During World War II, Britain’s elite special forces reaped victory after victory with their covert and unconventional tactics. President Franklin D. Roosevelt was inspired by the success of British Commandos and chose to commission the creation of an American counterpart – Marine Raiders.
The Marine Raiders were a special branch of the Marines that have their own special mission & objectives, separate from the rest of the marine. It was the first Special Force unit that America has ever formed. And boy oh boy, did it reaped success!
At the beginning, it met some resistance from various parties, even from the marines themselves. But the successes of the Raiders eventually earned everyone’s trust.
How could they not? They managed to launch a series of completely unpredictable guerilla attacks that eventually led to many conquered Japanese islands. They paved the way for the bigger teams to come in & completely annihilate enemy forces.
Because it was their specialty to do light-infantry warfare. Focusing on strategy & tactics instead of an all-out muscle war.
Marine Raiders operates in unusually small units. They’re characterized by their quick & unpredictable attacks. Usually transporting via rubber boats and operating behind enemy lines, their attacks are like the ones of an Assassin’s.
During the war, the Raiders were essential to victory because they’re the ones tasked with critical attacks. Conquering key islands after islands with very little resources. They carried their missions with unquestionable valor.
Like a high-skilled assassin versus a battalion of army. They went inside the enemy territory guerilla-style, finds their objectives, and gets out as soon as possible. Usually within hours of arrival.
Nowadays, the spirit of Marine Raiders still burns bright among the US Military in the form of MARSOC (Marine Corps Forces Special Operations Command).
Their mottos are: “Always faithful, always forward.”
Individual Traning Course (ITC) is a nine-month course designed to bring out the best of somebody’s physical & mental capabilities under heavy pressure.
Mimicking the complexity & stress levels of a real combat, creating a reality that’s as close as possible to the level of real missions.
ITC is broken down into 4 phases:
Intensive Language Training according to their assigned missions, all marine raiders learn all the conversational & local idioms of the language. As we discussed earlier, Language mastery plays a crucial role in bonding with the locals & communicating with the locals.
During such situations, skills such as persuasion & negotiation mean nothing if the team cannot communicate clearly. That is why the Language Training Course is very important.
On some rare case, marines are required to undergo an even deeper level course called Advanced Linguistics Course to really hone in on their communication ability.
After the ITC, selected marines will then undergo another intensive 18-months training where they’re equipped with all sorts of courses that are guaranteed to help them in real-combat situations such as:
Marine raiders specialize in light-infantry, guerilla warfare missions. Which basically means that they travel in small units of lightly armed man, operating deep behind enemy lines.
They will go into the enemy territory using rubber boats. They’ll carry their missions swiftly & efficiently. And they’ll strike directly into the heart of the enemy’s operational base.
Once they’re done with business… enemies are left dead on their feet.
Next thing you know, they’ve already collected on-the-ground intelligence, eliminated an influential figure in the enemy party, and secured a way for the rest of the Army to conquer the island in the midst of enemy’s confusion.
It’s not an exaggeration to say that their missions are a big part of why America have been so successful in the war against Japan, and the war against terrorism that we’re experiencing at the moment.
Because their legacy still lives in the form of MARSOC, and their unique way of fighting is proven extremely effective. Especially now, in the complex war against terrorism.
Aside from all the special missions, Marine Raiders are also tasked with training, advising and assisting local friendly forces – including naval and maritime military and paramilitary forces – to enable them to support their government’s security & strengthening the military presence of the US.
We now know the Raiders have been reincarnated as the MARSOC. But their legacies has always been clear. They fought their way to maintain a safe America & create a better world to live in – for all of us.