Archive for the 'Marine Corps' Category



First Woman Completes Marines’ Urban Leader Course

BY Herschel Smith
6 months ago

Military.com:

One of the Marine Corps’ female infantry riflemen hit another milestone when she became the first woman to graduate from the service’s Urban Leaders Course.

Lance Cpl. Autumn Taniguchi, with 2nd Battalion, 4th Marines, finished the three-week course that prepares leathernecks to lead troops in urban environments on May 3.

“This course is not easy,” Taniguchi said, according to a Marine Corps news release. “I didn’t expect it to be easy, but it also helps to show me that I can do more than I thought I could.”

The Urban Leaders Course, which is led by 1st Marine Division Schools at Camp Pendleton, California, covers room clearing, close-quarters battle and combat marksmanship. Students are taught to make challenging leadership decisions in an urban setting through realistic training scenarios and live-fire ranges.

None of the course standards has changed since women began serving in infantry roles, the release states, adding, “Every Marine who undergoes the training is expected to execute the mission regardless of gender.”

Seeing Taniguchi complete the course gives women in the Marine Corps another thing they can say they are able to accomplish, said Staff Sgt. Ken Rick, Urban Leaders Course chief instructor.

“Not necessarily begging for acceptance but proving to the males that they can do this,” Rick said in the release.

Well, that’s certainly reason for another celebratory glass of wine tonight, huh?  After all, that’s what the Marine Corps is all about – making it where people can say they are able to accomplish certain things.

Speaking of which, I have a quick question for Ms. Taniguchi.  Can you pick up a 220 lb Marine who has been shot and carry him over your shoulder for hundreds of yards to safety and medical assistance?  Without fracturing your pelvis?

If you can’t, do your Marines really trust you in combat?

U.S. Marine Corps: Ready For War?

BY Herschel Smith
6 months ago

The Washington Post:

In a handwritten statement, the recruit recalled that she tried to tell other recruits to slow down while they were moving in formation, upsetting the senior drill instructor. The recruit could not recall whether the Marine pushed her arm or the weapon itself.

“I knew I was in the wrong for overstepping when I shouldn’t have, but I wasn’t used to anyone messing with the weapon,” the recruit wrote.

The senior drill instructor later found the recruit on a bathroom bench at night writing to a former Reserve Officer Training Corps instructor, a sergeant major, about the incident.

She was Pvt. Raheel Siddiqui.  What do you think, readers?  Is this the kind of Marine Corps necessary for defending America?  Are they ready for war with anyone?

The disembowelment of America proceeds apace.

Marines At The Chosin Reservoir

BY Herschel Smith
7 months ago

Shooting Illustrated:

On top of the freezing temperatures, the Marines faced tens of thousands of mostly Chinese soldiers around the Chosin Reservoir. This battle took place in November and December of 1950, and there were many reservoir veterans still on active duty when I became a Marine in 1957. Most of them agreed that the main effect of the sub-zero weather was to grind you down physically. Every physical act was much more difficult to perform, and the difficulty was magnified by a lack of sleep and cold food. This was the nature of what I call the Cold Fight—at the Chosin Reservoir—where it was the deadliest kind of infantry fighting under the worst kind of circumstances. In my view, the men who did these things were giants.

Not long after I entered the Marine Corps, I was at Quantico’s Basic School with several hundred other second lieutenants. I had transgressed in some way, and the Marine Corps thought it necessary for me to go explain my deficient behavior to the Executive Officer of the school. This was not the most-comfortable position for a newbie to be in, but I had no say in the matter. I’ll never forget the cold, unblinking eyes of LtCol Reginald Myers. He got it over quickly, making sure I understood that all rules and regulations were to be obeyed. Throughout the session, I was mesmerized by the top ribbon on his uniform blouse—light blue with a sprinkling of white stars. I had never seen one. As a major, he had been the XO of a battalion in the 1st Regiment at the reservoir. Given a scraped-together force of truck drivers, cooks and personnel from other services, he led them on an attack that kept the main road open for the division to pass. This involved setting an example for his troops and that meant getting out in front. Situations like this (leading unfamiliar troops under deadly conditions) are challenging.

