The Leavenworth Way of War

History Discussion at CGSC

Semper Fi!

The transformation model proposed by miltiary historians Allan Millet and Williamson Murray proposes a number of different factors that can influence an organization’s ability to be innovative and transform itself.  What factors do you think most influenced the USMC’s adoption of amphibious warfare doctrine in the interwar years?  In particular, was the USMC more driven by war plans and the nature of the threat than it was by the very real possibility that budget constraints might eliminate it as an organization?  In an era of real budget restrictions that the US military will face in the future, what core capability does the modern USMC bring to the table?  Does that capability warrant a USMC that is 25% the size of the army?  Will there be a future fight over the USMC and its mission or is the USMC so much of a part of the American military tradition that it doesn’t have to justify its mission?


January 24, 2013 - Posted by | Current Events, H200, military history, Professional Military Education | , , , , , , , , ,


  1. I believe the USMC’s adaption of amphibious warfare was out of survival. In order to maintain their survival the searched for a gap in a capability the US military needed, took it and mastered it better than anyone else. The USMC continues to be amphibious warfare expert and a Rapidly Ready Force (RRF) which can act as a deterrence force for the USA. They have also become experts in Close Air Support (CAS) which will serve as a core capability that is needed not only for their own RRF but also support other branches of service. The capability of amphibious warfare, CAS, and a RRF warrants the USMC’s size and strength. The USMC also picks up the security needs of consulates around the world. I believe there will not be a fight over the USMC and their mission, they provide a needed capability that they have mastered and have proven themselves throughout the last decade. That is not to say that they will not downsize, but the USMC will live on!

    Comment by Doug Serie, 11B | January 25, 2013

  2. Since its creation in 1775, the Corps’ role has expanded significantly. The Marine Corp’s has always been held in high regards for its stealth, flexible performance. The Marines have a unique mission statement, and, alone among the branches of the U.S. armed forces, “shall, at any time, be liable to do duty in the forts and garrisons of the United States, on the seacoast, or any other duty on shore, as the President, at his discretion, shall direct.” Marine tactics and doctrine tends to emphasize aggressiveness and the offensive, compared to Army tactics for similar units. They have been central in developing groundbreaking tactics for maneuver warfare; while they can also be credited with the development of helicopter insertion doctrine and modern amphibious assault and with that being said, I argue that their accomplishes in concert with thier uniqueness will never be questioned. And most importantly they are famously noted for the ability to accomplish more with less. And in our time of financial crisis, some would take a stance that their mission is much less costly than sister forces., which stands alone as a true asset to our defense team.

    Comment by Detrice Mosby | March 25, 2013

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