US and Israel alter military focus

Both the United States and Israel are in the middle of reassessing and reworking their war fighting capability. In the US the shift is linked to the growing importance of the Pacific theater of operations. In Israel the focus is on countering new generations of weapons supplied by Iran to different terrorist groups, and to a rising crisis with Iran itself.

The first sign of major change is in the US Marines, who are reducing numbers, shifting to smart weapons, and reducing support for heavy weapons including eliminating all main battle tanks.  The Marines will be downsized, mainly by cutting units they will no longer support. 

Some of the reduction involves the Marines getting rid of so-called legacy equipment. For example, artillery cannon batteries will be reduced from 21 to five; Hawaii-based Marine Light Attack helicopter squadron 367 “Scarface” will be deactivated; at least one Tiltrotor V-22 Osprey medium lift squadron will also be deactivated. A heavy lift Marine squadron known as the “Heavy Haulers,” Squadron 462 based in Miramar, California, will also be eliminated.

Instead of the war on terror, the US Marines are shifting to sea denial and control missions and will be formed up into three littoral regiments.

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