Myers was not the only recipient of the Medal of Honor out of the Cold Fight. Over in the 7th Marines, F-company was commanded by William Barber, and he had his company controlling Toktong pass. This narrow place was essential for the 5th and 7th regiments to get out of the valley of Yudam-Ni. He fought, wounded, for several days and kept the pass open. It also happens that a private in one of his platoons put up a fight that defies easy description. Hector Cafferata fought all night with his M1 and hand grenades, several times stopping to bat Chinese grenades back with an entrenching tool. His feat of arms was all the more impressive in that he was caught with his boots off when it started. He was never able to get enough of a break to go find his boots and get them on. Capt Barber and Pfc Cafferata both received the Medal of Honor. Barber later said Cafferata may have killed as many as 100 Chinese soldiers. That puts him in the same class as one Daniel Daly atop the Tartar Wall in the Boxer Rebellion. Everywhere you look in the several histories of the battle, you run into more examples of incredible bravery.

I believe this campaign was the most-severe test ever of Marines and their fightin’ iron.

Today, women would be in the infantry Battalions, perhaps leading them, and there may be transgenders and gays along with them.

Do you think we could win a war like that today?

Commandant Of The Marine Corps Says Deploying Troops To The Border Poses Unacceptable Risk

BY Herschel Smith
8 months ago

Stupid human tricks:

The commandant of the Marines has warned the Pentagon that deployments to the southwest border and funding transfers under the president’s emergency declaration, among other unexpected demands, have posed “unacceptable risk to Marine Corps combat readiness and solvency.”

In two internal memos, Marine Corps Gen. Robert Neller said the “unplanned/unbudgeted” deployment along the border that President Trump ordered last fall, and shifts of other funds to support border security, had forced him to cancel or reduce planned military training in at least five countries, and delay urgent repairs at bases.

The border deployment and funding transfers, as well as recovery costs from hurricanes Florence and Michael, new housing allowances and civilian pay raises, are taking a toll on combat readiness, Neller wrote to Navy Secretary Richard Spencer and Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan.

The Times obtained copies of the memos, dated March 18 and March 19.

Here’s another view from a former Marine who did a MEU after a combat tour in Iraq.  A MEU is the most ridiculous waste of time and money on earth, with the need for massive refueling, resupply, mail drop, force protection, and repair, all while at sea.  This, for the sole purpose of floating around the Gulf and “training” with incompetent troops who can’t even come close to holding their own with the USMC.

This is what the Commandant calls combat “readiness.”  All the while, an invasion is occurring on our Southern border, and even the troops deployed there can’t lift a finger to stop it since they are not on patrol or under arming orders.

Hey.  At least the corporations get low paid workers whose medical care can be sloughed off on the taxpayers, and the democrats get voters.  So the elitists are happy.

Lowered Standards In The Green Berets

BY Herschel Smith
10 months ago

Breitbart:

Two Army Green Berets are fighting for their military careers after being associated with an anonymous email that accused their commanders of lowering standards to enable more soldiers — particularly female — to graduate from its prestigious Q-course.

The anonymous email, signed, “A concerned Green Beret,” accused the leaders of the school of “moral cowardice” for lowering the standards, and weakening instructors’ ability to discipline students as they look to get further through the pipeline.

“[The school] has devolved into a cesspool of toxic, exploitive, biased and self-serving senior officers who are bolstered by submissive, sycophantic, and just-as-culpable enlisted leaders,” the email said. “They have doggedly succeeded in two things; furthering their careers, and ensuring that Special Forces [are] more prolific but dangerously less capable than ever before.”

One of the specific complaints was that the Special Forces Qualification Course (SFQC), commonly referred to as “Q-course,” was restructured so that there were “no physical barriers to earning the coveted Green Beret.”

