Best Zig Ziglar Quotes

I heard him speak once, and it was inspiring.  He was late in life but still had much youth in his presentation.  I wish I could come up with such inspiring messages:

  • Money won’t make you happy… but everybody wants to find out for themselves.
  • People often say motivation doesn’t last. Neither does bathing—that’s why we recommend it daily.
  • Money isn’t the most important thing in life, but it’s reasonably close to oxygen on the “gotta have it” scale.
  • Money will buy you a bed, but not a good night’s sleep, a house but not a home, a companion but not a friend.
  • People don’t buy for logical reasons. They buy for emotional reasons.
  • If you can dream it, you can achieve it.
  • Building a better you is the first step to building a better America.
  • Your attitude, not your aptitude, will determine your altitude.
  • Little men with little minds and little imaginations go through life in little ruts, smugly resisting all changes which would jar their little worlds.
  • Sometimes adversity is what you need to face in order to become successful.
  • Every choice you make has an end result.
  • Every obnoxious act is a cry for help.
  • Expect the best. Prepare for the worst. Capitalize on what comes.
  • Failure is a detour, not a dead-end street.
  • I believe that being successful means having a balance of success stories across the many areas of your life. You can’t truly be considered successful in your business life if your home life is in shambles.
  • If God would have wanted us to live in a permissive society He would have given us Ten Suggestions and not Ten Commandments.
  • If you can dream it, then you can achieve it. You will get all you want in life if you help enough other people get what they want.
  • If you don’t see yourself as a winner, then you cannot perform as a winner.
  • If you go looking for a friend, you’re going to find they’re very scarce. If you go out to be a friend, you’ll find them everywhere.
  • If you learn from defeat, you haven’t really lost.
  • If you treat your wife like a thoroughbred, you’ll never end up with a nag.
  • If you want to reach a goal, you must “see the reaching” in your own mind before you actually arrive at your goal.
  • It was character that got us out of bed, commitment that moved us into action, and discipline that enabled us to follow through.
  • It’s not what you’ve got, it’s what you use that makes a difference.
  • Many marriages would be better if the husband and the wife clearly understood that they are on the same side.
  • If you treat your wife like a thoroughbred, you’ll never end up with a nag.
  • People often say that motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither does bathing – that’s why we recommend it daily.
  • Statistics suggest that when customers complain, business owners and managers ought to get excited about it. The complaining customer represents a huge opportunity for more business.
  • Success is dependent upon the glands – sweat glands.
  • The foundation stones for a balanced success are honesty, character, integrity, faith, love and loyalty.
  • The way you see people is the way you treat them.
  • When you are tough on yourself, life is going to be infinitely easier on you.
  • You cannot perform in a manner inconsistent with the way you see yourself.
  • People who have good relationships at home are more effective in the marketplace.
  • You cannot climb the ladder of success dressed in the costume of failure.
  • Positive thinking will let you do everything better than negative thinking will.
  • Success is the maximum utilization of the ability that you have.
  • Remember that failure is an event, not a person. You cannot tailor-make the situations in life but you can tailor-make the attitudes to fit those situations.
  • You do not pay the price of success, you enjoy the price of success.
  • You were born to win, but to be a winner, you must plan to win, prepare to win, and expect to win.
  • Remember that failure is an event, not a person.
  • You will get all you want in life, if you help enough other people get what they want.
  • There has never been a statue erected to honor a critic.
  • Expect the best. Prepare for the worst. Capitalize on what comes.
  • If you go looking for a friend, you’re going to find they’re scarce. If you go out to be a friend, you’ll find them everywhere.

Kiss Your Password Security Goodbye

You may think that you have good password security.  More likely, you are like most people who re-use the same password for many accounts, don’t change it often enough and use your pet’s name or some other easy to find information that makes break in easy.

Face it, we are lazy, lax and don’t understand security and privacy. Nor do we understand the nature of identity theft until you are a victim.

So, unless your are fastidious about changing with complete randomness and creativeness, fugetaboutit, you’re toast…..here’s why.

THE BACKGROUND

From Wired:

It’s not a well-kept secret, either. Just a simple string of characters—maybe six of them if you’re careless, 16 if you’re cautious—that can reveal everything about you.

2012 bug

Your email. Your bank account. Your address and credit card number. Photos of your kids or, worse, of yourself, naked. The precise location where you’re sitting right now as you read these words. Since the dawn of the information age, we’ve bought into the idea that a password, so long as it’s elaborate enough, is an adequate means of protecting all this precious data. But in 2012 that’s a fallacy, a fantasy, an outdated sales pitch. And anyone who still mouths it is a sucker—or someone who takes you for one.

