Dear Members,

Thank you for your membership in 2011! Your membership and support has made a difference. This year we were able to recognize the professional excellence of over 9,000 Marines, provide over 200 Commanders’ Unit Libraries to Marine units worldwide, and our newest program, the Commanders’ Forum helped to resource 20 unique unit leader developed learning opportunities. You played a major role in all this and I thank you.

December has been a busy month. On 6 December we hosted a class and social hour for Alpha Company Lieutenants at the Basic School. We were moved by the character, integrity and pride these young men and women display. I wish more Americans were able to witness the duty and dedication these Marines have for our country and the sacrifices they willing accept.

That same week, we hosted the 2011 Winter Ground Dinner with General James F. Amos, Commandant of the Marine Corps, and MCA&F member, as our featured speaker. The Commandant briefed the audience on current operations as well as the future of the Corps. We appreciate the Commandant’s support of MCA&F along with the humor he exercised during his brief. If you weren’t able to attend the event, visit our website HERE for the video.

Also in December, The MARINE Shop had an opportunity to host an American hero, Medal of Honor recipient and writer, Colonel Wes Fox, USMC (Ret). Col. Fox is a true warrior and gentleman and his new Leatherneck Original series book, Six Essential Elements of Leadership: Marine Corps Wisdom of a Medal of Honor Recipient, is the latest from Col Fox. Please drop by the Marine Shop in Quantico, VA or Camp Lejeune, NC or visit to purchase an autographed copy he signed for MCA&F members.

As we trade out the 2011 calendar for the 2012, I want to make you aware of two upcoming events taking place on each coast. The MCA&F Luncheon at Cherry Point takes place on 11 January. Our luncheon speaker is MajGen Jon M. Davis, Commanding General, 2d Marine Aircraft Wing. On 1 February we will host the second annual MCA&F West Coast Dinner in Carlsbad, California during the Marine West Expo . The dinner features BGen Francis Kelley, Commander, Marine Corps Systems Command as our guest speaker. I hope you can make it to one of these events. Click HERE to register for these events or to see our professional events schedule for 2012.

Again, thank you for your support this year! I wish you all Happy Holidays & All the best in 2012. Stay safe and keep our Marines in your thoughts and prayers. As always, please let me hear from you. You can do that by emailing the Marine Corps Association & Foundation at

All the Best & Semper Fidelis,

Edward G. Usher, III
Major General, USMC (Ret)
President and Chief Executive Officer


We have received an increase in calls from our members regarding timely postal service delivery of their Marine Corps Association and Foundation magazines, Leatherneck and Marine Corps Gazette. Originally this issue was limited to Southern California but has spread to other states over the course of the last two months. After reviewing the delivery chain, we have learned that the problem rests squarely with the Post Office.

We have complained about the late deliveries to the USPS and have solicited solutions from our printer as well. We apologize for the delay in delivery of the printed magazines but rest assured you can still access both publications digitally prior to the arrival of the print publication. Although we are dependent on the postal service to implement a solution to their delivery problem, we will work with our printer to develop alternate courses of action.

Uninterrupted Connection – That’s the Goal – And, it’s EASY to Do! 
Don’t forget to update your mailing address if you have recently moved. It’s a snap - Just log into your account, OR, call us at 866-622-1775.

Not a current member? Click HERE to renew or join and consider a multi-year membership to save hassle.

Unit Commanders –Use appropriated funds to get both Leatherneck and Marine Corps Gazette for the  Marines in your unit. Order your Unit Subscriptions TODAY! Click Here to order today.


  • Reader / Member Input. Do YOU have something newsworthy to share? Send to  and our Member Update Coordinator will consider including your item.
  • The MARINE Shop Book Signings. MCA was fortunate to host a pair of book signing events during December:

    On 8 December, The MARINE Shop at Quantico, hosted prolific writer and international affairs authority Ralph Peters, author of Endless War, Wars of Blood and Faith and his newest, Lines of Fire.

    On 15 December, at The MARINE Shop at Quantico we were also fortunate to host Marine Corps legend and Medal of Honor recipient Colonel Wes Fox, author of Marine Rifleman, Courage and Fear: a Primer and his newest book, Six Essential Elements of Leadership: Marine Corps Wisdom of a Medal of Honor Recipient.

  • MCA Area Rep Corner.

    Quantico / Washington DC Area:
    On 6 December 2011, the Marine Corps Association & Foundation deployed to The Basic School at Quantico to host a social hour with the students and staff of Alpha Company, TBS. Following a MCA&F Mission and Membership brief by Leatherneck Magazine Editor, Colonel Walt Ford, USMC (Ret) and SgtMaj Kevin Bennett, USMC (Ret) in one of the new TBS classrooms, the Lieutenants of Alpha Company adjourned to the Green Carpet area next to the "Hawk" for some heavy appetizers and draft beer courtesy of MCA&F.  An hour of camaraderie ensued with MCA&F staff chatting with Lieutenants about MOS selections, duty station preferences and life as a Marine. The MCA&F established the tradition of hosting a social event for each TBS class during their training in 2011 and plans on continuing the custom.

