Marine Corps : Electronic Warfare Platform

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The EA-6B Prowler has been the Marine Corps’ electronic warfare platform since the 1971, serving in every major operation to include Vietnam, Desert Shield/Storm, and all post 9/11 conflicts. By the end of fiscal year 2019 (FY19) the Prowler will have flown its final mission and will be officially retired. There is no replacement or additional airframe being added to the fleet to serve in its electronic warfare role. The retirement of an airframe is never an uncomplicated or straightforward task, as we have seen in recent times with the sundown of the CH-46, however a large number of those Marines transitioned into the MV-22B. Unlike the CH-46 program, there is no clear transition path for members of the Prowler community, aircrew or…show more content…
As these squadrons shut down the Marines, aircrew and maintainers alike, will be transferred to the remaining squadron(s), lateral transfer to other platforms, or will in, some cases, transition to civilian life. Given the current number of EA-6B Pilots, Electronic Countermeasure Officers (ECMO), and maintainers there are not currently enough spaces throughout the Marine Corps to absorb everyone. Manpower officials and Headquarters, Marine Corps (HQMC) have stated that there is a plan, not yet published, for currently flying ECMOs to continue their careers and decided to greatly limit the ability of enlisted Maintainers to be promoted by designating the majority of Prowler maintenance MOS’s as “closed” with no allocations for promotion to SSgt or beyond. This has the potential to cause serious morale and motivation issues; Safety departments, and Commanding Officers, across the remaining squadrons need to take this into account. As Marines, of all ranks, we tend to think of ourselves as “fire and forget”; a mentality that espouses: “give me the job, I’ll get it done”. That mentality works in a meritocracy where the successful are recognized/promoted and
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