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Leadership – Identify significant events in Marine Corps history

Identify significant events in Marine Corps history

Training Support Package (TSP) for the Battle Skills Test (BST)

 

TASK: Identify significant events in Marine Corps history

CONDITION: Without the aid of references. STANDARD: Without omitting key components.

ESTIMATED TIME TO TRAIN: 20 minuets

ESTIMATED TIME TO EVALUATE: 5 minutes per marine

PERFORMANCE STEPS: 

  1. State significant places from in Marine Corps’ history
  2. Identify significant individual Marines in Marine Corps’ history
  3. Describe significant battles from Marine Corps’ history.
  4. Identify the “Pathbreakers” who have contributed to the Marine Corps’

REFERENCES: MILLET, R. ALLAN – SEMPER FIDELIS, The History of the United States Marine Corps

SUPPORT REQUIREMENTS: NA

INSTRUCTOR NOTE. 

PERFORMANCE STEP 1: State significant places from in Marine Corps’ history

As we look back into the history of the Marine Corps, we see that there are many places Marines have gone to fight.  Like the Hymn says, “we have fought in every clime and place, where we could take a gun.”  Following are some of the significant places related to historical events of the Marine Corps.

Tun TavernThe Marine Corps was created on 10 November 1775 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania at Tun Tavern by a resolution of the Continental Congress, which “raised two battalions of Marines.”

Tripoli.  In 1805 Marines stormed the Barbary pirates’ stronghold at Derna on the “Shores of Tripoli.” Marines raised the “Stars and Stripes” for the first time in the Eastern Hemisphere.

Belleau Wood.  Marines fought one of their greatest battles in history at Belleau Wood, France during World War I.  Marines helped crush a German offensive threating Paris at Belleau Wood.  In reference to the Marine’s ferocious fighting ability, German troops called their new enemy “Teufelhunden” which translates to “Devildogs,” a nickname in which Marines share pride in to this day.

The Chosin Reservoir.  After pushing far into North Korea during November of 1950, Marines were cut off after the Chinese Communist Forces entered the war.  Despite facing a 10-division force sent to annihilate them, Marines smashed seven enemy divisions in their march from the Chosin Reservoir. The major significance of this retrograde movement was that Marines brought out all operable equipment, properly evacuated their wounded and dead, and maintained tactical integrity.

Kuwait.  Following the invasion of Kuwait by Iraqi forces, Operation Desert Shield was launched. This joint military operation was designed to halt the advance of Iraqi forces and to position multinational forces assembled for possible offensive operations to expel the invading force. This operation validated the Marine Corps Maritime Prepositioning Force (MPF) concept and enacted the plan of tailoring units to accomplish a mission as part of a Marine Air Ground Task Force (MAGTF).

PERFORMANCE STEP 2: Identify significant individual Marines in Marine Corps’ history

Presley O’Bannon.  First Lieutenant O’Bannon is remembered for heroism in the battle for the harbor fortress of Derna (Tripoli) in the Mediterranean.  O’Bannon’s Marines were the first U.S. forces to hoist the flag over territory in the Old World.  The “Mameluke” sword, carried by Marine officers today, was presented to O’Bannon in 1805.

Archibald HendersonBrevet Brigadier General Archibald Henderson became Commandant in 1820 and held his command for 39 years until his death in 1859.  The “Grand Old Man of the Marine Corps” introduced higher standards of personal appearance, training, discipline, and strived to have the Marine Corps known as a professional military force, capable of more than just sea and guard duties.

Daniel Daly. Sergeant Major Daly is recognized for earning two Medals of Honor: his first during the Chinese Boxer Rebellion and the second during the First Caco War in Haiti.  When his unit had been pinned down and their attack was stalled during the Battle of Belleau Wood, then Gunnery Sergeant Daly yelled to his men, “Come on, you sons of a bitches, do you want to live forever?”

Smedley D. Butler. Major Butler is recognized for earning two Medals of Honor: his first in action at Veracruz and second in the First Caco War in Haiti.

John A. LejeuneMajor General Lejeune served as 13th Commandant of the Marine Corps, 1920-1929. LeJeune was the first Marine officer ever to command an Army Division in combat in France during World War I (1918).  2nd Marine Division is now stationed aboard Camp Lejeune, N.C.

Lewis B. “Chesty” PullerLieutenant General Puller served with distinction in actions spanning from Nicaragua through the Korean War.  The Marine Corps’ mascot, an English bulldog, is named in honor of this brave and tough Marine Corps officer.  Puller is also the most highly decorated Marine in history with five Navy Crosses.

Ira Hayes.  Corporal Ira Hayes, a Pima Indian, was one of the Marines immortalized photograph taken of the second flag-raising on Mount Suribachi during the battle of Iwo Jima.

