Yesterday the Senate voted to add 1000 more billets to the Marine Corps, all of which will be assigned to embassy security details, according to the Marine Corps Times;
It’s not immediately clear how this would affect the Marine Corps’ ongoing personnel drawdown. Current plans call for shedding about 5,000 Marines from active duty each year through 2016 as the service works toward a new authorized end strength of 182,100.
Mixed signals from Congress? No that’s impossible. Of course, this government reacting a day late and a dollar short from the Benghazi terrorist attack from 9-11 this year.
“Today, there are 126 U.S. diplomatic missions outside the United States without Marine Corps security protecting [them], including parts of Asia and Africa where we suspect that al Qaida is expanding its presence,” [Senator John] McCain said.
Extra Marines are needed, he said, because moving Marines from some diplomatic facilities to improve security at other facilities would be unwise. “Increasing one — as is necessary in light of the attack at Benghazi — cannot come at the expense of another,” he added.
And the military is also supposed to reassess the way they protect diplomatic missions, and the needs of the State Department for military security. The addition of a thousand Marines almost doubles the current size of 1200 Marines assigned to the Marine Corps Embassy Security Group, according to the Marine Corps Times. So, like in everything else, the military is supposed to help the civvies salvage their reputations.