Snake Eaters for Life?



Snake Eaters for Life?

MarSoc Update
Yesterday Defense Tech reported a little-noticed line in Vice Adm. Eric Olson’s written testimony. regarding the career path for Marines in special operations forces.
DT readers will remember that one of the main selling points – particularly for opponents of the new MarSoc force within the Corps – with the service’s entry into the spec ops world was that once Marines finish with a stint in the snake eater world, they’d return to the “regular” Corps with new knowledge, tactics and specialized skills that could help make mainstream grunts better.
But Olson’s answer to lawmakers that he wants a “spec ops for life” career path for Marines – like the other services – flies in the face of that logic.
MarSoc officials have backed away from that earlier argument, saying instead that, although Marines assigned to MarSoc may serve in the command for longer than the usual three-year assignment because of the training investment, the service wants to make sure Marines who do a stint there are competitive for promotion; meaning they still need to do “Marine” things to advance in the Marines.

Here’s a statement from MarSoc spokesman, Maj. Cliff Gilmore:
MARSOC is working with Marine Corps Manpower to determine the best model for personnel assignment and career paths within MARSOC and the SOF community. Our intent is to balance three factors: First, we must ensure we build and maintain our SOF capabilities; Second, we must ensure a good return on time and money invested to train SOF personnel; Third, we must ensure our Marines remain competitive for promotion within the Corps.​
Because it was given such short shrift in Olson’s testimony, maybe the issue won’t come to any kind of conflict. But there is a lingering doubt within the “legacy” SOF that the Corps special operators are “immature” and inexperienced. One thing the old SOF has been proud of is the maturity and experience of its personnel, the kind of expertise that comes only from spending an entire career in the community.
Will the Corps be willing to give up its best leathernecks forever? I’ll bet that will be a tough sell.
If anyone really thinks that a lot of MARSOC Marines are going to return to the FMF after a MARSOC tour, then I have a bridge in Brooklyn to sell them.
Back home they make SAS guys go back to their parent units at some stage for the same reasoning, bringing up the standard of the Army as a whole.

I don't think its a good idea, once you've earned the beret/badge whatever you should stay in the HSLD unit. :2c:
I cant imaging having to go back to the MIGHTY 82ND after being on an ODA.
I had a SASR recruit instructor who was on a rest posting after a decade in the Regiment, it gave him time to go off and do some promotion courses in between putting recruit platoon through. He enjoyed the rest.

Then when I got to the Battalion one of our Company Commanders was the longest serving member of SASR, he'd gone straight from the School of Infantry as a brand new Private to SASR selection, then on to Viet Nam as a trooper on his first tour, Patrol Commander second tour, to eventually be the RSM of the Regiment, became an Officer and spent his green Army time with us, before going on to be the XO of SASR. He assimilated pretty well with us, although he did spend a lot of time away from our Battalion on SASR business, which was a bit of a standing joke in the Battalion.