Written by Allen West on June 29, 2016
Way back in 1999 to 2002, I had the distinct honor and privilege to serve a joint exchange assignment with the II Marine Expeditionary Force at Camp Lejeune North Carolina. It was there I earned my Navy/Marine Corps Gold Parachutist Insignia, which I wear proudly. I made lasting lifelong friends but more importantly, I was treated as one of their own. It was there I learned about Marine Air Ground Task Force operations, truly a joint education. My first Marine Corps birthday ball is something I’ll never forget, especially my wife Angela ogling over the Marine Corps officer dress mess uniform.
My older brother was a Marine infantryman at Khe Sanh, and wounded there. My mom, Snooks West, was a civilian employee with the 6th Marine Corps District Headquarters in Atlanta. So there has always been a part of me that was a part of the United States Marine Corps. And that’s why it pains me to see our beloved Marine Corps being decimated under the vision of one Barack Obama. At a time when our enemies are gathering strength, being emboldened, and expanding their stranglehold, we are reducing the capability and capacity of the Few, the Proud. Instead, this is what the Obama administration finds a necessary endeavor.
As reported by the Marine Corps Times, “Thousands of Marines serving throughout the infantry and in other key positions are about to get new gender-neutral job titles, but the service’s top leaders are pushing to leave the word “man” in some of its most iconic occupations.
In all, the Marine Corps plans to rename 19 of its military occupational specialties, or MOSs, as the result of a months-long review mandated by Navy Secretary Ray Mabus. A service-wide message announcing the changes are expected to be published within the next few days.
The terms “rifleman” and “mortarman,” are among those that remain untouched, according to a list — obtained by Marine Corps Times on Monday — of 33 MOSs that were reviewed. And that was by careful design, said a Marine official who spoke on the condition of anonymity. “Names that were not changed, like rifleman, are steeped in Marine Corps history and ethos,” the official said. “Things that were changed needed to be updated to align with other MOS names.” In most cases, the word “man” will be replaced by Marine.
You must realize we have the smallest Marine Corps since World War I and the focus of SecNav Mabus and Obama is name-changing. No wonder the enemy is emboldened and carrying out terrorist attacks darn near weekly now.
We reported here recently the status of aircraft mishaps and incidents — quite a few have affected Marine Corps aviation units, rotary and fixed wing. Marine F/A-18 fighter squadrons are deploying at less than 50 percent combat capability. Yet, what is most important? Changing names in the venerable Corps.
Earlier this week we reported that SecDef Ash Carter is ready to formally announce his plan to remove the ban on gender dysphoria — you know, transgenders in the U.S. military. What message does all this send to our enemies, especially an ideological one such as the Islamic State?
It’s beyond belief that weeks after the Orlando terror attack, this is the priority for our military? Ladies and gents, we MUST rid ourselves of these progressive socialists before we have a completely demoralized military. This insidious venture into fundamentally transforming our military via social egalitarianism and ideological agenda will put this nation in a very vulnerable position.
Imagine, another four, or potentially eight years of this under a Hillary Clinton, who will abandon our warriors and lie to the families. We will not have the ability to defend our way of life. And what do we tell the moms, dads, husbands, wives, and children — the loved ones of our uniformed men and women standing upon freedom’s rampart? Why should they believe these people will have the back of their loved ones? How do we look at the parents of the young man or woman who wants to serve, and not have that sinking feeling that no matter how noble, they’ll serve under people with no sense of honor and integrity?
I know folks talk about this election coming down to the Supreme Court. For me, this election comes down to having a trustworthy commander in chief who will restore the pride of our military — not pride based on who you’re sleeping with, but a true American pride that comes from serving our nation.
These are such critical times, yet we have silly people in positions of leadership. Think about what you want a future U.S. Marine Corps to look like. Yes, there’s a high degree of pride to claim the title of Marine, and they don’t need Ray Mabus or Barack Obama — neither worthy to polish the dirty boots of a Marine — to decide how to refer to the Few, the Proud…our United States Marine Corps.