    Here are some pictures of the event:

    On 8 December, MCA&F co-hosted the Winter Ground Dinner with HQMC PP&O Division at the Crystal Gateway Marriott in Arlington, VA with General Amos, Commandant of the Marine Corps as the guest speaker. Here are a few pictures:

  • Special MCA&F Website Feature. Don’t have time to visit our website every day? Keep up with all the latest happenings, blog entries and special news announcements!  It is easy! Click HERE to set up your MCA Notifications Settings and you will start getting a daily email message with hot linked headlines of all the latest news and postings. Click on the link to read what you want!
  • Websites of the Month. For the most in-depth news and analysis of Middle Eastern military-political and geo-political affairs check out the DEBKA File HERE. Their tagline, “We start where the media stop” is understated but quite accurate!

    Here is a website of significant interest to ALL veterans: United States Department of Veterans Affairs Home Page:  Site of choice for veterans benefits, services, news, jobs for veterans and MORE.

    And, for something closer to home, visit the Leatherneck website and check out the FAQ page HERE. They just updated the FAQ page with a really useful set of instructions about how to locate a former or active duty Marine.  Check it out and find the buddies you served with! It’s all about camaraderie!

  • Hot Video of the Month. 
    Click HERE for a great photo montage video of weapons currently use.
  • RICKROLL Fractal pattern camouflage tattoos approved for ground MOS Marines! No waivers required.

Q. More Marines in movies about Marines.
“ We are gonna refortify this s__t hole and protect it like it was your daughter’s cherry.  I ain’t gonna die here.”

In which movie did this stirring exhortation appear, what was the name of the character who spoke the lines, who is the actor playing the part and which war is portrayed?


How to Win.  Send your answers to and please include your name and address so we can send your prize. We will hold a drawing of all CORRECT responses one week from the Member Update release date and then announce the winner in the next edition of the Update.

The Prize! In addition to our brand new Marine Corps Association, “Once a Marine – ALWAYS a Marine” Coin, we are now including a copy of one of the late Major Gene Duncan’s Books as a bonus.

Here’s our trivia question from last month:

Question: Movies about Marines – Identify the movie and character speaking from the dialogue quote:

(1)“You talk the talk. Do you walk the walk?”

(2) “Hey Walt, can you keep it down?  I’m having trouble hearing the artillery.”

“Life is tough.  It’s tougher when you are stupid.”

“Captain Jerome, United States Marine Corps, and you sir are my prisoner.”

(1) Full Metal Jacket - Animal Mother (Adam Baldwin)
(2) Generation Kill - Cpl Josh Ray Person (James Ransone)
(3) Sands of Iwo Jima - Sgt Stryker (John Wayne)
(4) The Wind and the Lion - Marine Captain Jerome (Steve Kanaly)

Congratulations to 1stSgt Jack Closson, USMC (Ret) of Costa Mesa, California for winning our last contest.

Only one contestant got the answer wrong this month ( and he got it ¼ right…) out of about 80 or so who responded. Congratulation to everyone – You all need to watch fewer movies!

ONLINE access to BOTH Leatherneck and Marine Corps Gazette is a KEY Benefit that comes with EVERY Membership / Subscription at no extra charge! 

Click on the Links below to Visit Each magazine’s website TODAY.

Marine Corps Gazette
The January Gazette spans a spectrum of interests. In the lead article, Lt Gen Terry Robling articulates the case for the MV-22. In an extremely interesting article Lt Col  Frank Hoffman USMC (Ret) examines the ethos of the Corps in "The Marine Mask Of War." I think you will find it provocative. At the tactical level we have an article that postulates on a better way to use LAR in Afghanistan. Our series on PTSD by Capt (USN) William Hoctor continues. It gives leaders and shipmates practical tools to assist.  Please enjoy the January Gazette.

Happy New Year from your Leatherneck staff. You may have your January magazine in hand now. If so, we hope you are enjoying the issue, and particularly our kickoff article celebrating the Centennial of Marine Corps aviation, "Marine Helicopter Operations in Korea: The Early Years," the short vignette on the 1992 World Series game where the color guard carried the Canadian flag upside down, the cover article on Major General Smedley D. Butler, "The Marine Who Saved the Republic, or Did He?," and Exercise Dawn Blitz and current ops in Afghanistan. You'll see, there's even more.

If you are enjoying your January Leatherneck, stand by for February and the planned articles celebrating the 50th anniversary of Col John Glenn's historic space orbit of the earth, an article on the Third Marine Division on Iwo Jima with some photos I doubt you've seen and, well, that's enough of a tease. Thank you again for your support and stay in touch:

This Month in Marine Corps History


7 Dec 1941        
The Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor left more than 3,000 Marines and Sailors killed in action.
Concerned about rising Japanese militarism, South East Asia territorial ambitions and seizures, the United States responded by moving the Pacific fleet from San Diego to Pearl Harbor, on Oahu and started a build-up of forces in the Philippines.  With tensions increasing, the U.S. stopped oil exports to Japan in July 1941 further complicating Japanese resource problems. After meticulous planning and numerous rehearsals, the Japanese responded with an air raid on the new home of the Pacific fleet with the intention of destroying the capitol ships there in an effort to neutralize the fleet, buy time to seize new, resource rich territory, and allow an expansion into the Dutch East Indies and Malay. The attack occurred during a transition time when most senior planners in both navies believed the capitol ship of the day to still be the battleship, so they were the primary objective of the air raid and the American aircraft carriers stationed at Pearl Harbor were fortuitously at sea during the raid.

