It makes varying degrees of sense depending on how much one buys into the active-duty Marine Corps intelligentsia's frame of mind, which is grounded mainly in ideas like those expressed by "The Kill Chain" and "Ghost Fleet." If those theses are fundamentally accurate, units like the Marine Littoral Regiment are much more useful to the joint force by providing a survivable "sensing" capability than an outright "lethality" measured in the ability to weight the main effort, integrate with armor, and cover maneuver with fires: a Marine platoon in the defense is incredibly difficult to kill -- but a Marine platoon that can also remain concealed for long periods of time (hence the push for foraging and the like) while collecting on enemy forces? Game changer.
I appreciate your views as someone involved in the process but not sure I'm buying into all of it. I think some of the criticism is justified while some, admittedly, may just be Old School resistance to change.
During the Vietnam war, the Corps was flexible enough to utilize three different tactical concepts: traditional rifle-platoon infantry operations and Combined Action units involved in FID and counter-insurgency operations comprising squad-size teams living in the bush 24-7 (the latter of which was my experience); as well as MEUs operating in other parts of the world. Over the years the Corps has expanded and contracted through force reductions and expansions to meet the demands of a particular conflict.
I admit I like the idea of the MLR, which I view as an evolution of the MEU/BLT. But why not retain at least one or two brigades of shock-force trained infantry which can also rotate through the MLRs and vice-versa?
Your sentence that I bolded just says Recon Platoon to me.
I confess I haven't read the books you name but am very familiar with James Webb and his views.