Issue: Marine Special Operations Company ordered to redeploy from Afghanistan
A Marine Special Operations Company from 2d Marine Special Operations Battalion, U.S. Marine Corps Forces, Special Operations Command, was recently ordered by the Commander, Special Operations Command, Central Command, to redeploy out of Afghanistan following events that reduced the MSOC’s ability to conduct effective counter-insurgency operations in the area. Due to these events, the 2d MSOB Commander lost trust and confidence in the senior leadership of the MSOC and, after extensive consultation with the Commander, MARSOC, relieved the MSOC Commander and Senior Enlisted Marine of their duties April 3, 2007.
Q1: Were members of the Marine Special Operations Company officially relieved of their duties?R1: Yes. The Company Commander and Senior Enlisted Marine of the MSOC currently deployed in the CENTCOM area were relieved of duty April 3, 2007.
Q2: Who made the decision to relieve them of duty?R2: The Commander of the 2d Marine Special Operations Battalion, LtCol. Paul D. Montanus, after extensive consultation with the MARSOC Commander, MGen. Dennis J. Hejlik, made the decision to relieve the MSOC Commander and Senior Enlisted Marine of their duties.
Q3: Why were they relieved?R3: The Commander of the 2d MSOB lost trust and confidence in the MSOC leadership.
Q4: Were these Marines relieved in connection with the allegations that members of the MSOC reacted with an uneccesary escalation of force in response to an ambush March 4?R4: The MSOC was involved in events, including the March 4 ambush, which caused the 2d MSOB Commander to lose trust and confidence in the leadership of the MSOC. Further details are not available for public release at this time pending decisions regarding potential administrative or disciplinary action.
Q5: What are the names of the Marines who were relieved?R5: The relief of these Marines was an administrative action. In the interest of protecting their privacy, MARSOC will not release their names to the public.
Q6: Who replaced the MSOC Commander?R6: The officer selected to take command of the MSOC is a member of the 2d Marine Special Operations Battalion. However, in order to preserve the safety and security of MARSOC personnel, it is our policy not to identify specific unit members below the battalion level.
Q7: What will the MSOC do next?R7: The MSOC will continue its deployment in support of SOF operations in the CENTCOM area as needed until it completes its scheduled deployment.
Q8: Will any legal action be taken against the Marines who were relieved or any other members of the MSOC?A8: No determination regarding further administrative and/or disciplinary action has been made at this time.
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