[ … ]

The Marine Corps, which was the most resistant, has made recent headlines for integrating a female platoon into a previously all-male battalion at Parris Island, S.C., and for its first female Marine officer graduating from the Scout Sniper Unit Leaders Course.

As I’ve said before, the communist project is nearly complete.  And the country’s leadership was and continues to be a willing and culpable partner.

Hundreds More Active-Duty Troops May Be Sent To U.S.-Mexico Border

BY Herschel Smith
10 months, 1 week ago

Military Times:

U.S. officials say the Pentagon is finalizing plans that would send hundreds of additional active-duty troops to the U.S.-Mexico border for several more months to support the Department of Homeland Security.

The troops would install another 160 miles of concertina wire in Arizona and California.

Details are being worked out, but the plan likely would extend the military’s border mission though the end of September.

The mission is separate from President Donald Trump’s campaign to build a border wall but is designed to bolster security.

Officials said Friday the installation of the wire barrier is not expected to take long, so troops doing that would be finished long before September.

There currently are 2,350 active-duty troops assigned to the border mission, which was slated to end Jan. 31.

None of this makes a hill of beans of difference.  They won’t be under arming orders.  They will have no mission except to perform administrative and assistance duties.

I believe that virtually the only constitutional imperative of the U.S. military is to protect and defend the country against invasion and protect the borders (with the exception of the Navy and Marines who protect and defend Americans abroad and trade on the high seas).  Therefore, I support an armed mission in which invaders are shot.

However, the lawyers, the Congress, the Senate, the military, the judiciary, and just about everyone in power, interprets Posse Comitatus as preventing the use of the military this way, even though their actions wouldn’t be taken against U.S. citizens.

So they will arm the FBI, BLM, ATF and most other federal agencies like an army and allow them to perpetrate armed actions against U.S. citizens, while preventing the military from stopping invasion.

Light is called darkness, and darkness is called light.  But until the country has the stomach to force this action, it won’t happen.  The military lawyers won’t even bother to bind the hands of Soldiers and Marines at the border by issuing ROE/RUF.  They just won’t arm them at all.

A Marine And His Pistol

BY Herschel Smith
1 year, 6 months ago

Marine Corps Times:

A young Marine lieutenant killed 51 years ago while holding off an enemy ambush was awarded a long overdue Silver Star for battlefield heroics at a ceremony held Tuesday.

First Lt. Philip H. Sauer, a native of Coronado, California, was posthumously awarded the third highest U.S. valor award after sacrificing his life while holding off an enemy ambush with his .45-caliber pistol, allowing his five-man squad to withdraw to safety.

[ … ]

Sauer ordered his men to withdraw while he laid down cover fire “with only his personal sidearm,” according to the citation. “He was last seen holding his position in the face of overwhelming enemy fire.”

Smith, the officer presiding over the ceremony, described the day as a historic one for the Corps.

“Fifty-one years ago today a lieutenant named Phil Sauer gave his life so that other Marines might keep theirs,” Smith said during the ceremony.

“Armed with a .45 caliber pistol [Sauer] stood his ground against somewhere north of 30 enemy armed with automatic weapons,” Smith told a crowd gathered.

Smith said it was Sauer’s job as the senior Marine that day to take care of his men, and that “he did it with unbelievable courage.”

I do love the .45 ACP round so much, and with John Basilone, there is no shortage of Marines who had to fight with their pistol, and did so very well.

He gave his life in the service of his men.  I wonder why not a CMH?  It can be awarded posthumously.

Marine Corps Confirms Adoption Of Mk 13 Scout Sniper Rifle

BY Herschel Smith
1 year, 6 months ago

TFB:

Back in April TFB reported that the USMC was finally moving to replace the venerable M40 Sniper Rifle. The Corps has confirmed this in a press release announcing the adoption of the Mk 13 Precision Sniper Rifle which will replace the M40A6 currently in service.

