Why does the Marine Corps have its own "Air Force"?

Discussion in 'Military Aviation in General' started by SoICanBeFree, Oct 19, 2005.

  1. SoICanBeFree

    SoICanBeFree Stupid Haole

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    Why does the Marine Corps have its own "Air Force"?

    This question has been asked of me. I've lurked and searched and have never really been given a satisfactory answer as to why the Marine Corps has its own air component. Can a Marine NA or SNA speak up and help me out? Thank you.

    s/f
     
  2. skidkid

    skidkid CAS Czar None

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    The Marine Corps is by nature an independant amphibious force. Yes we are inseperably linked to the Navy but as we flow ashore there is a need for air assets to support the Marine on the ground, getting him there and supporting him. Being amphibious means being light which means not a lot of artillery among other things. The Air Combat Element provides the firepower we lose by being light. The need for this firepower cannot be anyhting but fully integrated within our force. Time and time again there is the argument about Marine air belonging to the JFAC (joint forces air component commander) or belonging to the Marine Corps-so far we have won this argument mostly and been pretty succesful on the battlefield.

    The bottomline is that America really doesnt need a Marine Corps, America wants a Marine Corps and in order for that Corps to be succesful we need our own Air Combat Element.


    Ohhh and because we kick ass and are cooler than everyone else (smiles-simulated)
     
  3. TheBubba

    TheBubba 1820 NOOB None

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    Not a Marine, but agreed... y'all do kick some serious @$$...
     
  4. MarineAir

    MarineAir Future Naval Aviator

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    skidkid definitely hit the nail on the head. Couldn't agree more.
     
  5. BOMBSonHAWKEYES

    BOMBSonHAWKEYES Registered User None

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    To kill people
     
    pourts likes this.
  6. Brett327

    Brett327 Magnum! None

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    At least for fixed wing, that's an excellent question.:D

    Brett
     
  7. squeeze

    squeeze Exchange Pilot Extraordinaire None

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    ...as well as the fact the Marine Corps seems to be the only people able to repeatedly conduct CAS w/o killing the Marines they're protecting. USAF, I'm looking in your direction.
     
  8. phrogpilot73

    phrogpilot73 Well-Known Member

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    I agree wholeheartedly with what SkidKid said, and I'm going to expand a bit (hopefully to include why we have fixed wing). It gets down to the very basics of why the Marine Corps exists. The USMC is designed as an expeditionary force, able to forward deploy from US Navy Shipping, and sustain themselves for a certain period of time. For a MEU, if I remember correctly, they should be able to sustain themselves for 15 days. The intent is that the MAGTF goes ashore, and is able to hold on to key terrain/objectives until larger, more robust forces can relieve them. As the logisitically huge, and less mobile (but more robust) forces are moving into theater, the Marine Corps must be able to complete EVERY mission assigned to them. Hence the reason they have fixed wing (for CAS and Assault Support). Once the larger force takes over, we (in theory) pack up our toys and head out. Without our own fixed wing component, we SEVERLY limit our capabilities for CAS, ISR, etc... While I feel more comfortable with skids escorting me, I still want to see that litening pod footage, etc... Even if I do have to put up with those guys whining in the wardroom!
     
  9. dvl_dog_2531_90

    dvl_dog_2531_90 Registered User

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    So that the grunts can locate, close with, and destroy the enemy.

    Having dedicated air support makes that a lot easier.
     
  10. phrogpilot73

    phrogpilot73 Well-Known Member

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    Well and simply put. We're merely enhance the maneuver element of fire and maneuver.
     
  11. Whalebite

    Whalebite Registered User

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    Because sometimes it absolutely positively has to be destroyed overnight!
     
  12. Steve Wilkins

    Steve Wilkins Teaching pigs to dance, one pig at a time. None

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    This is like asking a baker if people should eat pies and cake.
     
  13. theduke

    theduke Registered User

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    lots of more subtle reasons, but the big one is our expeditionary, quick-react role.
     
  14. SoICanBeFree

    SoICanBeFree Stupid Haole

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    I received some good answers, thank you Skidkid and Phrogpilot ... you've given me more than a basic satisfactory answer to give people who are like your becoming a pilot? With WHO, the Marine Corps?

    So now after saying damn straight... I can explain why the Marines have their own air assets.

    s/f
     
  15. jarhead

    jarhead hinge None

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    i think the more appropriate question is why does the Navy have an "air force"? i mean, the Navy does such a good job at taxiing our ground Marines and some of our harriers & helos around the world, why not just get rid of the Navy "air force" as a whole and put all Marine air on amphibs & carriers instead? ... that would allow the Navy to concentrate on what it does best, drive boats, and would better facilitate what the Marine Corps does best, win wars!

    :D fox-3
     

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