ASSISTANT CHIEF OF STAFF FOR LOGISTICS, U.S. MARINE CORPS FORCES PACIFIC
As the Logistics Division, HQ Marine Corps Forces Pacific, we set conditions to ensure our forces get into position and persist as they stand in force to generate effects the Joint Force requires. Our operating concept is to generate these effects with smaller and more agile units. This is in part because we recognize that at some point, each activity we execute in support of these forces is likely to be contested, kinetically and non-kinetically. Smaller, more agile units reduce demand and lower our force’s operational and logistics signature.
The key effect we generate with logistics is endurance. In a contested environment both dynamically positioned forward stocks, paired with innovative ways to execute distribution, are necessary to generate this effect. Forward positioned stocks must be dispersed and masked through signature management. Executing distribution will take a synchronized effort across multiple warfighting domains to protect high value resources and mitigate risk.
Forward positioned sustainment overcomes the tyranny of distance within the theater to the material to warfighters when and where it is needed. It also mitigates risk of – and reduces the demand for – high value air and surface distribution platforms. We are working with our allies and partners to find ways to leverage each other’s logistics strengths. We’re building a network within the areas where we anticipate we will be operating with our allies and partners, so that we can leverage each other’s capabilities to create the endurance that we need.
Forward positioned sustainment will not meet all requirements for endurance; we will affect distribution in a contested environment. We are developing and practicing command and control techniques integrated between the supported commander and the supporting commanders to be able to drive logistics into the shore at a time and place of need. We understand that we must create a security bubble around those forces, and that there are different levels of risks that are born when we execute that operation in support of enduring operational effects.
It’s not a Marine Corps or a Navy in isolation; it’s not an Army or Air Force on their own. Generating the ability to operate in a contested environment supports the entire joint force. We’re working in parallel and integrating efforts to ensure we are able to generate effective endurance in the theater for the Joint Force.
SEAPOWER JULY/AUGUST 2023