Dissertation

United States Marine Corps Training, Doctrine, and Strategy

Since its founding in 1775, the United States Marine Corps has been the premier amphibious warfare branch of the United States and has operated in the air, on land, and at sea. Unfortunately, for the past twenty years, the Marine Corps has found itself being used as the second land army for the United States, something that is not what they were meant to do. This trend undermines the purpose of the Marine Corps and the lethality of the United States military. This paper examines the current and historical Marine Corps in relation to the other four military services and concludes how the Marine Corps needs to adjust their training, doctrine, and strategy to adjust to the changing landscape of modern warfare, as well as to remain unique within the United States military. The conclusions drawn are as follows. The Marine Corps needs to add more technical skills to their training, as well as train more in amphibious and expeditionary operations. The Marine Corps needs to undergo a doctrinal change concerning special operations, and modernize their doctrine that every Marine is a rifleman, as well as double down on their expeditionary and amphibious doctrine. Lastly, the Marines need to shift their strategy even more to small unit tactics and be more maritime focused. This will allow the Marines to be more prepared for conflicts in the 21st century and also not only be unique, but essential to the United States military for the future.

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