The Marine Corps And The Corps

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In recent history, the Marine Corps offered only limited options to the combatant commander to respond to crises. This response capability was usually resident within the Marine Expeditionary Unit in the form of noncombatant evacuation operations, foreign humanitarian assistance, and embassy reinforcement. However, as the global climate has shifted from a Cold War, or even OIF I, paradigm to one of small conflicts or crises of short duration. Within this context the Marine Corps continues to seek to match its unique capability sets to the dynamic challenges of the 21st century, developing concepts such as Expeditionary Force 21, which seeks to provide options for contingencies through globally dispersed assets and capabilities. The Marine Corps ability to execute in such an environment hinges on the MAGTF’s center of gravity, the Aviation Combat Element (ACE), and specifically its ‘game-changer’, the MV-22 Osprey. The unique capabilities of this aircraft, especially when coupled with the refueling capability of the C-130, truly provide a unique and efficient method to flow forces over distances inconceivable merely a generation ago. In this instance, the aircraft is the innovation: determining to apply a unique capability in regions of instability is simply logical. However, the semantics of what qualifies innovation is inconsequential. Marines, deployed as a self-contained package, with all of their associated things, can rapidly respond to crisis, bridge gaps between

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