Does Every U.S. Soldier Really Need to Know How to Fight the Enemy?

A member of the Civilian Expeditionary Workforce talks to a local business owner, Kandahar Province, Mar. 13, 2013 (Kentucky National Guard photo by Lt. Col. Dallas Kratzer).
A member of the Civilian Expeditionary Workforce talks to a local business owner, Kandahar Province, Mar. 13, 2013 (Kentucky National Guard photo by Lt. Col. Dallas Kratzer).
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One of the mantras of the U.S. Marine Corps is that every Marine is first and foremost a rifleman, regardless of their actual military occupational specialty. Whether accurate or not, that reflects an idea that has historically animated all militaries: Those who actually fight with enemies are seen as the centerpiece and the model. All the rest of the military are expected to reflect the capabilities, psychological characteristics, moral foundation, ethos and physical attributes of fighters. This idea, call it the “warrior mindset,” has become so deeply ingrained in the American military that it is seldom discussed or analyzed. But […]

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