April 2013: Editorial

This month’s edition of the Gazette is unique, as we are celebrating the 100th anniversary of the Marine Corps Association, now known as the Marine Corps Association & Foundation. The cover of this issue features a replica of the masthead on the first-ever edition of the Gazette. You can also see on the cover how that masthead has changed through the years. In commemoration of the Association’s founding, we are publishing an edition that looks back at articles from the past, with two exceptions.

The first exception is an article by LtCol Art Brill, Jr., that takes a contemporary look at the Association and its history. LtCol Brill also gives insight to the current activities of the Association and how we go about the mission of advancing the professionalism of Marines.

The second exception is an article on page 94 by Maj Jonathan Burgess titled “A Modern-Day Time Machine.” In this interesting article, Maj Burgess looks at the Gazette’s past and at what have been the publication’s thematic trends. He also highlights the authors who have contributed to the Gazette throughout different stages of our history. It is remarkable to note how some themes tend to repeat themselves. In the post–World War II era, one of the themes that drew attention was the training of native troops, a theme that has resurrected itself in the modern era as the training of foreign forces. The interest in amphibious operations and small wars is once again seeing a resurgence as we wind down operations in Afghanistan.

The articles we have chosen to republish run the gamut from the first article in the first issue, “The Mobile Defense of Advanced Bases by the Marine Corps,” authored by then-Col John A. Lejeune, to “Transforming for the Chaordic Age” by LtCol Frank Hoffman, a frequent Gazette contributor. In between are an array of articles that, when they were first published, looked back in time and ahead to the future—a future we are now in. Many of the articles in this anthology are timeless. For example, the rifles that LtCol Brooke Nihart wrote about in “More Firepower—Smaller Units” may be in the museum, but his points about firepower remain relevant today.

We have included two articles by LtGen Louis Metzger. He was a frequent contributor to the Gazette throughout his career and on into retirement. Although The Basic School’s curriculum may have changed since his reminiscence of what it was like in 1939, his article, “Thoughts on Combat,” still resonates.

Of course no anthology would be complete without a contribution from another distinguished author who has written extensively for the Gazette through the years: LtGen B.E. “Mick” Trainor. We look back at his “New Thoughts on War.”

As a member of the Association, I want to remind you that every article we have ever published in Leatherneck and the Gazette is available to you in our online archives by going to www.mca-marines/gazette and clicking on “Archives” on the toolbar. If you do not have a username and password, call member services at 866–622–1775 and they will assist you. To paraphrase Gen Trainor, if you want to learn something new, read an old article.

Finally, for an overview of the history of your Association, you won’t want to miss our centennial video at www.mca-marines/org/gazette/centennial.

John Keenan