one of the 1st Cav Bradleys that(with 1st CAV M1A2s) lead ALL Marine units into Fallujah(by Nov 2004 Marine Armor was considered Combat Ineffective due to shoddy Maintenance).
Interestingly I do feel the Marines are the best smaller fighting force in the world, The Royal Marines!


Rick W September 12, 2010 at 9:36 pm

In the Marines defense, you have to admit that pretty much everyone in the Army got their asses handed to them by OPFOR at Irwin. (Our brigade certainly did.) That was pretty much the point of the exercise.


Nic September 11, 2010 at 1:07 pm

Check yourslef on the V-22! Your way off course.


chaos0xomega September 12, 2010 at 1:29 am

I can support this, but if we do that, lets remove the Marines from the Department of the Navy.


STemplar September 12, 2010 at 6:40 pm

My issue isn't no amphibious capability, my issue is the idea that we are going to need swarms of hundreds of amphibious IFVs to fight when we hit the beach is absurd. Modern ISR, helicopters, PGMs, make that a thing of the past. Marines operating with an air-mobile concept combined with precision strike and SOF ops, are going to prepare any beach for unopposed, or lightly opposed at best landing.

Even Inchon showed a refinement of the concept of amphibious assault with the beach head being prepared by SOF ops making the landing easier.

The Corps should retain a certain level of amphibious assault capacity but not the level envisioned with 600+ EFVs. They need a AAV7 replacement, but the EFV is just plain broken and it does not work.

Dropping this notion of storming a contested coastline with thousands of marines would save them a huge amount of money. Those savings coupled with a reduction of numbers could be rolled into additional VTOL assets, hulls for the USN, reset of of existing gear, purchase of new systems, etc.

The USMC is fine right where it is structurally, none of this roll it into the Army, the Army into it, that would just be dollars spent on studies and itty bitty committees and chairborne ranger generals developing new doctrines and FMs we don't need.

The marines are forward deployed, they need to think more punch than an airborne unit, and on scene faster than a stryker BDE. That should be their bread and butter.


Luke September 12, 2010 at 7:13 pm

I'm sorry, are you a Marine? Probably not, huh? Let's get one thing straight here. If there was a force consisting of over one million men and women (ARMY), and a force that has 241,000 active and reserve combined (Marine Corps), then yes, chances are they will be able to provide more qualified soldiers to train for a Ranger competition. We as Marines, do not care about crap like that. The average infantryman in the Corps, for which I am one with over 11 years experience, has little to no time to train for these events. We are lucky if we even get a chance or give a sh– to send anyone over there. I mean come on, it was devised by Rangers and set in place for Rangers. Let me also tell you about those Marines who won the sniper competition you speak of. I know them personally since I trained all of them. They are "regular Marines" with the same skill set of a Sniper. Most of them had only been in about 4-5 years when they won this competition. They just happened to reenlist for a non-deployable billet to instruct. Now, you want to talk trash, then answer me this enlightened one.


Stu September 12, 2010 at 7:14 pm

I'll just start with basics. Why is your boot camp for non-infantry co-ed unlike ours which is segregated? Why is it only 9 weeks in comparison to our 12? Why do you non-infantry not attend any infantry school training, when every single non-infantry Marine does, including females? How come you soldiers only qualify up to 300 yards, when everyone of us qualifies at 500? Also it's not "loosing", it's "losing".


Robert A. Fritts October 22, 2010 at 4:58 pm

Yes Marines are more concerned about polishing brass for the Marine Ball or a parade.


Dylan September 12, 2010 at 9:57 pm

You need to fact check history and geographics phrogdiver. Afghanistan is a lanlocked country, and the Army was in Afghanistan before the Marines. The Army GAVE the Marines the south. Oh yeah, the Army Airborne needed to come back because the Marines couldn't handle it.


daniel September 12, 2010 at 10:37 pm

Because the Army can learn faster?


Nic September 13, 2010 at 11:45 am

I agree! Have an actual budget for the Corps for onece!


Bob September 13, 2010 at 4:01 pm

Army basic is 10 weeks by the way, and don't get me wrong here but i think the reason you have to go through Marine Boot even if you've served with another service has more to do with getting the Marine culture then any extra training that is needed by the recruit.


daniel September 13, 2010 at 7:57 pm

Tell everybody what team week is?

the Royal Marine commandos have 32 weeks of basic training, so I guess they're 3 times the marine.

I dont see what prior service requirements have to do with anything, maybe the Army uses it money wiser? Would explain why the Marines are always complaining that their command failed them on equipment purchases. furthermore if your resorting to BASIC TRAINING as your metric for effectiveness you are focusing on the EASIEST part of ones military service. Its just the first hard thing. Whats up with the shooting jacket and sling on your rifle quals?

Your a perfect example of the Marine Corps fanboy, you cant state why the Marines are good without tearing down others, sounds like you cant stand on your own merit.


daniel September 13, 2010 at 7:59 pm

Thank You and the feeling is mutual


Robert A. Fritts October 16, 2010 at 1:26 am

Actually you must have watched "Heartbreak Ridge" one too many times. I loved that film too, but as the proponents of the USMC hype are noted, almost nothing in that film is true. Recon of the Island was done by Navy Seal Team 3, the only confrontation with the Cuban Engineer Company was by 2/75th Rangers, the movement to and freeing of the medical campus was 2/325th PIR, the attack on the prison/jail was by a combined Delta/7th SFG/Seal Team 6 platoon, and the only armor vehicle destroyed by a helicopter was by 1/229 Aviation Bn US Army. Even the famous "collect call" was made by a SEAL Team 3 member. Other than that the movie was 100% realistic, especially embarking from Camp Pendelton and returning home to the same girlfriends at MCAS Cherrypoint. The Official Marine history of Grenada indicates that 17 Marines actually fired weapons resulting in wounds to 5 US Marines.


Robert A. Fritts October 16, 2010 at 1:34 am

I just want to get some facts out there. The Real point is that the combined assets of the USAF, USN, USMC and the US Army plus thousands of DOD civilians and contractors make us a force second to none. We have a long enough service history that we all can point out SNAFUs by every branch and every decent sized unit of every branch. But please read a little history, lessons learned sheets, professional journals, and After Action Reviews before posting. I'm a proud US Army Soldier, who started in 1/3 Marines in Camp Schwab, Oki. I'm damn happy we have Soldiers, Sailors, Maires, Airmen and Coasties.


Robert A. Fritts October 22, 2010 at 3:46 pm

Yes but on too many occasions the Armor and Mech infantry Brigades and Bns thumped their USMC bretheran at 29 Palms with Marine OCs. This was just too much for the USMC, so they cancelled them all. Fact not fiction.


rosoe p coletrain May 21, 2012 at 1:54 pm

name an instance when the marines invaded an area and then handed it over to the army.


Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: