|103 United States Marine Corps Mission and Organization Fundamentals
[a] Marine Corps Common Skills Handbook, Book 1A (PCN50600000900)
[b] MCRP 5-12D, Organization of Marine Corps Forces (PCN 14400005000)
________________________ GRAPHICS BASE LINE __________________________
Discuss the seven elements of the Marine Corps mission. [ref. a, p. 1-2-1]
Provide Fleet Marine Forces with combined arms and supporting air components for service with the United States Fleet in the seizure or defense of advanced naval bases and for the conduct of such land operations as may be essential to the execution of a naval campaign.
Provide detachments and organizations for service on armed vessels of the Navy and security detachments for the protection of naval property at naval stations and bases.
Develop, in coordination with the Army, Navy, and Air Force, the doctrine, tactics, techniques, and equipment employed by landing forces in amphibious operations.
Provide Marine forces for airborne operations, in coordination with the Army, Navy, and Air Force, according to the doctrine established by the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
Develop, in coordination with the Army, Navy, and Air Force, the doctrine, procedures, and equipment for airborne operations.
Expand peacetime components to meet wartime needs according to the joint mobilization plans.
Perform such other duties as the President may direct.
Discuss the two parallel chains of command that exist within the Marine Corps.
[ref. b, p. 1-1]
Two parallel chains of command—Service and operational
The Service chain begins with the President, through the Secretary of Defense
and continues through the Secretary of the Navy and the Commandant of the
The operational chain runs from the President, through the Secretary of Defense,
directly to commanders of combatant commands for missions and forces
assigned to their commands. Marine Corps component commanders provide
operational forces to commanders of combatant commands and other operational
commanders as required.
Identify and discuss the three Marine Corps operating forces. [ref. b, pp. 1-1 thru 1-3]
The Marine Corps’ operating forces consist of:
Marine Corps forces (MARFOR) Marine Corps forces are organized as MAGTFs and are either employed as part of naval expeditionary forces or separately as part of larger joint or combined forces. The commanders of MARFOR Atlantic and Pacific serve as Marine Corps component commanders to their respective combatant commanders and may also serve as commanding generals of Fleet Marine Forces (FMFs) Atlantic, Pacific, and Europe. As commanding generals, with the status of a naval type commander, they provide forces for service with Commander US Atlantic Fleet, Commander US Pacific Fleet, and Commander US Naval Forces Europe, respectively.
Marine Corps security forces (MCSF) at naval installations- The MCSF include approximately 3,400 Marines who protect key naval installations and facilities worldwide. Although not assigned to combatant commands, they are part of the operating forces of the Marine Corps. These security forces include Marine barracks and Marine security force companies in the continental United States (CONUS) and abroad, as well as Marine detachments afloat.
Marine security guard detachments at embassies and consulates around the globe - The Marine security guard battalion provides forces to the Department of State for embassy security. These Marines are currently assigned to 121 diplomatic posts in 115 countries throughout the world
Discuss the purpose of the Headquarters Marine Corps (HQMC). [ref. b, p.1-6]
Headquarters, U.S. Marine Corps, consists of the Commandant of the Marine Corps and those staff agencies that advise and assist the Commandant in discharging those responsibilities prescribed by law and higher authority. The internal organization of Headquarters, U.S. Marine Corps is described in the Headquarters Marine Corps Organization Manual.
