THE BIG NAVY AND SMALL WARS:BFA AND THE FDNF
“As the USMC (United States Marine Corps) has largely become a separate entity (you’re more likely to see a Marine jet squadron onboard an aircraft carrier than you are a Marine standing the once traditional role of a sentry on the ship) from the US Navy, the Navy’s new CNO,Admiral Mullen, has decided to return the service to its “go-ashore” essence with a daring plan to establish a naval infantry. While details are not yet fully available, the “Expeditionary Combat Battalion” will likely consist of infantry elements that can project power ashore and support forces (like hospital corpsmen) that back them up. There are other interesting proposals floating around to go along with this; like a civil affairs augment to Seabee battalions, special warfare combat helicopter squadrons and extensive foreign language training for some if not most of the ECG forces.
…Admiral Mullen must have read “Pentagon’s New Map”, as he’s incorporating PNM related ideas into his new strategy for the Fleet with this Leviathan/Sys Admin force in the making. The “Leviathan” force, the ECG, can go ashore and launch raids (like punitive expeditions or counterterrorism operations) or incorporate the use of lethal force to stabilize the situation (like in a war-ravaged coastal city in a place like Liberia, Indonesia or Mexico) to prepare for the deployment of the larger Sys Admin force (corpsmen, Seabees, logistics types (SKs-storekeepers), master at arms (the military police of the Navy) to begin humanitarian aid or short-term peacekeeping. The scope of the Navy’s operations overseas in the future will increasingly call for a Navy that is able to conduct brown-water ops (requiring vessels capable of traversing coastal waterways with relative ease as well as on occasion certain in-land waterways) as well as ashore operations. “
An excellent and timely post.
The U.S. Navy has a mixed record, historically speaking, entering into such operations which occurred often in the 19th century as commanders on the scene improvised with ad hoc expeditionary uses of sailors in Latin America, Africa and Asia. The caveat of course was that these were spontaneous reactions to circumstances and that the sailors were being used for a kind of warfare for which they had not been trained.
The WWII Seabees, of course, were often almost as formidible at combat as they were at engineering ( or doing both simultaneously). They were never crack combat units but ” tough” is not inaccurate as a descriptor.
This will be interesting to see if these Navy proposals shape up to run with or against the ” Jointness” philosophy.