Tuesday, October 30, 2007

U.S. Marines new training program is "Developing a "Hunter's Mentality"

“I MEF commanders believe that if we create the mentality in our Marines of hunters, and they take on some of those skills, then we’ll be able to increase our combat effectiveness,” General James T. Conway USMC, 34th Commandant of the Marine Corps
My goodness.."Every Marine a Hunter" this is the crap that our Military is teaching our children. A "hunter"? How about a "defender". You're not going to believe this one.

The United States Marine Corps has started a new training program named, "Combat Hunter". Combat Hunter aims to merge the skills of "big game hunters" of Africa with the 'new' urban combat soldier in the "war of terror".

According to a brilliant article by Nick Turse, in the Asia Times,
At a recent conference on urban warfare in Washington, DC, James Lasswell, retired USMC colonel,Head the Office of Science and Technology at the Marine Corps War fighting Laboratory,( neo conservative, PNAC participant)

He noted that, as part of an instruction course named "Combat Hunter", the marines have brought in "big-game hunters" to school their snipers in the better use of "optics". According to a September article by Grace Jean in National Defense Magazine, "[T]he lab conducted a war game with marines, African game hunters and inner city police officers to search for ways to improve training." The program included a 15-minute CD titled "Every Marine a Hunter." Asian Times
"We think urban is the future. Everything worth fighting for is in the urban environment." said James Lasswell, Tom Dispatch
Wild. Here comes the kicker. Read this dumba$$ statement,
"The corps hopes to tap into skills certain marines may already have learned growing up in rural hunting areas and in urban areas, such as inner cities, said Colonel Clarke Lethin, I MEF's chief of staff." Read the full article
Quite an interesting statement. Put the obvious rural aspect aside, "inner cities"? Who was this comment aimed towards. Hmmm, the skills of our new Marine Corps apparently have skills based on "growing up" "hunting"in inner cities, too. I'm not a hunter, but I imagine if I ever went..it wouldn't be in the inner city.

Here in another article, General James T. Conway USMC, 34th Commandant of the Marine Corps, offers US a little more insight into our "new" hunter's mentality.
The skillful hunter of animals (dehumanizing the enemy) must learn how to successfully track down and engage it in its natural habitat…no matter what those surroundings may be. The natural habitat of mankind is in urban dwellings. This habitat has it own rules and its own camouflage. The “combat hunter” training will search for methods to help Marines find,and then hit, fleeing and moving targets that are sometimes among crowds of people", General James T. Conway USMC, 34th Commandant of the Marine Corps
Keeping with this "dehumanizing" mentality,
Troops on the ground say that they have to fire multiple shots into the enemy before they go down, and surprisingly enough, some still get up and keep coming.The suggestion has been made that perhaps a new and heavier round should be introduced to match the new Marine “hunter” mentality.
Not according to Gen. Conway. It's misdirected training.
“Put a round in the right place, and you’ll stop the bad guy, no matter the size of the bullet and how fast he’s moving,”.
He does have a point. His point being...
The problem is we’re not very good at hitting moving targets. A hunter can hit a moving target with a great deal of frequency.Maybe we should start with shotguns and build a level of confidence in hitting a moving target via skeet or trap, and we go from there to rifle shots.”
Explaining the benefits of skeet shooting, Scott Reed, Fmr Marine Corps Rifle Range Coach, current AM of McIntyre Skeet Range & Paint Ball located at Camp Lejeune, N.C. explained,
Most of the principles of marksmanship that we learn in the Marine Corps do not apply in shooting moving targets.
“The emphasis here is on the target, not the front sight post as in traditional marksmanship at the rifle range. Trigger control is not a major issue here either. Most Marines forget that the weapon is moving a great deal when they take the shot; this is not the case in traditional marksmanship. There’s no waiting and breathing with proper sight alignment and sight picture here. With skeet, as in combat shooting,you only have about 2 seconds to take a well aimed shot. The only difference is skeet targets don’t shoot back.”
“The targets are moving at speeds of 45 to 47 Mph which is pretty fast. If you think about combat circumstances, a human being cannot run that fast so skeet shooting will get Marines conditioned for the worst case scenarios of moving targets”
The shift from rifleman to hunter will have to take place mentally before it happens physically. The hunter knows that he/she is the hunter because they are confident in their superior skills. Through constant skeet shooting, the confidence that will be instilled in the individual Marine’s combat marksmanship abilities will begin to grow. As an outcome, the Marine will begin to feel like the hunter and therefore perform like one. Sgt. Steven King
Skeet shooting and "big game hunters"...sounds like Dick Cheney's type of "hunting trip". Throw in a few alcoholic drinks and an old lawyer 'friend' and Cheney will be planning his next vacation to Camp Lejeune.

related 'target practice' posts:
"Shotgun Cheney" is going Hunting.."friends and Lawyers beware"
The Statements Don Rumsfeld did not say on Camera
4th Branch addresses Dennis Kucinich and Impeachment

Same Players. Different Scandal.


Fred said...

I found your post while searching for information on possibly attending this school.

The inner city comment refers to the portion of the class which pertains to discerning a person's threat level from their body language and such.

I do not understand your aversion to this "hunter mentality". In combat you do not want to be a defender, passively waiting to be attacked. You need to be active and alert, if only to deter potential attacks and minimize casualties on both "teams", as it were. Having an aggressive mindset does not turn you into a crusading pre-emptive strike force. We can leave that to the head honchos.

lyle said...

Well said Fred. I also was searching for more information on the topic, as I am considering requesting orders to become an instructor, when I stumbled upon this delusional commentary on the new program. Critics help to keep some of the idiotic ideas our government frequently comes up with from becoming a reality, but just as many good ideas are downplayed by people who don't have the slightest clue about the topic they want to inject their own agenda into. This is especially the case with people who have never served in the military or worked with military personnel (such as contractors); they have a tendency to spread half-truths as gospel because they don't know what they are talking about and the result is obvious. Until some of the people that criticize this program find them patrolling with only their natural instincts and fellow squad members to rely on for survival, their opinion's on the combat mindset are laughable. The success of a tactical program consists of too many factors to accurately predict whether or not it will accomplish the intended task. Time has shown many to have been a virtual joke, while with others it is almost hard to imagine not having been taught at one time; whether or not this program will be an immediate success or not, I applaud the Corps. for finally officially exploring this topic, as the skills being studied are those that some of the most experienced and effective troops on the ground have known to be essential for as long as our military has fought, they just used to have to be learned on an individual basis.

Anonymous said...

this author sure sounds like an idiot to me.

sure sounds like you don't want our soldiers to learn new skills to increase their survival on the battlefield.

maybe you'd just teach them to wave a white flag?

Anonymous said...

Disregard the author, who is obviously a hand-wringing liberal weenie who hates the men he relies on for his protection.

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Lcpl. Lopez, 4th Recon, USMC said...

im Lcpl. Lopez, 4th Recon H$S RTO.. i have had the privilege of attending this school and completing the program. it will be this kind of mindset and training that will lead the our marines to better awareness and judgment on the battlefield. this program encompasses the idea of thinking "left of bang," which is essentially being able to predetermine and read situations and human behavior and prevent rather than react.

for any comments you can reach me at cvlopezjr@gmail.com