No matter how complex, no matter how unique, your passwords can no longer protect you.

Look around. Leaks and dumps—hackers breaking into computer systems and releasing lists of usernames and passwords on the open web—are now regular occurrences. The way we daisy-chain accounts, with our email address doubling as a universal username, creates a single point of failure that can be exploited with devastating results. Thanks to an explosion of personal information being stored in the cloud, tricking customer service agents into resetting passwords has never been easier. All a hacker has to do is use personal information that’s publicly available on one service to gain entry into another.

This summer, hackers destroyed my entire digital life in the span of an hour. My Apple, Twitter, and Gmail passwords were all robust—seven, 10, and 19 characters, respectively, all alphanumeric, some with symbols thrown in as well—but the three accounts were linked, so once the hackers had conned their way into one, they had them all. They really just wanted my Twitter handle: @mat. As a three-letter username, it’s considered prestigious. And to delay me from getting it back, they used my Apple account to wipe every one of my devices, my iPhone and iPad and MacBook, deleting all my messages and documents and every picture I’d ever taken of my 18-month-old daughter.

The age of the password is over. We just haven’t realized it yet.

Since that awful day, I’ve devoted myself to researching the world of online security. And what I have found is utterly terrifying. Our digital lives are simply too easy to crack. Imagine that I want to get into your email. Let’s say you’re on AOL. All I need to do is go to the website and supply your name plus maybe the city you were born in, info that’s easy to find in the age of Google. With that, AOL gives me a password reset, and I can log in as you.

First thing I do? Search for the word “bank” to figure out where you do your online banking. I go there and click on the Forgot Password? link. I get the password reset and log in to your account, which I control. Now I own your checking account as well as your email.

This summer I learned how to get into, well, everything. With two minutes and $4 to spend at a sketchy foreign website, I could report back with your credit card, phone, and Social Security numbers and your home address. Allow me five minutes more and I could be inside your accounts for, say, Amazon, Best Buy, Hulu, Microsoft, and Netflix. With yet 10 more, I could take over your AT&T, Comcast, and Verizon. Give me 20—total—and I own your PayPal. Some of those security holes are plugged now. But not all, and new ones are discovered every day.

The common weakness in these hacks is the password. It’s an artifact from a time when our computers were not hyper-connected. Today, nothing you do, no precaution you take, no long or random string of characters can stop a truly dedicated and devious individual from cracking your account. The age of the password has come to an end; we just haven’t realized it yet.

Passwords are as old as civilization. And for as long as they’ve existed, people have been breaking them.

In 413 BC, at the height of the Peloponnesian War, the Athenian general Demosthenes landed in Sicily with 5,000 soldiers to assist in the attack on Syracusae. Things were looking good for the Greeks. Syracusae, a key ally of Sparta, seemed sure to fall.

But during a chaotic nighttime battle at Epipole, Demosthenes’ forces were scattered, and while attempting to regroup they began calling out their watchword, a prearranged term that would identify soldiers as friendly. The Syracusans picked up on the code and passed it quietly through their ranks. At times when the Greeks looked too formidable, the watchword allowed their opponents to pose as allies. Employing this ruse, the undermatched Syracusans decimated the invaders, and when the sun rose, their cavalry mopped up the rest. It was a turning point in the war.

The first computers to use passwords were likely those in MIT’s Compatible Time-Sharing System, developed in 1961. To limit the time any one user could spend on the system, CTSS used a login to ration access. It only took until 1962 when a PhD student named Allan Scherr, wanting more than his four-hour allotment, defeated the login with a simple hack: He located the file containing the passwords and printed out all of them. After that, he got as much time as he wanted.

During the formative years of the web, as we all went online, passwords worked pretty well. This was due largely to how little data they actually needed to protect. Our passwords were limited to a handful of applications: an ISP for email and maybe an ecommerce site or two. Because almost no personal information was in the cloud—the cloud was barely a wisp at that point—there was little payoff for breaking into an individual’s accounts; the serious hackers were still going after big corporate systems.

So we were lulled into complacency. Email addresses morphed into a sort of universal login, serving as our username just about everywhere. This practice persisted even as the number of accounts—the number of failure points—grew exponentially. Web-based email was the gateway to a new slate of cloud apps. We began banking in the cloud, tracking our finances in the cloud, and doing our taxes in the cloud. We stashed our photos, our documents, our data in the cloud.