The Japanese launched the attack with 353 fighters, bombers and torpedo planes from 6 carriers from north of the island of Oahu with spectacular results. Four of eight battleships there were sunk and all were damaged. They also sank 3 cruisers, 3 destroyers and several other ships and destroyed 180 aircraft though they did not attack support infrastructure such as fuel storage, shipyards, and the power station.

Japanese losses were relatively light with only 29 aircraft shot down and 6 midget submarines which participated in the operation, sunk. The U.S. Navy, with much of the shore structure intact was able to raise all but two of the sunk battleships. They were repaired and returned to service and a short time later the aircraft carriers participated in the Doolittle raid on Tokyo and in the battle of Midway, proving to the world that the aircraft carrier was now the new capitol ship.

After hearing of their success on board his flagship, Japan’s Admiral Nagumo, the commander of the raid was heard to mutter “I fear we have awakened a sleeping giant and filled him with a terrible resolve.” Prophetic words…

In a supporting operation, the Japanese bombarded Midway Island on the same day. 1stLt George Ham Cannon, USMC became the first Marine in the war to be awarded (Posthumously) the Medal of Honor by exhibiting extraordinary courage and disregard of his own condition when he remained at his command post after being wounded during the bombardment and continued to conduct combat operations and ensured the other wounded were evacuated and treated before him. He later died from blood loss.

13 Dec 1967
3dBn, 26th Marines was ordered to reinforce Khe Sanh, Vietnam.
Located in Quang Tri province, only about 8 miles from the Laotian frontier and about the same distance from the demilitarized zone with North Vietnam, the area turned into a massive Marine base with a supporting airstrip used to control I-Corps and interdict the increasingly important Ho Chi Minh trail. After a massive build-up of Marine and South Vietnamese Army units, the base, along with other fire bases in the area, came under increasing artillery and mortar fire, battalion size probes, and assaults resulting in a 77 day siege after the base was isolated and only able to be re-supplied by air. In March 1968, Operation Pegasus was launched with Marine, Army and South Vietnamese forces used to break through the surrounding NVA forces to the besieged Marines at Khe Sanh.  Read all about the battle HERE.


MCA&F hosts professional and awards dinners, professional lunches, book signings and more. Check out our professional events schedule at Click on the link for details and event registration. Here are a couple of events coming up in the near future:

  • 11 January 2012           
    MCA&F Luncheon at Cherry Point
    – MajGen Jon M. Davis, USMC, Commanding General, 2d Marine Aircraft Wing as guest speaker.
  • 1 February 2012         
    Marine West Dinner
    at Carlsbad, California – BGen Francis Kelley, USMC, Commander, Marine Corps Systems Command as Guest Speaker

  • 28 March 2012           
    MCA&F Ground Logistics Awards Dinner
    -  Guest Speaker - TBD


Thanks to ALL who supported the
Marine Corps Association Foundation in 2011

We Sincerely Appreciate Your Support!

Special shout out to Manuel Carazo for providing food baskets and chocolates for the MCA&F Team!

Here are some of the support programs MCA&F uses to advance leadership, foster development and recognize professional excellence in our Marines:
Commanders’ Professional Library Program
Marine Excellence Awards Program
Commanders’ Forum Program

Visit our website at to check out the programs we utilize to support the professional development and professional recognition of Marines.

MCAF is a 501(c)(3) charitable foundation so your support may qualify for tax deductions.

MCA&F is NOW part of the Combined Federal Campaign!
We invite you to make MCA&F at least one of your donation recipients during this year’s CFC Campaign!


CFC Donor Code is 19821

Corporate Support Welcome! MCA&F welcomes corporate support for our professional programs. Contact LeeAnn Mitchell at for more information.

Call Us toll-free: 877-469-6223 (877-4MY-MCAF) or 703-640-0174 (

Take us with you when you move!
When you change your address, tell us so we can ensure you keep getting your magazines!  Go ONLINE and update your record, call us at 866-622-1775 or email us at

*** Remember to update your EMAIL Address too!***

Mailing List
Send the names and email addresses of people who would like to read MCA&F’s Member Update and we will add them to our mailing list. Send to:

Give us your opinion and suggestions about the MCA&F Member Update? Send to:

“Marines” and the Eagle, Globe and Anchor are trademarks of the U.S. Marine Corps, used with permission.
Neither the U.S. Marine Corps nor any other component of the Department of Defense has approved, endorsed or authorized this newsletter.