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saw the terrorists trying to seize control of the villages.
Marine CAP Units Offered Friendship And Security To The People
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TERRORISTS TURN 2,000 HOME CAP VILLAGE INTO AN ASHTRAY
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UNDER CONSTRUCTION
 
 
Scott Gartner is a professor of political science at the University of California, Davis, where he teaches U.S. national security.  He is author of the book "Strategic Assessment in War."

-----Original Message-----
From: Skuta, Philip C LtCol JCS J5/SPD
To:      
tduffie@cinci.rr.com       WEB MASTER  *  USMC  CAP  Web  Site  Home  Page
 

USMC CAP Web Site Home Page      http://www.capmarine.com/
Subject:  The Changing Face of U.S. Forces


Tim,

I don't know if you are aware of some of the very positive articles starting to emerge about CAPs in Iraq. I coped one such piece below.

It seems like light years ago when I wrote you about our CAP efforts within the 1st Marine Division in 2004.  This article sheds light on how much more of the US forces country-wide in Iraq have adjusted tactics towards CAP-like actvities.  I am still dizzy at how long it has collectively taken senior US commanders to realize the effects which can be achieved through the CAP approach.

We will never forget the hard lessons of war your generation passed to those of us that now defend freedom.  The CAP is alive, US forces are better off because of your efforts nearly two generations ago, and (from the Iraqis I still talk with) the conditions in Iraq are much better today than several years ago.

You, sir, have much to be proud of.

Semper fidelis,
Phil Skuta

LtCol P.C. Skuta, USMC
Joint Staff/J5/War on Terrorism



The changing face of U.S. forces

Taking their cue from the Marines in Vietnam, troops use a new strategy to fight Iraq insurgency

BY SCOTT GARTNER | Scott Gartner is a professor of political science at the University of California, Davis, where he teaches U.S. national security. He is author of the book "Strategic Assessment in War."

November 28, 2007

Although 2007 represents the most deadly year so far for the United States in Iraq, recent military statistics and news reports suggest a decrease in the violence and lethality of the conflict.

Car bombs, suicide bombings and body counts are said to have dropped considerably, while in much of Baghdad residents are moving freely for the first time in two years.

These improvements reflect a variety of factors, such as reduced support for insurgents from Syria and Iran and decreased fighting by a number of Sunni and Shia militias. Another reason, largely unnoticed, is changes in strategy and operations by the U.S. military that reflect learning from previous Iraq and Vietnam failures.

American forces began the occupation focusing on big units in huge bases conducting large-scale operations. The problem was that the enemy rapidly adapted with smaller, cell-size units that the large U.S. units couldn't match in speed and flexibility. As happened during the Vietnam War, the military reacted too slowly to the enemy's shifts, with similarly disastrous results.

But in recent months, U.S. commanders have fundamentally changed the way they employ forces, with innovative and well-thought-out counterinsurgency ideas. U.S. troops are broken into smaller units in more dispersed bases where troops conduct themselves more like police than soldiers.

With a walking-the-beat model, U.S. troops are closer to the Iraqi people, more likely to gather critical intelligence and can be seen by the Iraqi people as a force for stability. The new policy of polite military operations (which might seem like an oxymoron) offers an effective way of gaining Iraqis' trust and support.

This approach draws from a strategy used by the Marines in Vietnam, where it was called a Combined Action Platoon. Small numbers of Marines lived in villages throughout the countryside, working with residents in a combination of social-service and defense-consultant roles, to improve security and living conditions. Were the village attacked, the Marine team could hold off the attackers while calling for air, artillery and troop support. The goal was to deter attacks by making them more costly.

In Vietnam, the program was terminated because by the Army's measure of success - the enemy body count - it was a failure. Since the goal was to deter enemy attacks, of course villages in the program experienced significantly less combat, leading to low numbers of enemy dead.

The Marines chose to evaluate success instead through indicators such as rice growing. Planting rice seed required a significant investment of a village's capital. Villagers would make this investment only if they thought they would be around to harvest their investment. Rice planted thus represented South Vietnamese perceptions of future stability.

The end of the program led to a deep rift between the Marine Corps and Army, which further impeded U.S. efforts in Vietnam. For Iraq, by contrast, the new operational doctrine was jointly developed by the two services and is called "The U.S. Army/Marine Corps Counterinsurgency Field Manual" (published in paperback). It has been touted in appearances (on of all places, the "Daily Show") by Army Lt. Col. John Nagl, who wrote an influential book about Vietnam and Malaya (now part of Malaysia).

In judging the success of the operation, we can take two important lessons from the Vietnam experience. First, unlike larger, mobile units that can project power over a wide area, Combined Action Platoons can protect only those neighborhoods and villagers where they are deployed.

Given the small number of U.S. troops (less than a third of what past counterinsurgency successes suggest are necessary), the United States must also get Iraqi and allied military units to buy into the doctrine.