Eventually, as the number of epic hacks increased, we started to lean on a curious psychological crutch: the notion of the “strong” password. It’s the compromise that growing web companies came up with to keep people signing up and entrusting data to their sites. It’s the Band-Aid that’s now being washed away in a river of blood.

WHERE AND WHEN IT BEGAN (SORT OF)

No one can be sure except that since passwords were first used, there were bad guys trying to hack into them.  Here is an exposition of how it became an epidemic:

In 2009, a minor gaming website called Rockyou.com was hacked; although you’ve probably never heard of the site, the hack has probably affected you or someone you know. Almost every genuine hack over the last three years can be traced back to the Rockyou leak.

The reason it was so significant is it totally changed the way hackers do business. Before Rockyou, hackers had to build word lists of potential passwords using traditional dictionaries; the 14 million or so Rockyou passwords provided an instant database showing how people actually construct their passwords.

We’re all familiar with the hoops passwords make us jump through – requiring both letters and numbers, the use of upper-case and lower-case letters, a minimum number of characters, and the use of punctuation. Of course,we’re all human, so we want passwords to be easy to remember while fulfilling these arcane rules.

The list leaked from RockYou confirmed our grammatical bias: upper case letters tend to start words, while special characters or numbers come at the end. One of the most common ways to combine letters and numbers memorably was to add names & dates together – so Patton1945 or Napoleon1815 were common, for example.

Publicly available data makes this even easier; for example, databases are available containing the name of every Facebook user. These, when combined with every 4-digit number combination and a dictionary list of common words will break as many as 40 per cent of internet users’ accounts within minutes. This creates an even greater problem, as many people reuse passwords, meaning one crack can compromise multiple accounts.

Most people have multiple different internet accounts; collecting data and monitoring user activity through these accounts is at the core of many websites’ business models. The temptation to reuse important passwords for trivial sites that require a sign-in, like price comparison sites, restaurant bookers, dating sites or online shops, is almost irresistible. Of course, many of these sites are far from secure.

The Rockyou leak started a chain reaction; a huge number of sites have been hacked since, releasing even more password data. Equally, technology has advanced enormously. The sort of PC you can buy in Currys can attempt 8.2 million password combinations per second. Cryptographic feats that were the stuff of legend in the Second World War could be done on your iPhone; the sort of 16-digit passcodes thought uncrackable during the Cold War are now within the reach of cracking by skilled hackers with low budgets. Goodness only knows what state-sponsored outfits in the US or China can do.

If you look in the lists of passwords and usernames leaked online, it’s fairly easy to find yourself; with the huge amount of websites we sign up to these days, it’s almost inevitable that at least one of the sites where you have an accounts has been hacked in the last two years. I was able to find my own cracked username and password (taken from a hacked wargaming forum) with a little diligent searching. The biggest damage that could be done to me from that leak is losing control of my forum account; if I’d reused that password elsewhere, it could have been catastrophic.

Of course, each character you add to your password ramps up the time it takes to crack; adding even one letter can take crack time from hours to days, putting you into the category of not “unbreakable” – I doubt such a thing exists – but simply not worth the hassle.

The current best advice is to have passwords composed of 20 characters, with no real words, and your gobbledegook has to include upper and lower case letters, symbols, numbers and punctuation, all randomly scattered through the word. On top of that, you need to have a different password for every site you use and change your password for all of them every three months.

Benghazi Issues and Facts That Are Being Put Together Like a Jigsaw Puzzle

Back in the 70’s, we had Watergate.   Some people broke into an office of the opposing party and it was scandalous.  People went to jail, a president resigned and we had morals.

Benghazi has happened and 4 people died despite prior attacks and cries for more protection before and during the attacks.  It will probably be swept under the rug except for the sex scandal.  Although people may go to jail it is unlikely.  The president will be protected by the biased media and this will slide off of him like Teflon.

The attorney general who appears to be complicit in this and other scandals will also likely be untouched.  The Secretary of State to whom the embassy reported to will also escape justice as she has in the other times she has broken the law (Whitewater, travelgate……)

For now, here is a collection of where we stand.  Hopefully history will document the injustice that was done.

The scandal timeline

Anecdotal: This has happened before.  JFK had mistresses who were spies and may have leaked intelligence.

