America

Saturday, April 23, 2005

Need More Marine Involvement at SOCOM? Rumsfeld finds a way...

The Navy League's magazine, Sea Power reported: "Secretary of Defense Donald H. Rumsfeld is pressuring the Marine Corps and U.S. Special Operations Command [SOCOM] to reach a consensus on an expanded role for the Corps, and the possible formation of a Marine special operations component within the command."

Of course, one way around the problem of lack of "consensus" (meaning "cooperation?") is to put a new boss in place as in appointing, for the first time ever, a Marine to be the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff as reported here. General Peter Pace, a Vietnam combat veteran (and we're running out of those on active duty) seems like a great choice to me.

I think he'll be able to smooth the path that has had some stumbling blocks:
At the center of the interservice struggle is DoD’s planned transformation of the military, the operational strain on the Army and SOCOM’s growing clout within the U.S. military hierarchy.

SOCOM was created to provide an acquisitions channel for specialized weapons and equipment and a ready force of specially trained warriors in support of joint and regional commands. But SOCOM’s purpose was enlarged in the aftermath of 9/11 and the advent of the global war on terrorism, and the Pentagon’s increased emphasis on covert and specialized unit tactics.

Rumsfeld designated SOCOM, which is largely comprised of Army units, as the lead joint command for planning the ongoing war. The resulting strain on those Army units, and the increasing need for additional special operations forces, are cited as the reasons he wants to push the Corps into the SOCOM fold.

The expertise in small units tactics with the firepower and integrated command and control the Marine Corps has organically throughout its force structure make it a natural for integration into SOCOM. The Corps has always had special operations units, and assigns Marines to SOCOM as needed.
Looks like a pretty good "purple suit" fit to me. 'Course, I'm just a "squid."

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