Battle Doctrine for Front Line Leaders
MARINE CORPS DEVELOPMENT AND EDUCATION COMMAND QUANTICO VA
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This forceful restatement of the fundamental principles of troop leadership, supplemented by rules based on combat experience in the Solomon Islands Area was prepared by the Third Marine Division, Fleet Marine Force. It is worthy of careful study by every Marine who is or may be charged with the leadership of other Marines in battle. The Senior Commander of a force plans the battle in its broader sense and is responsible for ultimate success or failure. However, once a subordinate unit has been committed to action, he must, for the time being, limit his activities to providing the necessary support and insuring the coordination of all components. Regardless of how well conceived the Senior Commanders plan may be, it can be nullified if his front line platoons are incapable of carrying out the mission assigned. The conduct of the front line rests with company commanders, and their platoon and squad leaders. The front line leader must plan and execute his own battle. He must know his enemy, his own men, and must aggressively employ all of his weapons in coordinated fire and movement. He must personally lead his unit to success. The paramount importance of front line leadership cannot be overestimated.
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