Don’t ever use Gmail if you want privacy

Patraeus could be prosecuted for Adultery, he might sing like a bird if offered a deal.
Hillary was informed about the Benghazi debacle on 8/16

To no one’s surprise, Eric Holder knew about Benghazi reports for months

Classified documents found on Broadwell’s computer

FBI suppressed Beghazi scandal to protect Obama 10/10/12

The veteran agent related to me that FBI agents assigned to the case were outraged by what were they were told by senior officials: The FBI was going to hold in limbo their findings until after the election.
“The decision was made to delay the resignation apparently to avoid potential embarrassment to the president before the election,” an FBI source told me. “To leave him in such a sensitive position where he was vulnerable to potential blackmail for months compromised our security and is inexcusable.”

Petraeus might have leaked secret prison information to Paula Broadwell

On Saturday, The New York Times reported that House Majority Leader Eric Cantor spoke to an FBI whistle-blower two weeks ago who accused Petraeus of not only having an extramarital affair but potentially jeopardizing the security of classified information.

During the same university speech, Braodwell may have also divulged information that Petraeus knew “within 24 hours” of CIA annex’s request for reinforcements, reported Israel National News.

“The challenging thing for Gen. Petraeus,”she stated, “is that in his new position, he’s not allowed to communicate with the press. So he’s known all of this – they had correspondence with the CIA station chief in Libya, within 24 hours they kind of knew what was happening.”

Earlier she had said the military could have sent reinforcements.

“They were requesting the – it’s called the C-in-C’s In Extremis Force – a group of Delta Force operators, our very, most talented guys we have in the military. They could have come and reinforced the consulate and the CIA annex.”

Patraeus successor Allen caught up in scandal

Guys, keep your zipper shut!

Senator Feinstein wants to get to the bottom of this.

“It’s been like peeling an onion,” she said.

Petraeus’ resignation follows an FBI investigation that, as Mitchell said, “morphed into an investigation about the possibility of national security secrets” as Petraeus’ alleged extramarital affair with biographer Paula Broadwell was revealed.

According to NBC News:

Officials tell NBC News that the affair was revealed because Broadwell sent anonymous, threatening emails to Jill Kelley, 37, described as a close friend of the Petraeus family. Kelley, who lives in the Tampa, Fla. area, was a volunteer social liaison to MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa.

Investigating who sent the emails to Kelley, the FBI discovered the connection between Petraeus and Broadwell, officials say.

As Mitchell summarized NBC News’ reporting on the relationship between Broadwell, Kelley, and Petraeus, Feinstein interrupted: ”Well, this is all news to me. We were not told this. This is the first time I’ve learned of this. This makes me think, ‘Well, how many other things are there, too?’”

NBC News also reports:

According to reporting by NBC’s chief justice correspondent Pete Williams, a senior law enforcement official said a call to a congressional staffer came from an agent who was initially involved in the investigation but who was later removed from the case because he knew an associate of one of the people being investigated.  The agent knew someone on the Hill and called that person, a Republican staffer, according to the official. But that phone call had no effect on either the course of the investigation, the involvement of Mueller — who was following it closely long before Cantor called him — or the decision to notify Clapper, the official says.

November 10, 2012; The 237th Anniversary of the Marines

First to Fight, the Marines are one of the 5 Military Branches that protect and serve our country.  They have protected our freedom and the countless lives of many around the world.  I am a big supporter of the military and celebrate each branch for what they offer.

BACKGROUND

Marine Corps History

On November 10, 1775, the Continental Congress passed a resolution stating that “two battalions of Marines be raised” for service as landing forces with the fleet. This established the Continental Marines and marked the birth of the United States Marine Corps. Serving on land and at sea, early Marines distinguished themselves in a number of important operations, including their first amphibious raid on foreign soil in the Bahamas in March 1776, under the command of the Corps’ first commandant, Capt. Samuel Nicholas. The 1783 Treaty of Paris ended the Revolutionary War and as the last of the Navy’s ships were sold, the Continental Navy and Marines disbanded.

Following the formal re-establishment of the Marine Corps on July 11, 1798, Marines fought in conflicts with France, landed in Santo Domingo and conducted operations against the Barbary pirates along the “Shores of Tripoli.”

Marines participated in numerous operations during the War of 1812, including the defense of Washington at Bladensburg, Md. They also fought alongside Andrew Jackson in the defeat of the British at New Orleans. Following the War of 1812, Marines protected American interests around the world in areas like the Caribbean, the Falkland Islands, Sumatra and off the coast of West Africa, and close to home in operations against the Seminole Indians in Florida.

During the Mexican War, Marines seized enemy seaports on both the Gulf and Pacific coasts. While landing parties of Marines and Sailors were seizing enemy ports, a battalion of Marines joined General Winfield Scott’s army at Pueblo and marched and fought all the way to the “Halls of Montezuma,” Mexico City.

