Portal:United States Marine Corps

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The United States Marine Corps Portal

Seal of the United States Marine Corps.svg

The United States Marine Corps (USMC) is a branch of the United States Armed Forces responsible for providing force projection from the sea, using the mobility of the United States Navy to rapidly deliver combined-arms task forces. It is one of seven uniformed services of the United States. In the civilian leadership structure of the United States military, the Marine Corps is a component of the United States Department of the Navy, often working closely with U.S. naval forces for training, transportation, and logistic purposes; however, in the military leadership structure the Marine Corps is a separate branch.

Captain Samuel Nicholas formed two battalions of Continental Marines on 10 November 1775 in Philadelphia as naval infantry. Since then, the mission of the Marine Corps has evolved with changing military doctrine and American foreign policy. The Marine Corps has served in every American armed conflict and attained prominence in the 20th century when its theories and practices of amphibious warfare proved prescient and ultimately formed the cornerstone of the Pacific campaign of World War II. By the mid-20th century, the Marine Corps had become the dominant theorist and practitioner of amphibious warfare. Its ability to rapidly respond on short notice to expeditionary crises gives it a strong role in the implementation and execution of American foreign policy.

The United States Marine Corps includes approximately 182,000 active duty Marines (as of 2016) and 38,500 reserve Marines. It is the smallest of the United States' armed forces in the Department of Defense (the United States Coast Guard is smaller, about one-fifth the size of the Marine Corps, but is normally under the Department of Homeland Security). The Marine Corps is nonetheless larger than the armed forces of many significant military powers; for example, it is larger than the active duty Israel Defense Forces, or the entire British Army.

This month in USMC history

Did you know...?

  • ... before "Semper Fidelis" became the Marine Corps official motto in 1883, there were three unofficial mottos: "By Sea and by Land," "Fortitudine," and "To the shores of Tripoli."
  • ... Marine Corps pilots are now flying more flight hours per pilot than the U.S. Air Force Pilots. See Marine Corps Times Feb 15, 2018
  • ... Overcoming nerve damage to his hand from the Battle of Iwo Jima, in 1992, Colonel Charles Waterhouse became the only Marine to receive the title "USMC Artist-in-Residence".
  • ... Sergeant Reckless, a war horse for 5th Marines made 51 trips to haul ammo for the recoilless rifle section during Battle for Outpost Vegas of the Korean War and was wounded twice in battle.
  • ... 5th Marines is the only Marine regiment to fight in every major war since World War I and is the most highly decorated regiment in the Marine Corps.
  • ... The Small Wars Manual, published by the Marine Corps in 1940, and still considered a classic in military science, has a chapter dedicated to the supervision of elections.
  • ... Brigadier General Smedley Butler created a monument for Stonewall Jackson’s arm during a training exercise in western Virginia in 1921 after locating it buried in a wooden box.


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Selected biography

LtGen John F Goodman.jpg

LtGen John F. Goodman (retired) was a star football player in high school and as the quarterback for the University of Arizona. He received his draft notice immediately following his college graduation, as he was leaving to go to rookie training camp as a professional football player. He began his military service with the U.S. Army during the Vietnam War — during which he earned the Soldier's Medal, the Bronze Star with "V" Device, and a Purple Heart. He entered the U.S. Marine Corps in 1971, becoming an aviator. He flew over 4,100 hours during his years of service. He retired from military service in 2008, with over 41 years of active and reserve service.

Selected quote

"Generations in the future need to be able to hear that it is important to serve your country; and, it is important to learn what service really is."

~ Lt Gen. John F. Goodman, USMC (retired), 2017. Valley to Vietnam: Lt. Gen. John F. Goodman on YouTube

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