OUR MILITARY MUST END ONEUPSMANSHIP!

0699

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I think we agree more than we disagree...

The Marines key strength is their combined arms team. I've always admired that. In many ways, less fixed wing aircraft, the Army has turned to that model with the Brigade Combat Teams. 82d/101st guys: I know the DRB's have been doing this since the formation of the Rapid Deployment Task Forces in the 70's, but let's give credit to a good idea!

Agreed; what makes the Corps unique is the MAGTF. I'm not sure why the Army doesn't organize the same way...

But just because it needs to be said:

The Army is as expeditionary as the Marines. The difference is who provides the ride.

Also probably true, especially now that they have their own MPF ships. The question to me though is why. Just as many people argue against MARSOC because we already have that expertise resident in USASOC, why do we need two forces to perform entry-style operations?

And I seem to recall that the Army has executed as many amphibious ops as the Marine Corps (or more).

AFAIK, this happened in the PTO in WW II and was why the forerunners of ANGLICO (the JASCOs) were stood up.

Regarding small wars, yes the Marine Corps did a lot of that at the turn of the 20th Century. Then, when it stopped being cool, they dropped it like a bad habit. Yes they wrote a great book about it. But when it was time to form SOCOM, the Marines were uninterested...until it was in their financial interest to be interested.

As I understand it, it wasn't a lack of interest per-say, but a concern that dedicating Marines to SOCOM would pull slots away from our core missions.

Ok...

I think the Marines are a good FID force. If they ever decide what to call it, it will be a great complement to the USA SF FID effort. (I understand that MARSOC is doing away with this as a discreet force - this would be unfortunate, if true).

There's no doubt they are a great DA/SR force. I think that those Marine SO companies will fill critical gaps, again complementing the existing SOF force structure.

The question is: Does the Marine Corps want to spend MFP-11 money to improve the Corps, or does the Corps want to increase the MFP-11 investment in SOCOM?

Another :2c:

That's an excellent question and one I've brought up myself. One of the ways MARSOC was sold inside the Corps is that we would have Marines spend 4-5 years at MARSOC, then return to the fleet with new knowledge and experience. We all know that for MARSOC to operate at the level of professionalism that AFSOC or ASOC do, that's going to cause a problem. For Marines to operate at that level is goingto require them spending the vast majority of their TIS in the SOCOM arena.

Now we're starting to see the other effect of sending our 0321s (the MOS for Reconnisance Marine) to MARSOC; we no longer have the deep-reconnisance capability resident in the MEF and are re-establishing Force Recon to perform those missions.
 
S

Simmerin' SigO

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I think we agree more than we disagree...

Agreed; what makes the Corps unique is the MAGTF. I'm not sure why the Army doesn't organize the same way...

The Army isn't allowed the Aviation assets, which is a big LIMFAC. Also, the MAGTF doctrine is written as an partner with the Navy's Force Projection doctrine. MAGTF requirements are often supported by the Navy, lending a extra degree of emphasis in budgeting. The Army has to be a lot more eclectic in its organizational models, since they have some many more/varied requirements.

Also probably true, especially now that they have their own MPF ships. The question to me though is why. Just as many people argue against MARSOC because we already have that expertise resident in USASOC, why do we need two forces to perform entry-style operations?

This one is an easier case to make for a MARSOC under the "more is better/everybody gets covered" model. The recently aborted (thank God) JSOG concept would have worked out great for MARSOC as way to show how they could fill in the real gaps.

AFAIK, this happened in the PTO in WW II and was why the forerunners of ANGLICO (the JASCOs) were stood up.

I might remind you of GEN Ned Almond's X Corps Inchon landing in the Korean War. :)

As I understand it, it wasn't a lack of interest per-say, but a concern that dedicating Marines to SOCOM would pull slots away from our core missions.

This begs the question: Which core missions from then are no longer important now?