Although most Marine Corps service during the Civil War was with the Navy, a battalion fought at Bull Run, and other units saw action with blockading squadrons at Cape Hatteras, New Orleans, Charleston and Fort Fisher. During the last third of the 19th century, Marines made numerous landings around the world, especially in the orient and the Caribbean.

Following the Spanish-American War in 1898, Marines fought during the Philippine Insurrection, the Boxer Rebellion in China, in Nicaragua, Panama, The Dominican Republic, Cuba, Mexico and Haiti.

In World War I, Marines distinguished themselves on the battlefields of France, as the 4th Marine Brigade earned the title of “Devil Dogs” for actions at Belleau Wood, Soissons, St. Michiel, Blanc Mont and the final Muesse-Argonne offensive. Marine aviation, which began in 1912, was used for the first time in a close-air support role during WWI. More than 309,000 Marines served in France and more than a third were killed or wounded in six months of intense fighting.

During the two decades before World War II, the Marine Corps began to more completely develop its doctrine and organization for amphibious warfare. The success of this effort was proven at Guadalcanal, Bougainville, Tarawa, New Britain, Kwajalein, Eniwetok, Saipan, Guam, Tinian, Peleliu, Iwo Jima and Okinawa. By the war’s end in 1945, the Corps had grown to include six divisions, five air wings and supporting troops, about 485,000 Marines. Nearly 87,000 Marines were killed or wounded during WWII and 82 earned the Medal of Honor.

As the Marine Corps attempted to modify the Fleet Marine Force (FMF) for operations in the nuclear age, the Corps began a decade long struggle to save the FMF and, in affect, its own existence. The Marine Corps had peaked in strength in 1945 at nearly half a million men in six divisions and five aircraft wings. The postwar Corps shrank to fit federal budgets rather than adjust realistically to fit the contingency needs of the Cold War era. Available manpower fell to 83,000 men in 1948 and dropped to just over 74,000 by the spring of 1950. About 50,000 men were assigned to the operating forces, but the FMF had only about 30,000 men in the two skeltal divisions and aircraft wings. Fewer than 12,000 Marines comprised FMFPac which included the 1st Division at Camp Pendleton and the 1st Marine Aircraft Wing (MAW) at El Toro, California. On the East Coast, the 2d Division at Camp Lejeune and the 2d MAW at Cherry Point, making up FMFLant, numbered just under 16,000 Marines. At the outbreak of the Korean War, no Marine unit of any size was based or deployed in the Far East.

The Corps’ supporting establishment was so small and its tasks for maintaining Marine Corps bases so extensive that many FMF troops spent more time housekeeping than training. The Marine Corps share of the federal budget was simply not enough to buy adequate manpower, training, or new equipment. The main threat to the nation was seen in inflation and unbalanced budgets rather than in the Soviet armed forces. On the eve of the Korean War, the FMF seemed doomed to fall to six battalion landing teams and twelve squadrons in 1950.

While Marine units were taking part in the post-war occupation of Japan and North China, studies at Quantico, Va., concentrated on attaining a “vertical envelopment” capability for the Corps through the use of helicopters. Landing at Inchon, Korea, in September 1950, Marines proved that the doctrine of amphibious assault was still viable and necessary. After the recapture of Seoul, the Marines advanced to the Chosin Reservoir only to see the Chinese Communists enter the war. In March, 1955, after five years of hard fighting, the last Marine ground forces were withdrawn. More than 25,000 Marines were killed or wounded during the Korean War.

The realities of the Korean War brought major changes in the basing and deployment of Marine Corps forces. The Corps strength ballooned to 192,000 men in June 1951, to 232,000 a year later and nearly 250,000 by June 1953. More than half the troops actually served in the operating forces, and the 1st Marine Division and 1st MAW, operationally employed in Korea, were kept up to strength. In the meantime, the 2d Marine Division and 2d MAW reached full strength for their European contingencies. In June 1951 Headquarters activated the 3d Marine Brigade, built around the 3d Marines at Camp Pendleton. In 1952 the brigade expanded to become the 3d Marine Division, and the same year the 3d MAW formed and occupied a new base in Miami. In another important reorganization, Headquarters in 1951 formed an organization known as Force Troops in order to provide the heavy artillery and other combat support and combat service support units necessary to sustain a Marine division in a land war.

The three-division/three-wing force structure decreed by the June 1952 passage of the Douglas-Mansfield Act, gave legislative support to the stated roles and missions of the Corps. The defense assumptions and programs of the Eisenhower Administration, however, left the Marine Corps role, and the corresponding basing and deployment strategy, less clearly defined. The emphasis on strategic forces over conventional forces, coupled with domestic economic implications of high defense costs and unbalanced federal budgets, challenged Marine Corps leaders of this period.