Opha Mae JohnsonPrivate Johnson became the Marine Corps’ first enlisted woman on 13 August 1918.  Her enlistment was a reflection of the dramatic changes in the status of women brought about by the entry of the United States into World War I.

Jason Dunham.  Is the first Marine to be awarded the Medal of Honor (posthumously) since the Vietnam War.  Cpl Dunham fought with 3rd Bn, 7th Marines while operating in the town of Karabilah, Iraq.  Cpl Dunham’s squad approached an SUV and found rifles and RPGs.  When the driver attempted to run away, Cpl Dunham fought him to the ground.  The driver dropped an armed grenade at his feet and Cpl Dunham covered it with his helmet and body.  No other members of his squad were seriously injured.

PERFORMANCE STEP 3:  Describe significant battles from Marine Corps’ history.

Battle of Chapultepec.  In 1847 during the Mexican War, Marines occupied the “Halls of Montezuma” during the Battle of Chapultepec in Mexico City.  The royal palace fell to invading Marines, who were among the first United States troops to enter the capital.  Today Marine NCOs wear a red stripe on their dress blue trousers known as the “blood stripe” earned by their leadership and bravery during the battle.

The Battle of Guadalcanal – On 7 August 1942, the 1st Marine Division landed on the beaches of Guadalcanal in the Solomon Islands launching the first United States land offensive of World War II. This battle marked the first combat test of the new amphibious doctrine, and also provided a crucial turning point of the war in the Pacific providing a base to launch further invasions of Japanese-held islands.

The Battle of Tarawa – The Gilbert Islands were the first in the line of advance for the offensive in the Central Pacific.  The prime objective was the Tarawa Atoll and Betio Island, which had been fortified to the point that the Japanese commander proclaimed it would take a million Americans 100 years to conquer.  On 20 November 1943, Marines landed and secured the island within 76 hours, but paid a heavy price.  Because of an extended reef, landing crafts could not reach land and Marines had to be offloaded hundreds of yards from the beaches leading to heavy losses.

The Battle of Iwo Jima – On 19 February 1945, Marines landed on Iwo Jima in what was the largest and bloodiest all-Marine battle in Marine Corps history.  The Marine Corps suffered over 23,300 casualties.  Admiral Chester W. Nimitz said, “Among the Americans who served on Iwo Jima Island, uncommon valor was a common virtue.”  Joe Rosenthal’s historic photograph depicts five Marines and Corpsman raising the flag of the United States atop Mount Suribachi.

The Battle of Okinawa – In April of 1945, Marines and Soldiers landed and secured the island of Okinawa.  This marked the last large action of World War II.  Due to the death of the Army commander, Major General Roy S. Geiger assumed command of the 10th Army.

Second Battle of Fallujah – An insurgency took a firm hold of the city and began to prepare for a head-to-head fight with Coalition Forces.  Operation Phantom Fury began on 8 November 2004. The fighting was the hardest since the Vietnam War.  Intense house-to-house fighting went on for over a month and a half.  On 23 December 2004 the last of the fighters were killed in the city.  Comparisons to the battle of Hue City and the Pacific Island Hopping Campaign have been drawn to the fighting in Fallujah.

The Battle of Marjah – In February 2010, Marines from 6th Marine Regiment and other Coalition Forces moved to occupy the District of Marjah.  This was believed to be the last Taliban stronghold in the Helmand Province.  Because American contractors built the district in the 1950s, BGen Nicholson, commander of the 2nd MEB, said, “The United States built Marjah, and we’re going to come back and fix it.” 

PERFORMANCE STEP 4:  Identify the “Pathbreakers” who have contributed to the Marine Corps’ legacy.

Montford Point Marines. From 1942 to 1949, after President Roosevelt issued Executive Order No. 8802 establishing the fair employment practice that began to reduce discrimination in the Armed Forces, African Americans had the opportunity to join the Marine Corps.  African American Marines were initially segregated from normal recruit training sites and were sent to Montford Point (renamed Camp Johnson) which is adjacent to Camp Lejeune, N.C to conduct training.  Approximately 20,000 African American Marines were trained at Monford Point and went on to serve with honor and distinction.

Navajo Code Talkers.  Code Talkers were Navajo men who transmitted secret communications on the battlefields of WWII.  At a time when America’s best cryptographers were falling short, these modest Native Americans were able to fashion the one of the most ingenious and successful code in military history.  They drew upon their proud warrior tradition to brave the dense jungles of Guadalcanal and the exposed beachheads of Iwo Jima.  Serving with distinction in every major engagement of the Pacific theater from 1942-1945, their unbreakable code played a pivotal role in saving countless lives and hastening the war’s end.