That's an excellent question and one I've brought up myself. One of the ways MARSOC was sold inside the Corps is that we would have Marines spend 4-5 years at MARSOC, then return to the fleet with new knowledge and experience. We all know that for MARSOC to operate at the level of professionalism that AFSOC or ASOC do, that's going to cause a problem. For Marines to operate at that level is goingto require them spending the vast majority of their TIS in the SOCOM arena.

I think this is the chief complaint against MARSOC by Army SOF primarily. MFP-11 is not designed to be used to "build the bench" for conventional forces. That's what their budget lines are for. There's nothing wrong with the Services benefitting from TTP or equipment validated by SOF ops. It's quite another when a Service lends combat forces to SOF/SOCOM with the expressed (or at least stage-whispered) intent of using the expertise to build their Service on someone else's dime.

Now we're starting to see the other effect of sending our 0321s (the MOS for Reconnisance Marine) to MARSOC; we no longer have the deep-reconnisance capability resident in the MEF and are re-establishing Force Recon to perform those missions.

Concur. Anyone who understands the role of Force Recon recognizes that sooner or later the Marines will have to reconstitute their recon forces. This was the reason I was given (by a Marine who mentored me on the topic) why the Marines couldn't afford to join SOCOM when it originally stood up without a major force-size plus up. Interestingly, as the Marines are paring off their Recon to SOCOM, the Army is trading infantry battalions for "RSTA Squadrons".

An aside: Hat tip to both you and Hitman. When thorny topics like Marines vs Army come up, you both always show class and intellectual honesty in debate. I appreciate that.
 

Trip_Wire

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0699:

Speaking of 'Small Wars' and Guerilla warfare, don't forget the Army was busy in that time period as well in the PI and other places :rolleyes:;).
 

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Marauder06

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...

An aside: Hat tip to both you and Hitman. When thorny topics like Marines vs Army come up, you both always show class and intellectual honesty in debate. I appreciate that.

Concur. Few people can effectively argue emotional topics like the ones discussed in this thread.
 

Marauder06

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I went back and re-read the original post that started this thread. Frankly, I had trouble following everything in the article, there were some good points in there but I thought it was a bit rambling. Personally, I'd like to sit down with the guy who wrote it and talk face-to-face, a lot of them are of personal interest to me. I agree with some of the things but am not clear on some others.

For example, I'm not sure how MARSOC being assigned a UW mission to complement that of SF is "oneupsmanship." I think it's a natural evolution of SOF. Clearly, there are not not enough SOF forces, let alone SF forces, to do UW or other core SOF functions such as FID at the moment. And I don't think it's "oneupsmanship" to want to be the best in an assigned task. The higher echelons at SOCOM identified a need, and tasked appropriate assets to meet that need; I don't consider that "oneupsmanship," I consider that "adaptation," which I consider a key characteristic of SOF.
 

0699

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The Army isn't allowed the Aviation assets, which is a big LIMFAC. Also, the MAGTF doctrine is written as an partner with the Navy's Force Projection doctrine. MAGTF requirements are often supported by the Navy, lending a extra degree of emphasis in budgeting. The Army has to be a lot more eclectic in its organizational models, since they have some many more/varied requirements.

Good answer; I wasn't aware that the Army Aviation units weren't organic. I thought they could embed with a brigade or division the same way we do. I assumed you could partner up a aviation squadron and a CSS element and be pretty close to the way we establish MAGTFs.

This one is an easier case to make for a MARSOC under the "more is better/everybody gets covered" model. The recently aborted (thank God) JSOG concept would have worked out great for MARSOC as way to show how they could fill in the real gaps.

It seems as if there are tons of gaps to be covered, it's just a matter of who covers them.

I might remind you of GEN Ned Almond's X Corps Inchon landing in the Korean War. :)

Another good example. Since I've been with ANGLICO, my eyes have really been opened as to the ability of the different services to perform similar missions, both historically and today.

This begs the question: Which core missions from then are no longer important now?

