Aviation as the key to Navy-Marine Integration

The Corps has drifted away from the Navy over the last two decades, and it didn’t need the Navy in Iraq or Afghanistan. Shortages of amphibious shipping combined with a need to justify force structure gave birth to shore-based SPMAGTFs. This trend has led to less-than-seamless integration between the Marine Corps and Navy. In the future fight, this gap leaves amphibious forces more vulnerable and less deadly than they should be. 

The new Commandant of the Marine Corps, General David Berger, said in his planning guidance, “…there is a need to reestablish a more integrated approach to operations in the maritime domain.” By virtue of their range and speed, aviation assets are inherently able to bridge gaps. Amphibious forces usually take this as meaning between the sea and the land, but it also bridges gaps between forces at sea.

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