During the years 1953 to 1955, significant changes in the basing and deployment of Marine forces were realized. The 3d Marine Division deployed from Camp Pendleton to the Far East in the summer of 1953. Based in Japan, the Division followed regimental landings in Japan and Okinawa with a full-dress division landing exercise on Iwo Jima in March 1954. Significantly, the division began redeploying from Japan to Okinawa in 1955 and by February 1956 the Headquarters of the 3d Marine Division was moved to Okinawa where its remains today. Teamed with the 3d Division, the bulk of the 1st Marine Aircraft Wing, in Japan with headquarters at Atsugi, provided the air portion of a ready U.S. expeditionary force in the Far East.

The 1st Marine Division, meanwhile, which had been in Korea since the summer of 1950, was returned to Camp Pendleton in 1955. The 3d MAW during the same period moved from the East to the West Coast to support Pacific deployments.

In 1954, the 1st Provisional Marine Air-Ground Task Force, built around a reinforced infantry regiment and a reinforced air group, was established at Hawaii in response to strategic requirements in the Pacific Theater. One reinforced regiment of the 3d Marine Division, together with elements of the 1st Marine Aircraft Wing were shifted from the Far East to Oahu to build the task force, later called the 1st Marine Brigade, to desired strength.

On the other side of the world, the commitment of a Marine battalion landing team to the Sixth Fleet in the Mediterranean, which began in 1948, continued except for brief periods in 1950-51 and 1955. During the Korean War, this practice was briefly interrupted due to wartime needs and during 1955 a reduction in amphibious shipping forced the termination of the rotating assignment for nearly a year. The deployment to the Sixth Fleet was designed to give the fleet commander a ready landing force in an area left unstable in the aftermath of World War II.

Events in the Far East from 1955 on likewise pointed out the need for a ready battalion of Marines afloat with the fleet, and from 1960 on, the 3d Marine Division maintained such a floating battalion under Commander Seventh Fleet.

In July 1958, a brigade-size force landed in Lebanon to restore order. During the Cuban Missile Crisis in October 1962, a large amphibious force was assembled, but not landed. In April 1965, a brigade of Marines landed in the Dominican Republic to protect Americans and evacuate those who wished to leave.

The period from 1956-1960 witnessed the Corps’ continuing development of a permanent base structure to support its force in readiness mission as well as the procurement of supplies and equipment for a wide range of contingencies. Bases were developed stateside for cold-weather training at Pickel Meadows, and for desert warfare and supporting arms training at Twentynine Palms, both in California. Budget cuts and resulting reduced end strengths, however, became formidable obstacles to meeting desired manning levels for FMF units. The reductions resulted in all three divisions being placed on reduced manning levels in 1957 and total Marine Corps strength fell below 200,000. Commandant of the Marine Corps Annual Reports for the years 1957 through 1960 reflect the reduced manning levels throughout the FMF, stating of the Divisions and Wings, “their capability for sustained combat has been seriously diminished.” Reserve training also suffered during this period due to lack of funding.

By 1960, Marine Corps strength had fallen to 170,000 – down 30,000 in just three years. Over the same period the Marine Corps “green dollar” budget dropped from an already austere $942 million in FY1958 to $902 million in FY1961. Certain elements of the FMF had to be placed in cadre status. Perhaps just as damaging to the Corps’ readiness posture was the low priority given in the “blue dollar” budget to the construction of amphibious shipping and particularly helicopter-carrying ships, which threatened the development of the vertical assault mission.

To improve readiness in the Pacific, a system was implemented to rotate infantry battalions between the 3d and 1st Divisions. Beginning in 1959, the “transplacement” program had battalions forming and training in the 1st Division, then deploying to Okinawa for fifteen months’ service as a cohesive unit. The 2d Division began a similar program in 1960 which aided personnel stability and continuity, but as in the Pacific, it meant that several battalions could not be easily deployed in a crisis.

Nevertheless, in 1960 the Marine Corps began a five-year surge in its readiness that brought it to its highest level of peacetime effectiveness by the eve of the Vietnam War. The results of the Presidential election of 1960, coupled with internal redirection in the Corps, combined to form the highly favorable conditions for the Marine Corps to consolidate its amphibious force in readiness mission. The “Flexible Response” strategy of the new administration was ideally suited to the Marine Corps — stressing conventional force improvements in manpower, equipment modernization, and strategic mobility. Marine Corps budgets grew, as did the strength ceilings, and just as significantly, improvements were realized in obtaining amphibious shipping. During this period, as well, Headquarters enhanced the readiness of the Reserve with the formation of the 4th Marine Division and 4th Marine Aircraft Wing in the Marine Corps Organized Reserve.