I don't think any of the Corps' (especially the MEUSOC) core missions have become less important, they've just been pushed to the side because of the current GWOT. When this calms down (hopefully before my son is old enough to go to war), I think we'll see more of a return to the littorals and less focus on the missions we are currently conducting. I think large portions of the Corps are still resistant to MARSOC and would like nothing more than to see it fail (or not succeed; it ends up the same) so we could return to focusing on MEUSOC operations.

I think this is the chief complaint against MARSOC by Army SOF primarily. MFP-11 is not designed to be used to "build the bench" for conventional forces. That's what their budget lines are for. There's nothing wrong with the Services benefitting from TTP or equipment validated by SOF ops. It's quite another when a Service lends combat forces to SOF/SOCOM with the expressed (or at least stage-whispered) intent of using the expertise to build their Service on someone else's dime.

We're in total agreement on this. When the Corps first started talking about standing up MARSOC and using it to benefit the rest of the FMF, I was one of the first people I know of (yes, it's a very small group since I'm basically an a'hole:D) to throw the BS flag. For us to reach the level of skill that other service's SOFs have in their respective fields, we need to build a core group and a base of knowledge to build on, not treat it as a three-year tour, then off to DI duty.

Concur. Anyone who understands the role of Force Recon recognizes that sooner or later the Marines will have to reconstitute their recon forces. This was the reason I was given (by a Marine who mentored me on the topic) why the Marines couldn't afford to join SOCOM when it originally stood up without a major force-size plus up. Interestingly, as the Marines are paring off their Recon to SOCOM, the Army is trading infantry battalions for "RSTA Squadrons".

An aside: Hat tip to both you and Hitman. When thorny topics like Marines vs Army come up, you both always show class and intellectual honesty in debate. I appreciate that.

Thanks, and the same to you. As I see it, we're all on the same team, just a matter of what position we're playing. As long as you smile when you call me "jarhead", it's all good. :)
 

Trip_Wire

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Marauder06:

I'd like to sit down with the guy who wrote it and talk face-to-face, a lot of them are of personal interest to me. I agree with some of the things but am not clear on some others.

I posted the writers website on the post with his article, perhaps you can find an e-mail address on it and ask him some questions. I have his e-mail address if you don't find it on his site. :D

I posted the
 

Hitman2/3

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I found the article to have an interesting view on things; however I would have to disagree with a fair amount of what he had in mind. Specifically, big surprise, the portion on the Marine Corps being absorbed into the Army, but also the idea of saying Army you can only operate on land, Navy only water, Air force you got the skies. I understand where he was trying to go with this, but he either isn't aware of why the other services have been so successful or just decided to overlook it in the interest of this plan.

For one thing you can't start sectioning off each Department to only have assets that pertain to their "Job". This in itself is just not good tactics. The author proposes that all the branches turn their respective air power over to the Air Force, who will then train, and detach said units back to their respective branch.

First problem here, of many, is that for the most part the Air force knows dick about operating from a carrier and close air support. Now I'm not talking about what the Air Force calls close air support, I'm talking about what Marine aviation call close air support. Not dropping shit at 2km out, but more like 800m or closer depending on the munitions and severity of the situation. As far as carrier ops I think if you tell an AF pilot to go land on a postage stamp in the middle of the ocean at night in inclement weather he might just tell you to fuck off. Navy pilots are use to operating far away from friendly airfields and pushing until they are lower on fuel then an AF pilot would even consider.

Not knocking the AF on either account because God knows they bring some pain, but when you train someone as an AF pilot then tell them to go and work off of a Carrier or get down a couple of hundred feet off the deck and lay some hate there is definitely going to be a problem and combat effectiveness of the respective force is going to take a nose dive.

Why bother taking a tried and true capability away from on branch and give it to another just so that the same capability can now be turned over to the same branch that had it in the first place only in worse condition. It’s a waste of time money and resources.

