MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP SMEDLEY D. BUTLER, OKINAWA, Japan -- The 37th Commandant of the Marine Corps, Gen. Robert B. Neller, and the Sgt. Maj. of the Marine Corps Ronald L. Green visited service members with III Marine Expeditionary Force, the “tip of the spear,” in the Asia-Pacific region by travelling around and speaking with Marines Nov. 23 across the installations that comprise Marine Corps Base Camp Smedley D. Butler, Okinawa, Japan.
The readiness of a force is tied closely with its people, their training and has to do with the equipment they have. Those people who seek to be called upon first, could be called upon tonight, and they must be ready to go, said Neller.
The Marine Corps must be maintained as a crisis response force and a force in readiness, to include the ability for Marines to remain forward deployed and ready to fight and win.
Throughout their visit, Neller and Green stopped by Camps Hansen, Foster, and Kinser as well as Marine Corps Air Station Futenma to speak with Marines and sailors about the commandant’s vision for the future of the Marine Corps.
“I could feel the motivation when he was talking,” said Lance Cpl. Jefferson Lopez, an administration specialist with Command Element, 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit, III MEF. “Regardless of what topic he brought up, he kept emphasizing that we needed to be ready to fight.”
Part of his talks focused on the “Team of Marines” and how the superior-subordinate relationship should be developed and nurtured. This relationship is a two-way street. Junior Marines expect their leaders to guide them along their careers, and so must the superiors hold the Marines accountable to their own set of expectations.
“It’s a partnership,” said Neller. “Leaders want those they lead to be successful. Those that we lead need the leader to help them be successful and we work collectively to achieve that end. At the end of the day the Marine Corps is the institution we want it to be.”
The leader is obligated to provide the guidance and example that allows subordinates to exercise proper judgement and initiative, to include providing a clear mission and intent stated Neller in a message he released Corps-wide earlier in the year.
“You expect your leader to be out front,’ said Neller. “You expect that you’re going to get realistic and challenging training. The goal of a leader is to make everyone succeed.”
During the discussions, both Neller praised the Marines and sailors for their dedication and hard work in the Asia-Pacific region.
“You have an opportunity while you’re out here to do a lot of great training, not just on Okinawa, but all over the far-East,” said Neller.
After making their remarks, the CMC opened the floor to the audience, allowing them to ask questions regarding topics they wanted to address.
“Give your all to be the best human being, teammates and Marine or sailor possible. The end result will be an unbeatable force ready to take on any mission, any place and any time,” said Neller in his message.