The combination of increased amphibious exercises and contingency deployments kept the tactical units of the FMF busy during the early 1960s. The size of the possible Marine role in Europe grew as Headquarters aimed at a larger role in NATO. In 1964 II MEF conducted Operation Steel Pike I, an amphibious exercise in Spanish waters that exceeded all earlier exercises in both the size of the Marine force deployed and the distance covered. An amphibious force of 60 ships carried 22,000 Marines and over 5,000 vehicles to the amphibious objective area.

While FMF Atlantic forces were being exercized in Europe, the Caribbean, and Africa, FMF Pacific units trained throughout the Far East, Hawaii, and California. In 1964 there were 45 landing exercises worldwide, and by the beginning of the major U.S. involvement in Vietnam, in 1965, the FMF, both regular and Reserve, was as effective a force as the Corps had ever fielded in peacetime.

The landing of the 9th Marine Expeditionary Brigade at Da Nang in 1965 marked the beginning of a large-scale Marine involvement in Vietnam. By the summer of 1968, after the enemy’s Tet Offensive, Marine Corps strength in Vietnam rose to about 85,000. The Marine withdrawal began in 1969 as the South Vietnamese began to assume a larger role in the fighting. The last ground forces left Vietnam by June 1971. The Vietnam War, the longest in the history of the Marine Corps, exacted a high cost, with more than 13,000 Marines killed and 88,000 wounded.

The Vietnam War proved to be the ultimate test of the Corps’ basing and deployment decisions of the 1950s and early 1960s. From the March 1965 landing of Marine ground troops as Da Nang until the departure of the last large Marine units in June 1971, the war impacted drastically on all Marine forces within and outside the III Marine Amphibious Force. Peak Marine strength in Vietnam was reached in 1968 when more than 85,000 Marines were in Vietnam out of a Marine Corps numbering just over 300,000.

By 1972 the Marine Corps was once again down to 200,000 men and post-Vietnam redeployments had returned the Corps to the same basing and deployment patterns that had been in effect from 1960 to 1965. The 3d Marine Division was back on Okinawa and the 1st Marine Brigade had been reconstituted in Hawaii. The 1st Marine Division was back in Camp Pendleton and the 3d MAW remained at El Toro. On the East Coast, the 2d Marine Division and 2d MAW remained in North Carolina.

In July 1974, Marines evacuated U.S. citizens and foreign nationals during the unrest in Cyprus.

During the 1970s, the Marine Corps assumed an increasingly significant role in defending NATO’s northern flank as amphibious units of the 2nd Marine Division participated in exercises throughout northern Europe.

As it moved into the 1970s, the Marine Corps once again faced close scrutiny of its missions, force structure, and personnel policies. The Marine Corps continued to emphasize global strategic flexibility and reemphasized the Corps’ amphibious mission, developing the concept of “sea-basing,” which aimed at greatly increasing sea-borne logistic support. At the same time, FMF Atlantic launched its first time NATO exercise outside the Mediterranean when a Marine Amphibious Unit (MAU) conducted maneuvers in Norway and northern Germany in 1975. These exercises, which became annual and expanded to brigade size, and their underlying mission of preparing to assist in the defense of NATO’s Northern flank, represented the Marine Corps single most significant change in deployment patterns until the end of the decade.

The revolution in Iran, the seizure of the U.S. Embassy and hostages there, and the Soviet intervention in Afghanistan in 1979 gave impetus to a Department of Defense plan to improve U.S. non-NATO military capability. The Rapid Deployment Force was created in response to the realization of the range of contingencies short of general war that faced the United States. In particular, the CONUS-based joint task force, with designated forces from all four services, was created with responsibility for operational planning, training, and exercises for designated rapid deployment forces worldwide with the initial focus on Southwest Asia and the Indian Ocean. The new force widened the FMF’s force in readiness role without compromising its amphibious mission.

The Corps played a key role in the development of the Rapid Deployment Force, a multi-service organization created to ensure a flexible, timely military response around the world. The Maritime Pre-Positioning Ships (MPS) Program was instituted in late 1979 with the goal of providing three Marine amphibious brigades ready for airlift to potential crisis areas where they would unite previously positioned ships carrying their equipment and supplies. The MPS concept gave the Marine Corps and the U.S. a significant new dimension in mobility, sustainability, and the global response.

