U.S. MARINE CORPS
Assault Amphibian Vehicles of Company E, Battalion Landing Team, 2nd Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment, the ground combat element of the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit, occupy the beach during an amphibious landing exercise with U.S.
Navy forces and Republic of Korea Marines at Mallipo Beach, Republic of Korea, in March 2007. The U.S. Marine Corps
is working to return to, and expand on, its naval expeditionary roots and re-establish its close relationship with the Navy.
organizations within the Marine Corps, the Security
Cooperation Education and Training Center and the
Center for Advanced Operational Culture Learning.
“Currently, we’re training everybody for the Middle
East, and we’re sending everybody to the Middle East,
but this is what’s next,” he said. “We’re trying to look
a couple of years out as we start to send Marines to
other areas of the world.”
When fully operational, Abbott said SC MAGTFs
would be “built around an infantry battalion” and look
similar to a typical MAGTF in its basic structure, with
logistics, aviation and ground elements, and possibly
some additional command-and-control elements. The
infantrymen, he said, would be the primary trainers,
providing Foreign Internal Defense (FID) instruction
to local forces, but other MAGTF elements also could
be called upon to provide training.
“Frequently, our partners don’t need someone to
teach them marksmanship. What they need is someone to teach them how to fix a truck or how to run a
supply dump or run a command post,” Abbott said.
For the aviation element, he said there would be a
need to have “assault support to move the units
around to the different training locations and, depending on what the combatant commander’s demands are,
they could end up running a no-fly zone.”
SC MAGTFs, Abbott said, typically would go on six-month deployments. The key to getting SC MAGTFs
deployed, he said, will be re-emphasizing the Corps’
expeditionary roots and its relationship with the Navy.
“It’s obvious that we have grown away from the
Navy over the years and as we’ve gotten more heavily
involved in the war in Iraq, a protracted land combat,”
Abbott said. “We’ve got ships going out today with no
Marines on them. Clearly, we want to get back to our
According to Capt. Eric Odderstol, Navy Expeditionary Combat Command (NECC) chief of staff,
“Our job now is to enhance interoperability to better
implement the Cooperative Maritime Strategy.
Working-level discussions are now in progress
between NECC and the Marine Corps in order to identify synergies in equipping, training, logistics support