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Old 12-29-2019, 10:22 AM
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Arrow New in 2020: Marines move to greater naval integration, starting with training change

New in 2020: Marines move to greater naval integration, starting with training changes
By: Todd South - Marine Times - 12-29-19

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U.S. Marines with Combat Logistics Detachment 342 disembark a U.S. Navy landing craft air cushion during exercise Tiger TRIUMPH in Kakinada, India, Nov. 19, 2019. (Lance Cpl. Armando Elizalde/Marine Corps)

How the Marine Corps will shift back its naval roots, as outlined in the new commandant’s planning guidance begins this year.

And a key piece of that initiative, laid out by Gen. David Berger, is naval integration.

Berger hasn’t pulled punches when speaking publicly about what the Marine Corps needs to do ― the role he sees as part of that naval force is to support the fleet in sea denial and deter the pacing threats that are China and Russia.

But naval integration goes beyond putting more Marines on ships.

Much of that will begin at the training level. Training and Education Command staff told Marine Corps Times that while most naval curricula at Marine schools is focused on traditional amphibious operations, new doctrine and standards will include skills Marines need to operate inside enemy sensor and weapons engagement zones within maritime terrain.

That means injecting emerging naval concepts into professional military education, likely changes to the commandant’s reading list, adding a Navy captain to education command staff and potentially increasing the number of naval officers attending Marine Corps schools.

The command will also review and update service concepts and doctrine related to command and control in the Composite Warfare Construct.

“Years of fighting in the desert have atrophied many of the long standing Navy and Marine relationships,” Tom Hartshorne, with TECOM Policy, Standards and Doctrine Division, wrote in a statement.

“Today, we must ensure the Navy and Marine Corps visions of the future are synchronized and nested and ensure that our actions are complimentary to those of the Navy with respect to force design, doctrine, education and training, among other areas,” according to the statement.

All of these changes mean it’s likely that Marine training, schools and doctrine will see a lot more Navy in it that has been the case over the past two decades.

About this writer: Todd South is a Marine veteran of the Iraq War. He has written about crime, courts, government and military issues for multiple publications since 2004. In 2014, he was named a Pulitzer finalist for local reporting on a project he co-wrote about witness problems in gang criminal cases. Todd covers ground combat for Military Times.

O Almighty Lord God, who neither slumberest nor sleepest; Protect and assist, we beseech thee, all those who at home or abroad, by land, by sea, or in the air, are serving this country, that they, being armed with thy defence, may be preserved evermore in all perils; and being filled with wisdom and girded with strength, may do their duty to thy honour and glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

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