An increasing number of terrorist attacks on U.S. embassies around the world took place in the 1980s. In August 1982, Marines landed at Beirut, Lebanon, as part of a multinational peacekeeping force. For the next 19 months these units faced the hazards of their mission with courage and professionalism. In October 1983, Marines took part in the highly successful, short-notice intervention in Grenada.

In December 1989, Marines responded to instability in Central America during Operation Just Cause in Panama to protect American lives and restore democracy.

The Iraqi invasion of Kuwait in August 1990 led to the largest movement of Marine forces since World War II. Between August 1990 and January 1991, 24 infantry battalions, 40 squadrons (more than 92,000 Marines) deployed to the Persian Gulf as part of Operation Desert Shield. The air campaign of Operation Desert Storm began Jan. 16, 1991, followed by the main overland attack Feb. 24 when the 1st and 2nd Marine Divisions breached the Iraqi defense lines and stormed into occupied Kuwait. Meanwhile, the threat from the sea in the form of Marine Expeditionary Brigades held 50,000 Iraqis in check along the Kuwait coast. By the morning of Feb. 28, 100 hours after the ground war began, the Iraqi army was no longer a threat.

In December 1992, Marines landed in Somalia marking the beginning of a two-year humanitarian relief operation there. In another part of the world, land-and carrier-based Marine Corps fighter-attack squadrons and electronic warfare aircraft supported Operation Deny Flight in the no-fly zone over Bosnia-Herzegovina. During April 1994, Marines once again demonstrated their ability to protect American citizens in remote parts of the world when a Marine task force evacuated 142 U.S. citizens from Rwanda in response to civil unrest in that country.

Closer to home, Marines went ashore in September 1994 at Cape Haitian, Haiti, as part of the U.S. force participating in the restoration of democracy in that country. At the same time, Marines were actively engaged in providing assistance to America’s counter-drug effort, battling wildfires in the western United States, and aiding in flood and hurricane relief operations.

WORLD WAR II

Not to diminish any other time in their history, but to call out a particular time of sacrifice before technology and exemplifying hand to hand combat to save the world from oppression, I found this:

World War II

Color photo of the USMC War Memorial, a bronze statue of six men planting a flagpole with an American Flag into the ground.

Photograph of the USMC War Memorial, which depicts the flag-raising on Iwo Jima. The memorial is modeled on Joe Rosenthal’s famous Raising the Flag on Iwo Jima.

In World War II, the Marines played a central role in the Pacific War. The battles of Guadalcanal, Bougainville, Tarawa, Guam, Tinian, Cape Gloucester, Saipan, Peleliu, Iwo Jima, and Okinawa saw fierce fighting between Marines and the Imperial Japanese Army.

Philip Johnston proposed the use of Navajo as a code language to the Corps. The idea was accepted, and the Navajo code was formally developed and modeled on the Joint Army/Navy Phonetic Alphabet.

During the battle of Iwo Jima, photographer Joe Rosenthal took the famous photograph Raising the Flag on Iwo Jima of five Marines and one Navy Corpsman raising the American flag on Mt. Suribachi. Secretary of the Navy James Forrestal, having come ashore earlier that day, said of the flag-raising, “…the raising of that flag on Suribachi means a Marine Corps for the next five hundred years.” The acts of the Marines during the war added to their already significant popular reputation. By the end of the war, the Corps expanded from two brigades to six divisions, five air wings, and supporting troops, totaling about 485,000 Marines. In addition, 20 defense battalions and a parachute battalion were set raised.[43] Nearly 87,000 Marines were casualties during World War II (including nearly 20,000 killed), and 82 were awarded the Medal of Honor.[44]

Despite Secretary Forrestal’s prediction, the Corps faced an immediate institutional crisis following the war due to the low budget. Army generals pushing for a strengthened and reorganized defense establishment attempted to fold the Marine mission and assets into the Navy and Army. Drawing on hastily assembled Congressional support, and with the assistance of the so-called “Revolt of the Admirals,”the Marine Corps rebuffed such efforts to dismantle the Corps, resulting in statutory protection of the Marine Corps in the National Security Act of 1947.[45] Shortly afterward, in 1952 the Douglas-Mansfield Bill afforded the Commandant an equal voice with the Joint Chiefs of Staff on matters relating to the Marines and established the structure of three active divisions and air wings that remain today.

Finally, what makes the title Marine so valuable?  Click to find out!

SEMPER FI