USMC says goodbye to tanks and hello to long-range fires

by Ashley Roque

The US Marine Corps (USMC) is preparing to make a host of sweeping changes to its operating concept with plans to bid adieu to tanks while also expanding its long-range fires capabilities.

It’s been less than a year since General David Berger took the reins as the commandant of the USMC and the four-star general has been swift to lay out changes as to how the service should be manned and operating by 2030 to compete with peer competitors like China and Russia.

“Our force design initiatives are designed to create and maintain a competitive edge against tireless and continuously changing peer adversaries,” the service wrote in a 23 March force redesign announcement. “The force design effort is a threat informed, concept-based approach within a 10-year time horizon, intended to design a force to address National Defense Strategy (NDS) defined threats.”

Corporal Chance Marone, an M1A1 Abrams crewman assigned to India Company, Battalion Landing Team 3/5, 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit stands atop an M1A1 Abrams tank in September 2019. The USMC is planning to scrap its tank battalions in the coming years as part of a force restructuring effort. (USMC)

Corporal Chance Marone, an M1A1 Abrams crewman assigned to India Company, Battalion Landing Team 3/5, 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit stands atop an M1A1 Abrams tank in September 2019. The USMC is planning to scrap its tank battalions in the coming years as part of a force restructuring effort. (USMC)

When the redesign is complete the service anticipates having a force that is smaller and more nimble to support naval expeditionary warfare operations, while also funneling dollars away from legacy systems and towards modernised ones.

On the manpower and force structure front, over the next decade the service will reduce its footprint by 12,000 marines and make the III Marine Expeditionary Force (MEF) formation its main focus with three Marine littoral regiments (MLRs) organised, trained, and equipped for “sea denial and sea control” as part of a modernised III MEF.

https://www.janes.com/defence-news/news-detail/usmc-says-goodbye-to-tanks-and-hello-to-long-range-fires

The US Marine Corps (USMC) is preparing to make a host of sweeping changes to its operating concept ...

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