How USMC Commandant is reshaping force without increasing the budget

| September 25, 2020

To put it simply, he’s just getting rid of all the expensive stuff. Aircraft squadrons are being trimmed of planes, the Marine Corps tank program is no more, and artillery is getting rid of most of their traditional cannons in favor of high mobility artillery rocket system, or HIMARS.

The Marine Corps is cutting or reducing these programs to free up money in the budget to reinvest in what is needed in the future fight against China, Berger said.

The plan would require Marines to “live” and operate well within range of China’s missile defense system, playing a sea denial and skirmish role against the Chinese military as the rest of the U.S. joint force moves in to win the war.

In order to survive against the Chinese missile threat the Corps will have to change its logistics network and work to reduce its signature in order to hide from the enemy, Berger said Wednesday.

Berger, a former Recon Marine, seems to want the Marines to return to their smaller, more elastic, amphibious role. He’ll either be remembered as a visionary or an abject failure. He’s a visionary if he’s seen in decades hence for seeing a future conflict with China in which the Marines are able to deploy quickly to hold the line until larger Army units arrive. He’s a failure if he gets rid of major weapons systems that will be hard and expensive to re-procure that are needed in any future conflict.

Source; Marine Corps Times

Category: Big Pentagon, Marines

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
USMC Steve

Berger also cut force strength by over 18000 Marines in a Corps that is too small already. If he really wanted to make beneficial changes other than killing off our heavy hitting weapons, he could have added another regiment to each Division.

This guy is going to be a bigger fuckup than that airwinger we had.


I’m unsure about it. I have to figure that there HAS to be some compelling reason to do this – I just can’t figure out what it is. Removing heavy, maintenance intensive things like tanks would make sense if you got something for it. What I don’t understand is why you would reduce infantry units. I thought that would be the point – Less tanks for more cruchies (tanker term for those not on a tank). As of yet, I don’t get it. As for reducing towed arty, I’m not sure why you would do that, either. I work on the HIMARS and M270 program out here in the Military Industrial Complex, so they are near and dear to my heart. (I missed out on working with HIMARS, personally, as I was Lat-moved out of arty in 2003). Problem is that GMLRS, ATACMS and (eventually) PRSM is (and will be) WAY MORE expensive than your typical M107 round. HIMARS and M270 take WAY MORE time to reload. I jus’ don’t have the vision I guess. Time will tell. . .

“This guy is going to be a bigger fuckup than that airwinger we had.”

Nah! That will never be topped! 😉

The Stranger

My cousin is a Marine artillery officer and when visiting family earlier this year, my uncle (his dad) mentioned the artillery reduction. It sounded dumb to me then and it sounds even dumber now with the elimination of armored forces. This seems to fly in the face of everything the Corps has done over the past century in terms of combined arms. It made sense that the Marines, due to their small overall size and expeditionary nature, would utilize their own assets so as to never be without critical support. Marine artillery, Marine armor, Marine aviation that would prioritize close air support for the ground troops. We’ll see. Unfortunately, the only way to find out if this is a bad idea is at the cost of American lives.

Jeff LPH 3, 63-66

Next time I go to Wendy’s, I’ll get a Berger without the buns, lettuce and tomato. Sounds like what you are doing Berger.

USMC Steve

That is why they call it a “uniform”.




Yeah, they’re all blue-eyed, blond Caucasian guys. It’s obviously a lean toward the Nordic types, the Goths, the Vandals and the Huns and that sort of thing.

Obviously, they’re all spearchukkers, too, the kind of GUYS that will just keep everyone else from getting promotions because they’re such a stereotype.

Moving on….



Speaking of spearchukkers…


5th/77th FA

Might not can use that term anymore ninja. Folks might think that you are talking about the OPFOR at Rork’s Drift in 1879 instead of a former football throwing doctor. And my personal choice of cookie cutter Marines would be the matched trio at the top. Didn’t she get an OCS Appointment, go back to her natural hair color and become a JAG Officer? 😆 😆 😛 😎

On the subject of Combat Power, it would seem to me that the more weapons that you and can bring to bear, the better off you will be. Better to have it and not need it, than to need it and not have it. But they may just be the Gun Bunny in me coming out. You may remember that the Army was told by the former Army Air Corps that they wouldn’t need close in air support in the modern battlefield back in the late ’40s. Welp Korea proved them wrong and Army had to struggle to provide it themselves. WEB Griffin’s novels “The Brotherhood of War” covered that, with the “fiction” being very close to what real life was all about, war hardware wise anyhow.

Unless some things change very drastically, in our favor, the US or its designated allies, or both/all, WILL, eventually if not sooner, have a war with China. It is bound to happen, unless, of course, Biden and Company sell us out to them in the next few years. We cannot replace the consumable stores for our high tech systems like we can the “dumb bombs/shells” of wars past. And the high tech/priced platforms. Think we can turn out B-2/B-21s like we did B-17s/B-29s?

Ivan still has T-34s ready to roll and fire. How many M1-A1 Abrams we got?

Slow Joe

We have quick deploying units in the army.

Perhaps it is time to disband the Marines?

*runs for cover*

USMC Steve

That would be stupid as well. We have to be around to rescue the Army when they get in over their heads.

And the whole logic flow of this mess does not track. The Army is only a bit more than two and a half times the size of the Corps. If we got into a major kerfuffle, there ain’t enough of ANYONE to go around. Like in Desert Storm.


True “War” Story:

So there I was, in Okinawa, in the III MEF AOR, minding my own Business…and I took off my BDU jacket to roll up the Sleeves the Army way…

Next thing I know, I was surrounded by 4-5 Marines. They wanted to see how it was done (Army covered the light part of the BDU sleeve and made it dress right dress).

I gave a 2 minute course on sleeve rolling. And then it was my turn to have an inquiring mind.

I asked “Why do you all not have Name Tags on our BDUs?”

Answer? “We don’t need them. We are so small that we all know one another”.

End of War Story.


Prior Service



Sounds like Berger is trying to finish the job Amos started.

The Brute Krulak Center put out a nice U.S. Marine Corps Portmortem for their 2019 essay contest. Sounds like active duty Marines have already determined that Berger is a flaming abject failure