The Marine Corps is set to begin fielding the Mk 13 Mod 7 in late 2018, with infantry and recon battalions, as well as scout snipers receiving the weapon. The Mk 13 Mod 7 is already in service with the Marine Corps Forces Special Operations Command (MARSOC).

[ … ]

The Mk 13 Mod 7 is chambered in .300 Winchester Magnum and features a “long-action receiver, stainless steel barrel, and an extended rail interface system for a mounted scope and night vision optic.” The new rifle and round will bring the Marine Corps capability into alignment with that of the US Army’s snipers and those of Special Operations Command.

[ … ]

While the Corps’ press release does not state how many of the new precision rifles have been purchased as we previously reported the USMC’s FY2019 Budget Estimates Justification Book indicates that 356 rifles will be purchased during the 2018 fiscal year at a projected cost of $4.287 million. This puts the per rifle cost at around $12,000.

Excuse me?  $12,000 per rifle?  I could field three times that many rifles for the cost simply by purchasing parts and doing the build myself.  This is a .300 Win Mag with a tactical chassis, bipod and scope.  Good Lord.  The Marine Corps was taken in this deal.  This is why it’s so costly to arm the U.S. Military.  We make idiotic decisions.

One good note, however.  Heretofore the Marine Corps only shot with the .308, and anything stronger usually involved the deployment of the .50 Sasser.  Deploying the .300 Win Mag is a good intermediary step, one that should have been taken long ago.

USMC M38 DMR Not Ready For Battle

BY Herschel Smith
1 year, 6 months ago

TFB:

Despite the document’s overall upbeat tone, it does not present a picture of a system “ready to field”. The optic chosen for the test was the Leupold Mark 4 2.5-8x36mm variable power scope, part number 60150, one mounted to all 9 weapons via a LaRue mount. This particular opticis a strange choice, being a virtual antique by today’s standards (the optics themselves are leftovers from the Mk. 12 SPR program of the early 2000s), and having a mix of mil reticle and MOA adjustments. This latter feature means that an operator cannot make adjustments in the same increments as what is shown on the reticle.

[ … ]

Reportedly, the reason for choosing this optic (the 3-9 version of which is slated for use with the M38 which descended from this test) was simply that they existed in inventory at the USMC logistics base in Albany, left over from 2000s-era Mk. 12 SPRs. This raises the question of exactly what logistical pipeline the M38 will depend on for replacements. If the Leupold scope cannot be procured somehow, then the M38 as a system is unsustainable at the start.

The appendices of the document indicate that the rifle system is far from optimally reliable when equipped with the tester-preferred KAC sound suppressor. Guns in the “Bravo” test group, all of which were equipped with that suppressor, experienced bolt over base malfunctions indicating an extremely high cyclic rate and marginal weapon reliability in the suppressed configuration.

I looked up the Leupold Mark 4 2.5-8x36mm variable power scope and surprisingly found that it had been discontinued and was unavailable.  From an engineering standpoint, it’s nonsense to assert that the entire system is unsustainable if the scope cannot be procured.  The author goes on to explain that the specification cannot be changed, and that the scope is an integral part of the specification.

This is one reason why our military loses wars.  Logistically speaking, it’s a beast.  Only the brass can override specifications, and then only after being studied, presumably at Quantico.  Again, this is nonsense given that there are so many good options for scopes.  My son had better scopes when he was in the Marine Corps as a SAW gunner and DM in the infantry.

The real problem comes eventually, and it is the H&K gun itself.  You mean that H&K is overpriced trash?  Why yes, I think that’s what we’re saying.  You mean that it’s best not to dick around with the Stoner design because modifications means changes in design performance and unintended consequences?  Why yes, I think that’s what we’re saying.  You mean that there is no real need for a piston gun rather than the DI design Stoner built?  Why yes, I think that’s what we’re saying.

A commenter says this after the issue of the battle of Wanat is brought up.

You mean Wanat where the worst possible tactical decision was made to place a base there combined with the worst possible rules of engagement resulted in a situation where the US Army won the battle anyway while inflicting disproportionately higher casualties on the attacking force?

