SIR, WHO AM I? AN OPEN LETTER TO THE INCOMING COMMANDANT OF THE MARINE CORPS
28 March 19
President Donald Trump recently announced Lt. Gen. David H. Berger to be the 38th Commandant of the Marine Corps. With the question of who the next commandant is answered, I have an existential question for Lt. Gen. Berger: Sir, who am I? While seemingly dramatic, it is an essential question for a Marine Corps that finds itself at a crossroads of multiple personality disorder and questioned relevance on Capitol Hill. While relevance is in the eye of the beholder, you own our identity.
The Marine Corps can have a plurality of identities (marines as winged naval aviators, for example), but they must synergize around a central premise, or big idea. For without this big idea organizing principle, “no amount of acquisitions, execution, dedication, motivation, or even innovation can compensate” to enable the organization’s success.