The Long War

When I was studying in France back in 2009 one of the many unique opportunities I had was to attend the Collogue Guerre Irreguliere/Irregular Warfare Conference at Camp Coetquidan.  And one of the things a British General said was that NATO knew Afghanistan would be a 20 year war.  That it would take an entire generation to fight and rebuild that country. The reason I bring this up, one of our categories here on OPFOR is The Long War.  I’ve had this sneaking suspicion that my generation’s war never ended.  That this irregular enemy, the non-state actor, would continue to […]

Yes, We Love Us Some General Dunford

It’s about damn time. (Not just for me to post it, but for it to happen.) He’s a Marine’s Marine, but don’t take my word for it. Here’s another Marine’s Marine– “Retired Sgt. Maj. Carlton Kent, who served as the 16th sergeant major of the Marine Corps, said Dunford would prioritize Marines and their families and excel in relating to troops in all ranks. ‘He’s the damn epitome of a Marine leader,’ Kent said.”

R.I.P., Major Sam Griffith

Sad news from my old reserve unit, 4th ANGLICO: Major Sam Griffith was killed in action yesterday in Afghanistan. A great guy, a great Marine, a great leader; a husband and father. He was a pleasure to serve with. He will be sorely missed. *** And when I heard of this earlier today, the man who told me– also a Marine from 4th ANGLICO– was dwelling on vengeance. He, and other West Palm Beach Marines, are now or will soon be in a position to do so. “For the Burmans said/That a white man’s head/Must be paid for with heads […]

(Retd.) UPDATED

UPDATE: Many thanks to all of you– I truly appreciate the kind words. Got some good photos too, from readers like Tony-Sahib and VFRMarine, and some nice emails from Olga and several others. For those of you who are interested, yesterday marked my last day as an active member of the U.S. Marine Corps. After nearly 22 years in uniform, about half active and half reserve, it’s come to an end. If you like, you can join the virtual retirement party by raising a glass at 1900 eastern time, tonight 1 March 2011, wherever you are. Feel free to send […]

CALLING "VFR MARINE"…

VFR MARINE! Report for duty immediately– this hag needs a Krav Magah lesson, if you get my meaning:

A Tale of Two Marines

By now everyone has heard of Matthew Hoh, a former Marine and Iraq vet who loudly and publicly resigned from his post as the senior Foreign Service official in Zabul Province. I’d like you to meet Gunnery Sergeant D, who has also recently left Zabul Province. Left, that is, after successfully completing a tour of duty attached to SF and EOD units. He’s been put in for the Bronze Star (the real kind, for combat), and for the Soldier’s Medal for saving a man’s life. Part of his fitrep– not written by Marines– reads, “His leadership, decision-making, and recommedations to […]

4th ANGLICO Marines Loose in the UK

Great press for my fellow West Palm Beach “ANGLICANs”: The 26-member team taking part in Joint Warrior consisted of Navy and Marine Corps officers, as well as enlisted forward observers and field radio operators. During the exercise, the team trained with Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 24 staff on board the guided missile destroyer USS Cole (DDG 67) and the guided-missile frigate USS John L. Hall (FFG 32). The ANGLICO Leathernecks also conducted ground training at Cape Wrath, Scotland. “For the exercise, we [worked] as a simulated special operations forces unit that goes ashore working with non-amphibious ships such as destroyers and […]

RIP: Sgt Jeremiah McGraw, USMCR

With great regret and sadness I must report the death of one of my fellow 4th ANGLICO Marines, in an accident during jump operations. He will be missed, but never forgotten. Godspeed to you, Marine.

Gold Wings

I achieved gold wing status saturday night, after a combat equipment jump out of a USAF C-130 (and two more jumps the day before out of a Florida National Guard CH-47). Nearly ended up in a canal, but all ended well. Thanks to the pilots and crew of the 1st/111th Aviation, and to that C-130 out of Dyess. (Note to USAF pilots– next time, please try not to bank hard left after the 30-second warning with jumpers on the ramp…)

Drill Weekend Jump

Just got the pics from last weekend’s jump action. We did two days of jumps to keep our jumpmasters current, and to take another chunk out of the ongoing SF-10 transition. The Marines of VMGR-452 provided the plane.