Formalizing the Marine Corps Advisor Billet
MARINE CORPS COMMAND AND STAFF COLL QUANTICO VA
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When one thinks of military advisors, images of the Vietnam War and Marine advisors like Colonel John W. Ripley and his heroic actions at the bridge of Dong Ha appear as do the successes in advising and training the South Vietnamese Marine Corps. The Marine advisory unit created during the Vietnam War was a unique organization that was carefully structured from its inception, and the advisors received extensive training at the U.S. Army Special Warfare School at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, before deploying. The advisory course there was a formal program specifically designed to educate and train American officers to advise and train foreign forces. Many skills and lessons from Vietnam, however, were lost, and the United States is only slowly relearning them today. Current military advisors must be placed under a formal organization and training program because of the billets demanding requirements. Few advisors possess the unique skill set required of their MOS in-depth proficiency in a foreign language and an understanding of the host nations culture, foreign weapons familiarization, and the ability to advise and train foreign personnel. Current military advisors should be provided in-depth training in all of these areas. Todays fight requires skilled military advisors more than ever. Advisors will help shape foreign relationships in the future and ensure local hosts that the burden will be shared in fighting common enemies.
- Sociology and Law
- Personnel Management and Labor Relations
- Military Forces and Organizations
- Unconventional Warfare