An Update about a Terrible Marine

Earlier today I wrote about the Marines who were ordered to get rid of their weapons in order to meet with the SecDef.  I just picked up the following update from

Major General Mark Gurganus later said he gave the order because Afghan troops attending the talk were unarmed and he wanted the policy to be consistent for all.

A commenter on this blog post earlier today told me the same thing.

Having a General give this order is even worse than a DA Civilian doing it. This General should be relieved immediately. He should also renounce himself being a Marine and be ashamed of himself.

What does this say of him as a leader if he can’t trust his own Marines? What does it say of him as a leader if he doesn’t trust the men he leads? I am disgusted a someone who called themselves a General and a Marine would give such an order.

Happy Birthday Marine Corps

On this day in 1775 in Philadelphia at a place called Tun Tavern, the Marine Corps was born. Samuel Nichols was the founder at the time. 

I have never been a Marine but I have stayed in a few Holiday Inn Express hotels and I have many Marine friends besides working with them a lot during my military career. 

So to the Corps I say Semper Fi and Happy Birthday!


Marine C-130s are now Missile equipped 1

This is a great video produced by the NRA of Oliver North showing the new Missile equipped C-130 the Marines have. It is sort of like a AC-130 Spectre Gunship that the Air Force flies, but not as heavily armed.


If the above video does not work, you can click on to watch it on the NRA site.

A sad day for MARSOC and the Corps 1

My heart goes out to the families, friends and comrades of these brave young Marines. It is one thing to lose your life in combat to the enemy. It is a shame to lose it in an accident.

The Department of Defense announced Wednesday the deaths in Afghanistan of three Camp Lejeune-based Marines assigned to Marine Corps Forces Special Operations Command.

Staff Sgt. Patrick R. Dolphin, 29, of Moscow, Pa.; Sgt. Dennis E. Kancler, 26, of Brecksville, Ohio; and Sgt. Christopher M. Wrinkle, 29, of Dallastown, Pa., died July 31 in Herat Province, Afghanistan, according to DoD reports.

Dolphin, Kancler and Wrinkle were assigned to 2nd Marine Special Operations Battalion, Marine Special Operations Regiment, U.S. Marine Corps Forces Special Operations Command.

According to MarSOC officials, the deaths were a result of a non-combat related incident that also left one Marine and one Soldier injured. Marine Corps Times reported that the three Marines and a military dog were killed when their living quarters caught fire in Afghanistan.
The incident is under investigation, officials said, and more information will not be released until the investigation is complete. The names of the injured troops have been withheld.

Notes from the front in Afghanistan

My good friend Andrew Lubin is back in Afghanistan on what is like his 6th or 7th trip there. He is again writing up his blog posts for Leatherneck magazine called “Notes from the Field”. 

This is classic COIN, taken from the “Small Wars Manual,” as the Marines interact with the Afghan farmers, elders and bazaaris (merchants), including teaching the children basic English while learning equally basic Pashtu. From the amount of mutual waving and smiling, as well as the locals tipping off the Afghan Army-Afghan Police to a 350- pound cache of IED-making materials two weeks ago, it is clearly an effective strategy. There has not been a firefight or IED incident in some two months. When the prior Marine unit here opened Patrol Base Achmed, knowing the Marine reputation for fighting, the Taliban quickly left the area, and only sporadically return (see my May 25, Operation Arctic Elephant report).

Head over to and give Andy’s latest dispatch a read. If you want to know what is happening in Afghanistan what better place to read than a guy who is there writing notes from the field. 


Extreme Makeover for a Marine

If you are not a normal reader of the milblog then let me make you aware of a great series of blogs that my good friend, Marcus has started and will br writing and posting there.

In addition to being a milblogger, producer of You Served Radio and a Marine, Marcus is a Marine in SC. A fellow Marine of his has been selected to be the recipient of the latest Extreme Makeover Home Edition renovation. Marcus has put up several posts already here, here and here.

After you read those, then stay tuned to as he works to put up at least one a day if not more, to include audio and video interviews with those involved with the project.

3/5 Marines on Mission


B-roll of Marines of Kilo Company, 3rd Battalion, 5th Marines have been operating in the upper Sangin valley for three months. When they arrived, Marines say they couldn’t move beyond several hundred feet from their post before being engaged by Taliban fighters. Over their time here, they have expanded that security zone, but they still meet the Taliban almost daily in fire fights. In this video, Marines are seen patrolling, scouting, searching for IEDs, shooting at Taliban fighters and searching compounds. 3rd Battalion, 5th Marines is based out of Camp Pendleton, Calif. Produced by Sgt. Dean Davis