This same argument could be made for putting SEALs in the Army as was implied by the author. Saying that a SEAL has no business operating in the mountains is like saying a frog has no business on land. You can't limit a SOF to a specific geographical location, they can specialize in one but you can't say "Even though there is no telling where the next conflict will be and we might need you guys to do it you aren't going to train in mountainous environments because you should be sticking to the water". I think we all know it doesn’t work that way.

Next, while I agree that the Marine Corps and Army have much more in common than the Marine Corps and Navy I don't see how folding us into the Army will improve our combat effectiveness or help the over all situation. If anything it almost looks as though this individual is trying to eliminate what he sees as the competition. Fold the Marine Corps into the Army then the Army Generals (who are obviously loyal to the Army and possibly to a specific unit) get to decide who a mission goes to, regardless of if this new Marine Corps is best suited for the mission chances are it will go to a less capable Army unit.

The Marine Corps effectiveness as a Combat element lies in the understanding of how it works by those individuals on high who have more or less inherited the wisdom of those who went before them. If you turnover the reigns to someone who has inherited the knowledge of how the Army works, there are going to be problems, potentially big problems. One I can foresee right off the bat is boot camp. "Why can't these Marines (who are now technically soldiers) go to Army boot camp, what do we need two different boot camps for?"

I'm not going to get into the specifics but those individuals who have studied Marine Corps culture already know what I'm saying. A joke I once heard from my Black Hat at jump was "You tell a soldier to charge a machine gun nest he'll tell you fuck no. You tell a Marine rifle man the same thing and he goes without question" While it’s a joke maybe a little extreme, and doesn’t apply to every Soldier or Marine it’s not too far off as some of you may be able to attest. That discipline and instant willingness and obedience to orders starts at boot camp. The leaders of the Corps know that more likely than not those boots, just like the Soldiers of a Ranger Bn, will someday find themselves in a really shity place with little to no back up and just the Marines to their left and right. There is no time for a PFC/LCpl to question an order, as I frequently observed Army Pvts at Jump doing on a regular basis (needless to say there was much hazing, I mean training going on while myself and my fellow Marines squashed all inserections). I don't know how you guys deal with it I would be choking a boot everyday. Anyway, you take away the institution that makes Marines and the foundation that makes the Corps the Corps is soon to follow.

Finally the Marine Corps, despite the current situation is an Expeditionary unit. While the Army is capable of Expeditionary warfare I think the Marine Corps has proven itself to be the go to branch for such missions. I mean hell at any given time there are three Marine Expeditionary Units out and about ready to deliver a re-enforced battalion of Grunts anywhere in the world with in hours, backed up by enough armor air and logistics to sustain a hard fight for a fairly long time. The author seemed to want to use the Marine Corps in the role of the Ranger Regiment and the Rangers more or less as strictly security for SF and SFOD-D, which would be a gross misuse of boths talents and capabilities.

I do agree that there needs to stop being dick measuring contest both between branches and units within the branches. However, making a cookie cutter military is not the way to go, and if anything make the Corps its own branch, it damn near already is. The Navy's even stealing our uniforms:) . The more time we spend fighting each other the less time we have to fight and kill the enemy.

P.S. Sigo thanks for the complement, you too always bring some good convo to the table.
 

Hitman2/3

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Damn, didn't realize I wrote so much. On the whole MARSOC issue I think they would be better suited, at least initialy, for DA and SR since that is an area that they already excel at. However I don't see a problem with them taking a bite out of the UW FID cake as long as they get the proper training. There is no shortage of missions out there I think we can all share :)
 

AWP

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Let's say everyone were to agree to this plan, when would we do it? Now? Next year? 10 years from now?

The thing is how would we drastically reorganize our forces in the middle of a war? It isn't as simple as telling the Marines "You belong to the Army now." or the Navy that all of her air wings now report to the Air Force's ACC. You would have redundant organizations for contracting, logistics, and training. When do you stand down those entities? How do you ensure that we don't lose any combat capability while the re-organization is occurring?

The devil is in the details.
 
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