- Foreign Policy - This Week at War: Rules of the Game
- New York Times - At War Blog: Robert Bales and the Case for a Measured Approach to Alcohol in Combat
- Vice - Paintballing with Hezbollah
- DoD Buzz - Navy: The cruisers must go, the others may stay.
- Danger Room - After Massacre, Army Tried to Delete Accused Shooter from the Internet
- Battle Rattle - Katy Perry joins the Marine Corps?
- Marine Corps Times - Marine says Corps kicking him out for criticism
- World Politics Review - NATO's Relevance a Question of Perspective
- Battleland - General Allen Takes the Hill
- Information Dissemination - Filling in the Gaps
- Battle Rattle - 2/5 Marines replace 2/4 in Afghanistan
- Zenpundit - Perception and Strategy Part I
- Ink Spots - Robert Bales is Not the Victim
- Marine Corps Times - Corps' new Australia tours to start in April
- The Duck of Minerva - It's Time to De-Russianize the BRICS
Sunday, March 25, 2012
Thursday, March 22, 2012
|"I was hard on you when you was growin' up. I did things |
that made you hate me. Now you can see why."
In any case, we have an obligation to maintain our units at the highest readiness and to develop the skills and character of our young Marines and Sailors. Like it or not, our services have adopted a culture and a reality of providing some degree of in loco parentis supervision to our juniors. With that comes some "intrusive leadership." The commentators above, however, cite the blow to the concept of "special trust and confidence" and to the likely effects on morale as servicemembers are increasingly treated as suspects. This is all true, in my book. But it is not so simple as it seems at first glance. This is not a blow to trust and morale solely because it is an imposition. It is seen that way because it is just one more policy doomed to fail because it is based on institutional moral cowardice, risk averse thinking, and is part of a policy portfolio that is reflective of a lack of priorities. I'll delve into each of these, but the best summation came from an infantry officer friend of mine: "I get weighed once a month so I don't get fat. I pee in a bottle once a month so I don't take drugs. Now I'm going to to have to take a breathalyzer on a regular basis so I don't come to work drunk. Yet, no one is checking to make sure that I'm competent at my job and am not going to get anyone killed." There is a lot to discuss in this statement, but don't start sniping it yet. We are going to take a somewhat circuitous route to get back to the breathalyzer issue, but it all ties together.
Sunday, March 18, 2012
This will be the first of a (hopefully) weekly roundup of interesting and important links from around the web.
- The Diplomat - The Strategic Corporal's Evil Twin
- The Diplomat - Taliban Suspends Talks
- The Washington Post - Widow of Marine who committed suicide to receive life insurance claim
- Zenpundit - Supporting Our Troops by Treating them like Children and Drunkards
- Slouching Towards Columbia - Taming intervention is harder than it seems
(GWU student Dan Trombly discusses limited interventions like the Banana Wars and compares them to the possibility of an intervention in Syria.)
- Foreign Policy - This Week at War: Losing Faith
- Gunpowder and Lead - All About the (Private) Benjamins
- Gunpowder and Lead - Build a House and Burn it Down
(Marine Captain Jonathan Rue discusses issues surrounding combat advisors.)
- Danger Room - Gunboats, Super-Torpedoes, Sea-Bots: U.S. Navy launches huge Iran surge
- Marine Corps Times - Corps, Army to restart "forcible entry" drills
- Small Wars Journal - Romancing the COIN
- Global Politics - Iraq Update: An interview with Author Peter J. Munson
(Global Politics magazine interviews our own Peter Munson.)
- The Political Notebook - Afghanistan in 2012 (so far): A Summary
(Last but not least, journalist Torie Rose DeGhett sums up Afghanistan so far this year.)
Thursday, March 15, 2012
The Marine Corps’ new recruiting campaign, framing the Marine Corps as the Nation’s “911 force,” is just getting going. I’ve seen mixed reactions from Marines, with some pointing to it as a sign that the Marine Corps is going soft. In reality though, nothing new is depicted in the recruiting campaign. Marines have always stood ready to do whatever the Nation requires of us and to do it better than anyone else. Destroying the enemy in battle is, as General Mattis tells us, all in good fun. But that is only one part of the service we provide.
The idea that the Marine Corps is the “Nation’s 911 force” derives from the fact that the Marine Corps has a unique Title 10 responsibility. Section 5063 of Title 10 US Code outlines the responsibilities of the Marine Corps. The law states that the Marine Corps “shall perform such other duties as the President may direct.” Our purview, by law, is not solely to fight the nation’s enemies but is to be prepared for any contingency. As much as we Marines revel in our warfighting ability, we must remember that it is not our sole purpose.
|A Marine in Vietnam carries children out of danger.|
Thursday, March 8, 2012
After collecting these scores unit leaders can design physical training programs to improve these deficiencies. During the physical training program Marines should run a PFT and CFT.
The unit leader can compare the before and after scores to see how his Marines are improving. The idea is to constantly be getting stronger and improving physical fitness.