Women Marines. In 1918, the Secretary of Navy allowed women to enroll for clerical duty in the Marine Corps.  Opha Mae Johnson is credited as the first woman Marine.  Johnson enrolled for service on 13 August 1918; during that year some 300 women first entered the Marine Corps to taking stateside clerical duties from battle-ready Marines who were needed overseas.  The Marine Corps Women’s Reserve was established in February 1943, and on 12 June 1948 Congress passed the Women’s

Armed Services Integration Act and made women a permanent part of the regular Marine Corps.

 

 

 

 

Identify significant events in Marine Corps history

Evaluation Checklist

 

EVALUATOR(S):

MARINE TRAINED:

DATE:

SUPPORT REQUIREMENTS: NA

EVALUATOR NOTE: Marines must answer or perform all the questions below without error in order to pass this event. The evaluator will guide the Marine being tested through the checklist by asking questions.

 

Performance Step Instructor Notes Pass or Remediate
1. State significant places from in Marine Corps’ history Marine should be able to state two significant places in Marine Corps’ history:

1.     Tun Tavern – Birthplace of the Marine Corps

2.     Tripoli – Marines stormed the Barbary pirates stronghold

3.     Belleau Wood – Marines fought one of their greatest battles and earned the nickname Devildog

4.     The Chosin Reservoir – Cut off by the Chinese the Marines conducted a daring retrograde in freezing temperatures

5.     Kuwait – The Marines liberated Kuwait from Iraqi forces during Operation Desert Storm.

 
2. Identify significant individual Marines in Marine Corps’ history Marine should state three significant Marines:

1.     Presley O’Bannon – Hero of the battle in Tripoli and was given the Mameluke sword, carried by Marine officers today.

2.     Archibald Henderson – The “Grand Old Man of the Marine Corps” was the Commandant for 39 years.

3.     Daniel Daly – Earned two Medals of Honor.

4.     Smedley Butler – Earned two Medals of Honor.

5.     John A. Lejeune – 13th Commandant of the Marine Corps.

6.     Lewis B. “Chesty” Puller – Most highly decorated Marine with five Navy Crosses

7.     Ira Hayes – Pima Indian who raised the flag on Mount Suribachi.

8.     Opha Mae Johnson – First enlisted woman in the Marine Corps

9.     Jason Dunham – First Marine to earn the Medal of Honor since the Vietnam War.

 
3. Describe significant battles from Marine Corps’ history.

 

Marine should describe three significant battles:

1.     Battle of Chapultepec – Marines occupied the “Halls of Montezuma” and NCOs earned the “blood stripe.”

2.     The Battle of Guadalcanal –1st Marine Division landed on Guadalcanal launching the first United States land offensive of World War II. .

3.     The Battle of Tarawa –The Japanese commander proclaimed it would take a million Americans 100 years to conquer.  On 20 November 1943, Marines landed and secured the island within 76 hours, but paid a heavy price.

4.     The Battle of Iwo Jima – The largest and bloodiest all-Marine battle in Marine Corps history.  Admiral Chester W. Nimitz said, “Among the Americans who served on Iwo Jima Island, uncommon valor was a common virtue.”

5.     The Battle of Okinawa – This marked the last large action of World War II.  Due to the death of the Army commander, Major General Roy S. Geiger assumed command of the 10th Army.

6.     Second Battle of Fallujah – in 2004, intense house-to-house fighting marked the battle.  Comparisons to the battle of Hue City and the Pacific Island Hopping Campaign have been drawn to the fighting in Fallujah.

7.     The Battle of Marjah – In February 2010, Marines from 6th Marine Regiment and other Coalition Forces moved to occupy the District of Marjah.  This was believed to be the last Taliban stronghold in the Helmand Province.

 
4. Identify the “Pathbreakers” who have contributed to the Marine Corps’ legacy.

 

Marines should identify two of the three “Pathbreakers”:

1.     Montford Point Marines – African American Marines were initially segregated from normal recruit training sites and were sent to Montford Point (renamed Camp Johnson) which is adjacent to Camp Lejeune, N.C.  Approximately 20,000 African American Marines were trained at Monford Point and went on to serve with honor and distinction.

2.     Navajo Code Talkers – Code Talkers were Navajo men who transmitted secret communications on the battlefields of WWII.  Serving with distinction in every major engagement of the Pacific theater from 1942-1945, their unbreakable code played a pivotal role in saving countless lives and hastening the war’s end.

3.     Women Marines – Opha Mae Johnson is credited as the first woman Marine.  Johnson enrolled for service in 1918; during that year some 300 women first entered the Marine Corps.  The Marine Corps Women’s Reserve was established in 1943, and in 1948 Congress passed the Women’s Armed Services Integration Act and making women a permanent part of the regular Marine Corps.