Small Wars Journal

Every Marine a Rifleman No More?

Sun, 05/07/2017 - 4:28pm

Every Marine a Rifleman No More? by Jeff Schogol, Marine Corps Times

Former Defense Secretary Ash Carter shocked the military last summer when he called for boosting the military’s high-tech force by finding civilians who already have those vital skills like cyber security and offer them “lateral entry” into the military — a chance to skip boot camp and put on a uniform as a mid-career rank from Day One.

In effect, he suggested having a Marine Corps that included "Marines," pinned with a staff sergeant’s rocker, who had never been to boot camp and spent no time in the junior tanks. Marines scattered across the force who had little knowledge of Marine culture and whose colleagues quietly questioned their status as a “real Marine.”

Nobody in the military was more skeptical than the Marines.

Yet now as the Corps begins planning to grow the force significantly during the next several years, the controversial idea is back on the table, Marine Corps Times has learned. One way or the other, the Marine Corps needs those high-tech capabilities. Currently there are big shortages in some of those career fields. It’s a top priority for today’s leaders…

Read on.


Is this something the Navy can provide, like they do medics?

J Harlan

Sun, 05/07/2017 - 8:47pm

If there is an answer it probably lies in the reserves. Make reserve service for people with these skills very positive- normal training revolve around weapons and adventure sports- while "capturing" their skill set for operations. Whiz Kid X may not sign on to be a computer geek at 10% of his salary at Apple but he might sign up to fire claymores and M240s for that rate of pay one weekend per month. When you really need him to do his digital shtick you ask him to voluntold. Ditto for anything else you can think of that has a direct civilian equivalent but is paid far more on civvy street.