Commandant gives preview of the global Marine Corps in 2020


Water scarcity, regional conflict zones, and the “youth bulge:” these are all problems that may become the Marine Corps’ business in the near future.

That was the message from Marine Corps Commandant Gen. James Amos this week when he gave an audience at the Navy League’s Sea Air Space expo a glimpse into what’s ahead for the Corps. By 2020, he said, expect two new crisis Marine Corps crisis response forces positioned near potential conflict zones and a rotational force established in Guam like the one already conducting training deployments in Australia.

Amos also indicated that the future of the Corps will focus significantly on the African continent, home to massive resources, but also poverty, instability, and conflict.


In a briefing slide depicting potential future crises, Amos showed a map depicting likely causes of conflict and instability. Some global stressors, such as nuclear armed states and areas of terrorist activity, were self-explanatory; others, such as water stress, and the “youth bulge,” were less intuitive.

Regarding water stress, highlighted in much of Africa, Amos said this factor is important to watch because it drove behavior.

Amos slide 1 (3)

Screenshot from DoD video

“In those areas especially in the African continent, a gallon or a liter of clear fresh water, potable water, is worth more than a liter of petrol,” Amos said.

The youth bulge, also covering most of Africa and a portion of the Middle East, referred to regions where the population was increasing, in some places exponentially, Amos said.

With factors such as hunger, water stress, and joblessness, Amos said, “you throw in an increase on youth. Disaffected youth. unemployed youth. Youth that wander across borders. And then you look the areas where our fuel and our oil reserves are, and then you take a look at where nuclear weapons are, and you get a sense of just how dangerous the world is going to be.”

Amos slide 2 Marines in 2020 (4)

A  map showing the Marine Corps in 2020 overlays global conflict and crisis zones with forward-deployed Marine units. The continent of Africa will be surrounded on three sides by Marine Corps crisis response units as Special Purpose-Marine Air Ground Task Force Crisis Response finds a forward-staged location in the Gulf of Guinea, in addition to its current location in Europe, and is joined by SP-MAGTF Cent, covering U.S. Central Command.

Meanwhile, another crisis response force, SP-MAGTF South, will give U.S. Southern Command additional power to combat drug-related crime in central and South America.

And by 2020, the long-promised Marine Rotational Force-Guam will also be established, Amos said.

All this will give the Marine Corps greater presence in the Pacific, but also expand its crisis response presence around the larger land masses to the west, where burgeoning conflict zones have been identified.

“We’re in the Pacific,” Amos said. “It’s our backyard and we’re very comfortable in that neck of the woods again.”


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    Matthew 8:5-13

    New International Version (NIV)

    The Faith of the Centurion

    5 When Jesus had entered Capernaum, a centurion came to him, asking for help. 6 “Lord,” he said, “my servant lies at home paralyzed, suffering terribly.”

    7 Jesus said to him, “Shall I come and heal him?”

    8 The centurion replied, “Lord, I do not deserve to have you come under my roof. But just say the word, and my servant will be healed. 9 For I myself am a man under authority, with soldiers under me. I tell this one, ‘Go,’ and he goes; and that one, ‘Come,’ and he comes. I say to my servant, ‘Do this,’ and he does it.”

    10 When Jesus heard this, he was amazed and said to those following him, “Truly I tell you, I have not found anyone in Israel with such great faith. 11 I say to you that many will come from the east and the west, and will take their places at the feast with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven. 12 But the subjects of the kingdom will be thrown outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”

    13 Then Jesus said to the centurion, “Go! Let it be done just as you believed it would.” And his servant was healed at that moment.



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  2. So basically in order to keep America safe we have to go looking for problem areas? The president has already decreased staff , so your plan is to stretch what we already have in the corp so thin even thinner ? This is only going to create more divorce , more suicides and increase violence. I really wish you would worry about fixing that first and keeping America safe before other areas.

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