Second, in looking at the extensive array of statistics and benchmarks, one wonders what is the "rice-growing" indicator of performance for Iraq? U.S. troops should be measuring success through local perceptions of rising safety and stability. For example, children are sent to school only when their parents think conditions are sufficiently safe. Thus, school attendance would be a good measure of perceptions of security by the Iraqi public and effectiveness of the new doctrine.

Strategic assessment in war - the ability to learn, admit failure and adopt new approaches - is one of the most challenging and important tasks for any military. That the Army and Marine Corps are working together to develop innovative operations is a hopeful sign about the U.S. military's prospects, even as it still remains unclear whether any gain in security in Iraq will foster the political and institutional development needed for a long-term favorable outcome.

Scott Gartner is a professor of political science at the University of California, Davis, where he teaches U.S. national security. He is author of the book "Strategic Assessment in War."

 
 
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USS ARIZONA Marine Remembrance At Pearl Harbor
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UPDATE:    We saved the Marine Corps Rememberance Memorial in Pearl Harbor From The National Park Service.

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From:    Colonel John R. Bates USMC (ret)     jrbatesusmc@aol.com
 
UPDATE:   A couple of years ago, I was the Operations Officer for the Pearl Harbor Visitor Center, on the waterfront between the USS ARIZONA and the USS BOWFIN. The Commandant of the Marine Corps was the featured speaker at the dedication of the USS ARIZONA Marine Remembrance, 10 November 2006. The National Park Service, which administers the USS ARIZONA Memorial is renovating all of Halawa Landing, the site of the Marine Remembrance. The Regional Director of the Natl Park Service Western Region, Jon Jarvis, stated on the local TV news that the Marine Remembrance would be removed. I challenged him on that statement and convinced him that would not happen without a fight. I passed the word to (disabled CAP Marine vet) Jack Cunningham (Americans Working Together), who in turn asked his readership to email Jarvis that the entire USMC would make every effort to have him relieved of his duties if he moved that monument. I was copied on many of the emails to him from Marines, their friends and their families that it nearly fried my computer. And...it worked. In order to save his job, Jarvis backed down. The Remembrance now belongs to the USMC and has its' rightful place in direct view of the USS ARIZONA.

 

COLONEL JOHN BATES

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Now, Jack Cunningham can use our help himself, as he fights for his due process against a corrupt law firm and state officials who are protecting them.
 
 

A state Supreme Court attorney ethics Vice-Chairman Robert Correale misuses his high level government and court office to Cover-Up and block ethics violations and legal malpractice charges against his own law firm, Maynard & Truland.  After eight years, the Cover-Up leads all the way up to the Governor's Office, the Attorney General's Office, the state's Supreme Court and Superior Court.

Disabled Vietnam vet, Jack Cunningham's ethic complaints start with Robert Correale's and his law firm's gross negligence, over-charging per hour, false billing, lack of communications, coming to court unprepared and open perjury to the New Jersey Supreme Court and Superior Court systems.   (Evidence are Maynard & Truland's own contact, invoices, court-filed letters, court-filed documents and court-filed sworn statements, NJ Supreme Court attorney certifications, etc.)
 
Thanks to some dedicated, honest State Legislators, Jack Cunningham is no longer in this battle alone.   Please read the below letters. 
 
It's going to another level.  It's proof that in America, the little guy can win, if he or she does not give up...

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"The CAP is alive, US forces are better off because of your efforts nearly two generations ago, and (from the Iraqis I still talk with) the conditions in Iraq are much better today than several years ago."
       LtCol P.C. Skuta, USMC    
Read what CAP is doing today: http://www.capveterans.com/cap_marines
 
 
 
 
 
Email:   Webmaster  ProudCAPMarine@eathlink.net 
 
 
Please press the next three pictures for larger copies.
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Three tour veteran of the Vietnam War, Sardo Sanchez (center stage) is welcomed to Crossville, Tennessee's Welcome Home to Vietnam Veterans.  Sardo Sanchez was the representative of New Mexico's Governor Bill Richardson and announced to the crowd that the State of New Mexico has also named March 29 Vietnam Veterans Day.
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Left to right:   Sardo Sanchez, webmaster Jack Cunningham, Bob Tuke
All three Vietnam Veterans served in the Marine Corps Combined Action Program (CAP).  Sardo served three tours in Vietnam and two tours in CAP.
 
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Right, former Marine CAP Veteran (CAP 3-4-4), Johnny J. Howard of Tennessee (28 miles from Crossville).  The night before this picture was taken, Johnny Howard was notified that his grandson was wounded in Iraq and was coming home.
 
 
Please press the next link to read more details about Crossville, Tennessee's Welcome Home / Vietnam Veterans Day.    http://www.ccvietnamvets.com
 
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