Perhaps the commenter has read my multiple analyses of the battle of Wanat.  As s brief reminder, the big Army’s idiotic notion of COIN meant that the brass negotiated with the tribes for more than one year on the location of the COP, leaving time for the Haqqani forces to deploy to near Battalion size strength, left OP Topside poorly manned (where the vast majority of casualties at Wanat were taken either at Topside or trying to relieve Topside), deployed men in low terrain and thus didn’t control the high ground, left men without CAS, and deployed in a location not amenable to the logistics chain.  And the kill ratio still favored US forces by a wide margin.

Remember what one military reader told me about this battle.

The platoon in Wanat sacrificed control of the key terrain in the area in order to locate closer to the population. This was a significant risk, and I don’t see any indication that they attempted to sufficiently mitigate that risk. I can empathize a little bit – I was the first Marine on deck at Camp Blessing back when it was still Firebase Catamount, in late 2003. I took responsibility for the camp’s security from a platoon from the 10th Mountain Div, and established a perimeter defense around it. Looking back, I don’t think I adequately controlled the key terrain around the camp. The platoon that replaced me took some steps to correct that, and I think it played a significant role when they were attacked on March 22nd of 2004. COIN theorists love to say that the population is the key terrain, but I think Wanat shows that ignoring the existing natural terrain in favor of the population is a risky proposition, especially in Afghanistan.

Robert Scales will still blame the rifle for the battle because he’s invested in the outcome of the decision.  But the gun was a Colt, and we are all aware that Colt had begun to suffer QA problems by this point because of reliance on military contracts.  When you don’t field your gun to civilians en masse, you are insulated from problems with the system.

Colt was low bidder.  If the gun had been a Rock River Arms, Daniel Defense or FN, the guns would have worked until the barrels melted.  Presumably Scales would still have blamed the gun.

I suppose that the USMC fever dream of a 6.5 Creedmoor rifle or some other new gun won’t happen if they’re having trouble with fielding new scopes to their DMs.

Marines Looking To Replace 5.56mm Cartridge

BY Herschel Smith
1 year, 7 months ago

Military.com:

A senior Marine Corps official confirmed today that the service is lockstep with the Army’s effort to search for a rifle round more potent than the current 5.56mm round.

For months, senior Army officials have been telling Congress that the current 5.56mm Enhanced Performance Round is not potent enough to penetrate enemy body armor plates similar to U.S. military-issue rifle plates such as the Enhanced Small Arms Protective Insert, or ESAPI.

As a solution, the Army is experimenting with a plan to replace its M249 squad automatic weapon and M4 carbine with futuristic weapons that fire a 6.5mm case-telescoped round or something that falls between a 5.56mm and a 7.62mm round.

The Marine Corps, which recently decided to buy more M27 5.56mm Infantry Automatic Rifles, has not publically echoed the Army’s concern with 5.56mm until now.

“We are working the Army; we have looked at the 6.5mm Creedmoor with the Army and [Special Operations Command],” Brig. Gen. Joseph Shrader, commander of Marine Corps Systems Command, told Military.com at the annual Sea-Air-Space exposition Wednesday.

“We are lockstep with them looking at a new round.”

Shrader, however, said he did not know if the effort would mean a new infantry weapon for the Marine Corps.

I doubt it will happen given that the U.S. is bankrupt and is having to spend your children’s children’s children’s future inheritance just to pay for entitlements today.

I also wonder if they’ve sufficiently taught them all to aim for heads and hips.  Heads and hips, boys.  Furthermore, this isn’t a new issue and what we have seems to suffice well enough today (although I understand that most of the combat hasn’t been against a so-called near peer actor).

Still, it makes sense to listen to what’s going on.  You do have plans to procure an AR-10 or at least have a bolt action rifle sitting in the gun safe capable of shooting something bigger than a 5.56mm, right?  That’s what I thought.

But remember the first rule of gun club.  Never talk about gun club, and when in doubt, refer back to the first rule.


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