In her new book “Hard Choices,” former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton reportedly claims there were Marines guarding the U.S. embassy in Tripoli at the time of the infamous Sept. 11, 2012 attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya–a statement that appears to contradict the sworn testimony of senior officers. The book, due out tomorrow, dedicates a full chapter to Benghazi, which has become a symbolic event for many characterizing the perceived failures of the current administration. Four Americans were killed in those attacks as the Defense Department scrambled to deploy a Marine Fleet Antiterrorism Security Team from Rota,…

A Marine Corps V-22 Osprey squadron is getting a makeover, just in time for its 62nd birthday. VMM-363, out of Marine Corps Air Station Miramar, Calif., created a new insignia to mark the anniversary, according to a Marine Corps news release. The squadron, known as the Lucky Red Lions, had an old insignia featuring a brick-red lion on a kelly-green shamrock background. The new insignia, which was awesomely commemorated in a birthday cake for the celebration, keeps the main elements of the design, but depicts the lion with a more modern stencil theme, with red ribbon banners at the top…

The word is out: Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel has nominated Gen. Joseph Dunford to be the 36th Commandant of the Marine Corps. But before you try to follow him on Twitter, watch out: there are lots of accounts out there using his image to trap unsuspected users in “phishing” scams and “romance hoaxes.” On Twitter alone, I counted ten different accounts using images of the real Gen. Joseph Dunford. Some include snippets of his biography, and some tweet bizarre messages at other users asking them to email an account so they can begin a friendship. All of them have fewer…

During my last few days in Afghanistan, I got a behind-the-scenes look at a “dress rehearsal” for a large-scale training exercise the Afghan National Army’s 215th Corps was planning at Camp Shorabak in Helmand province to showcase the Corps’ military training and enhance interoperability. The scale of the exercise was pretty impressive: it involved hundreds of Afghan soldiers, two of the 215th Corps’ Mi-17 helicopters, and over a dozen M1117 armored vehicles, plus Humvees and trucks. The M1117, used by the U.S. Army’s military police corps and the Army National Guard, has less armored protection than the Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected vehicle,…

Edit: Updates to correct caption credits Last week, we wrote about one Marine’s valiant mission to save a beloved Camp Pendleton memorial site from the wildfires that were burning through the base. Cpl. Marvin Arnold of Mike company, 3rd Battalion, 5th Marines organized a team of seven Marines for a trek up First Sergeant’s Hill at Camp San Mateo within the base, rescuing the nearly two dozen wooden memorial crosses just before the fires burned over the hill. The crosses are each specially marked and decorated to remember a fallen Pendleton Marine, frequently carried to the site and installed by…

During my short visit to Helmand Province, Afghanistan earlier this month, I was struck by the way honoring and remembering fallen brothers becomes an integral part of everyday life for Marines. One of the first stories I heard from a Marine on the C-17 ride over from Kabul to Camp Leatherneck was about a white board hanging in a company office with a simple inscription: “Going out to pick a fight.” It was a favorite catch-phrase of Sgt. Daniel Vasselian, a Marine with Bravo company, 1st Battalion, 9th Marines, a unit that is now returning home after a deployment providing…

Since the first military burial on May 13, 1864, Arlington National Cemetery has become the final resting place for more than 400,000 soldiers, sailors, airmen, Marines and their families. Those who on Sept. 11, 2001, died only a few hundred yards away at the Pentagon are buried here, as are the Challenger astronauts. Fifteen thousand soldiers from the Civil War — Union and Confederate — rest in Section 27 and Section 13, known as the Field of the Dead. Four thousand freed slaves, many identified only as “Citizen,” and two presidents also are buried at Arlington. Section 60 is the…

Corps officials will be soliciting Marines to volunteer for the latest step in testing the integration of women in combat arms positions across 14 duty stations between May 28 and June 9. Here’s are five things Marines should know: 1. The Corps is looking for about 500 volunteers — women and men — to serve as the ground combat element of an integrated task force that will be stood up at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, in June. 2. Marines interested in volunteering can do so three ways: on the Corps’ Manpower and Reserve Affairs website; by calling (703) 432-2513; or…

The results are in. According to a new Gallup Poll, Americans overwhelmingly believe that the Marine Corps is the most prestigious branch of the armed services. No word on whether it’s the dress blues, the tough image, or the elite missions undertaken by the likes of Force Recon and MARSOC, but with 47 percent of the vote, the Marines polled nearly three times higher for prestige than the next runner-up, the U.S. Air Force. As you can see from the Gallup chart below, the Marine Corps has been slowly increasing its edge over the other services in terms of prestige,…

“I’m going to need $100 dollars from each of you,” said medically retired Cpl. Kyle Carpenter with a chuckle. Humor is how the next Medal of Honor recipient opened a meeting with reporters last week at the Pentagon ahead of the White House’s announcement that he will become the second of only two living Marines to receive the nation’s highest valor award for fighting in Afghanistan. He sat down with us to discuss the White House’s announcement, the events of the day he covered a grenade with his own body to save a fellow Marine, his road to recovery and…

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