The Commandant of the Marine Corps is directly responsible to the Secretary of the Navy for the administration, discipline, internal organization, training, requirements, efficiency, and readiness of the Marine Corps; the operation of the Marine Corps materiel support system; and the total performance of the Marine Corps
Describe, in general, a Marine air-ground task force (MAGTF). [ref. b, p. 2-1]
The MAGTF is the Marine Corps’ principle organization for the conduct of all missions across the range of military operations. MAGTFs are balanced, combined-arms forces with organic ground, aviation, and sustainment elements. They are flexible, task-organized forces that can respond rapidly to a contingency anywhere in the world and are able to conduct a variety of missions. Although organized and equipped to participate as part of naval expeditionary forces, MAGTFs also have the capability to conduct sustained operations ashore. The MAGTF provides a combatant commander or other operational commander with a versatile expeditionary force that is capable of responding to a broad range of crisis and conflict situations. MAGTFs are organized, trained, and equipped to perform missions ranging from humanitarian assistance to peacekeeping to intense combat and can operate in permissive, uncertain, and hostile environments. They may be shore-or sea-based in support of joint and multinational major operations and/or campaigns. MAGTFs deploy as amphibious, air-contingency, or maritime prepositioning forces (MPFs), either as part of a naval expeditionary force or via strategic lift. They can present a minimal or a highly visible presence and are able to project combat power ashore in measured degrees or can provide secure staging areas ashore for follow-on forces. MAGTFs are prepared for immediate deployment overseas into austere operating environments, bringing all means necessary to accomplish the mission. When deployed aboard amphibious shipping, MAGTFs maintain a continuous presence at strategic locations around the globe and can be rapidly moved to and indefinitely stationed at the scene of potential trouble. The MAGTF provides the JFC with the capability of reconstitution, which is the ability of an expeditionary force to regenerate, reorganize, replenish, and reorient itself for a new mission without having to return to its home base.
Discuss the organization and mission of the following Marine Expeditionary Forces (MEF) elements and their components: [ref. b, pp. 2-2, 2-3, 6-1, 6-2]
Command Element (CE) - The CE is the MAGTF headquarters. It is task organized to provide command and control capabilities (including intelligence and communications) necessary for effective planning, direction, and execution of all operations.
The MEF CE consists of:
G-1 Division (personnel and administration).
G-2 Division (intelligence and counterintelligence).
G-3 Division (operations and training).
G-4 Division (logistics).
G-5 Division (plans).
G-6 Division (communications and information systems).
Communication Security Management Office.
Special Operations Training Group.
Staff Judge Advocate Branch.
Public Affairs Office Branch.
Mission: To provide command and control of the Marine Expeditionary Force (MEF). The MEF Command Element (CE) is responsible for the command, control, direction, planning and coordination of corps-level air, ground, and logistical operations of assigned forces, normally consisting of one or more Marine divisions, Marine aircraft wings, and force service support groups, and other separate units.
Marine Air Wing, Air Combat Element (ACE) - The ACE is task-organized to support the MAGTF mission by performing some or all of the six functions of Marine aviation. The ACE is normally built around an aviation organization that is augmented with appropriate air command and control, combat, combat support, and CSS units. The ACE can operate effectively from ships, expeditionary airfields, or austere forward operating sites and can readily and routinely transition between sea bases and expeditionary airfields without loss of capability. The ACE can vary in size and composition from an aviation detachment with specific capabilities to one or more MAWs.
Marine Division, Ground Combat Element (GCE) - The GCE is task organized to conduct ground operations in support of the MAGTF mission. It is normally formed around an infantry organization reinforced with requisite artillery, reconnaissance, armor, and engineer forces and can vary in size and composition from a rifle platoon to one or more Marine divisions
Force Service Support Group (FSSG), Combat Service Support Group (CSSE) -The CSSE is task organized to provide the full range of CSS functions and capabilities needed to support the continued readiness and sustainability of the MAGTF as a whole. It is formed around a CSS headquarters and may vary in size and composition from a support detachment to one or more Marine FSSG
103.7 Identify the location of the three standing MEFs (MEF). [ref. b, p. 2-3]
I Marine expeditionary force (I MEF), based in southern California and Arizona;
II Marine expeditionary force (II MEF), based in North and South Carolina;
III Marine Expeditionary Force (III MEF), based in Japan and Hawaii. Each standing
MEF consists of a permanent CE and one Marine division, MAW, and FSSG.
103.8 Discuss the organization and mission of the following Marine Expeditionary Brigades (MEB) elements and their components: [ref. a, p. 1-2-33]
The MEB is a MAGTF built around a reinforced infantry regiment, an aircraft group, and a Brigade Service Support Group (BSSG). A brigadier general normally commands the MEB. As an expeditionary force, it is capable of rapid deployment and employment via amphibious shipping, strategic airlift, marrying with Maritime prepositioned Force (MPF) assets, or any combination thereof.
