Author Topic: The Commandant of the Marine Corps is charging into the future, but some aren't ready for change  (Read 124 times)

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Offline rangerrebew

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The Commandant of the Marine Corps is charging into the future, but some aren't ready for change

    Carl Forsling
    Nov 25, 2020 8:00 AM EST


Editor's Note: This is an opinion column. The thoughts expressed are those of the author.

One thing that’s constant through most military organizations is reverence for tradition. The flip side of that, though, is a fear of change. It’s through that lens that many observers are viewing Commandant of the Marine Corps Gen. David Berger’s Force Design 2030. Some of that criticism comes from distinguished experts, like former Senator and Secretary of the Navy James Webb. But whether it be experts or the internet comments section, all of it comes with a dose of risk aversion and a sense that Berger is somehow ruining the Corps.

There are certainly big changes afoot. Much of the criticism surrounds the cuts Berger has outlined for the force. Most famously, there is the total elimination of Marine tanks. But there were far bigger victims to the ax — three infantry battalions, three tiltrotor squadrons, three heavy helicopter squadrons, two light attack helicopter squadrons, three military police battalions, and cutting tube artillery in favor of rockets, among others. Altogether, Berger’s proposed cuts amount to approximately 12,000 fewer Marines by 2030.

These cuts are both to help pay for modernization and to better align the force to the fights Marine Corps leadership believes are most likely. It’s the part of the plan that cuts structure to pay for modernization that’s actually the risky part. There’s a real chance that much of the savings from cuts will not accrue to the Corps, but end up being spread to the rest of the Department of the Navy, or even to the rest of the Department of Defense. In the early 2000s, the Air Force cut its end strength to save money for modernization but ended up with a smaller Air Force lacking in modernization.
C.S. Lewis: “I dread government in the name of science. That is how tyrannies come in.”

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