Command Element (CE), - exercises command and control, is commanded by a general, and contains a SRIG detachment.
Air Combat Element, (ACE) - is a Marine aircraft group
Ground Combat Element, (GCE) - is a reinforced infantry regiment
Combat Service Support Group, (CSSE) - is a Brigade Service Support Group (BSSG).
103.9 Discuss the organization and mission of the following Marine Expeditionary Units (MEUs) (Special Operations Capable(SOC)) elements and their components:
[ref. b, pp. 2-4, 2-5, 6-3, 6-4]
The Marine expeditionary unit (special operations capable (MEU (SOC)) is the standard forward-deployed Marine expeditionary organization. Marine Corps Forces Atlantic and Pacific maintain forward-deployed MEUs (SOC) in the Mediterranean Sea, the western Pacific, and the Indian Ocean or Arabian Gulf region. The MEU (SOC) can be thought of both as a self- contained operating force capable of missions of limited scope and duration and as a forward-deployed extension of the Marine expeditionary force. The MEU (SOC) mission is to provide the NCA and the combatant commanders with a forward deployed, sea-based, rapid crisis response capability to execute a full range of military operations. It is organized, trained, and equipped as a self-sustaining, general-purpose expeditionary MAGTF that possesses the capability to conduct operations across the spectrum of conflict, from military operations other than war, to amphibious and other conventional operations in support of various contingency requirements, including selected maritime special operations such as:
Reconnaissance and surveillance.
Tactical recovery of aircraft and personnel (TRAP).
Seizure/recovery of offshore energy facilities.
Seizure/recovery of selected personnel or materiel.
Visit, board, search, and seizure of vessels.
In-extremis hostage recovery.
Command Element - A standing CE. The mission of the MEU (SOC) CE is to provide command and control to the MEU (SOC). The MEU (SOC) CE is responsible for the command and control, direction, planning, and coordination of air, ground, and logistic operations of assigned forces, consisting of a Marine battalion landing team, Marine composite squadron, MEU service support group, and other separate units.
MEU (SOC) CE contains the following sections: Command section, Chaplain section, S-1 section,S-2 section,S-3 section,. S-4 section. - S-6 section. - Headquarters commandant. - Public affairs section.
Marine Air Wing, Air Combat Element (ACE) - A reinforced helicopter squadron with transport, utility, and attack helicopters, a detachment of vertical/short takeoff and landing (V/STOL) fixed-wing attack aircraft, and other detachments as required.
Ground Combat Element (GCE) - An infantry battalion reinforced with artillery, recon-naissance, engineer, armor, assault amphibian units, and other detachments as required.
Combat Service Support Group, (CSSE) - A task-organized CSSE.
103.10 Identify the location of each of the seven MEUs (SOC) command elements and the MEFs in which it resides. [ref. b, p. 2-4]
There are seven standing MEU (SOC) CEs.
Residing within I MEF are the 11th, 13th, and 15th MEUs (SOC);
Residing within II MEF are the 22nd, 24th, and 26th MEUs (SOC);
Residing within III MEF is the 31st MEU (SOC).
103.11 Discuss the organization and mission of the following Special Purpose Marine Air Ground Task Force elements (SPMAGTF)r components: [ref. a, p. 1-2-32]
Although not a basic MAGTF, a fourth type of MAGTF organization shall be designated as a Special Purpose MAGTF (SPMAGTF). It is normally used for a special purpose (e.g., disaster relief, humanitarian assistance, noncombatant evacuation operation, or security operations) or in unique instances (e.g., Exxon Valdez oil spill containment) where employment of one of the three basic MAGTFs would be inappropriate
Command Element (CE) - is structured to conduct command and control of operational functions and is tailored to the mission and task organization of the SPMAGTF.
Air Combat Element (ACE) - is a task-organized detachment of aircraft.
Ground Combat Element (GCE) - is composed of at least a platoon-sized element
Combat Service Support Group, (CSSE) - is task-organized to meet the specific service support requirements of the SPMAGTF and is centered on the unit designated to provide most of the service support.