No, President Trump Is Not Splitting Up The Navy And Marine Corps

President Donald Trump, followed by first lady Melania Trump, salutes as they step off Marine One for a departure ceremony, Tuesday, May 23, 2017, in Jerusalem.
AP Photo/Evan Vucci

Ah, the Marine Corps: amphibious experts, “small war” innovators, and very possibly the most insecure military outfit in human history, perennially afraid that its missions and equipment will be absorbed by the Navy or the Army.

Or maybe the Marine Corps will get its own cabinet department! That’s according to a two-week-old post making the rounds the past few weeks on social media, from the click-manufacturing insurgents at something called Vet TV. Author “Jesse James” drops some hot willy pete on readers with this lead paragraph:

President Trump will sign executive order 13801 this November 10th on the 242nd birthday of the Marine Corps, freeing the Marines from the Department of The Navy. The Marines will now fall under the newly created Department of Expeditionary Warfare.

Zounds! The Corps, far from being turned into Army infantry — as Presidents Herbert Hoover and Harry Truman notoriously suggested — gets its very own department and cabinet secretary. Yut yut your brains out!

Except if it sounds like bullshit, that’s because it is. Presidents tend not to preview executive orders five months in advance, and the Corps, which you’d expect to be pretty stoked about a promotion in the executive bureaucracy, says there’s no truth to the post.

"We have not heard anything about that," Marine Capt. Ryan Elizabeth Alvis, a public affairs officer Headquarters Marine Corps, told Politifact June 7.

Alvis added: “Semper fidelis.”

Politifact ruled the claim “Pants on Fire,” internet shorthand for being false... only more so.

The site that published the article bills itself as “THE COMEDY CENTRAL OF THE MILITARY,” which is impressive, given that the site also doesn’t officially launch until June 23. Its attempts at satire in this Marine-masturbation fantasy sound more like a rant from that twice-busted bocephus PFC over in the mortar platoon that everybody avoids on liberty:

The Marines will have an entirely new ROE and mission. Marine units that don’t accomplish the mission within the 2 month window will be reassigned by the Marine Corps, and will have to watch as another unit finishes the job. “The Marine Corps is a competitive place, we have no room or respect for weak bitches that can’t get in there fast, kill everyone, and get back to the ships in time to get to make the port calls in Asia.” Sgt Major Garrett explained.

Har har! Great joke. But your funnysad rants will be more believable if you make shit up about liberal presidents screwing with the Corps. Congrats on the pre-launch publicity, though.

Anyway, now you know what to tell your aunts when they forward you the “story” and ask what you think not having to be shipboard anymore. In the meantime, here’s some fun reading about people who still want to do away with the Corps, and here’s a legitimate piece about the lone politician who’s actually fighting for a separate Marine department. Semper fake news!

An aerial view of the Pentagon building in Washington, June 15, 2005. U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld defended the Guantanamo prison against critics who want it closed by saying U.S. taxpayers have a big financial stake in it and no other facility could replace it at a Pentagon briefing on Tuesday. (Reuters/Jason Reed JIR/CN)

Senior defense officials offered a wide range of excuses to reporters on Wednesday about why they may not comply with a subpoena from House Democrats for documents related to the ongoing impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump.

On Oct. 7, lawmakers subpoenaed information about military aid to Ukraine. Eight days later, a Pentagon official told them to pound sand in part because many of the documents requested are communications with the White House that are protected by executive privilege.

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Senators Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) and Johnny Isakson (R-GA) will announce legislation Wednesday aiming to "fix" a new Trump administration citizenship policy that affects some children of U.S. service members stationed abroad.

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The video opens innocently enough. A bell sounds as we gaze onto a U.S. Navy frigate, safely docked at port at Naval Base San Diego. A cadre of sailors, dressed in "crackerjack" style enlisted dress uniforms and hauling duffel bags over their shoulders, stride up a gangplank aboard the vessel. The officer on deck greets them with a blast of a boatswain's call. It could be the opening scene of a recruitment video for the greatest naval force on the planet.

Then the rhythmic clapping begins.

This is no recruitment video. It's 'In The Navy,' the legendary 1979 hit from disco queens The Village People, shot aboard the very real Knox-class USS Reasoner (FF-1063) frigate. And one of those five Navy sailors who strode up that gangplank during filming was Ronald Beck, at the time a legal yeoman and witness to one of the strangest collisions between the U.S. military and pop culture of the 20th century.

"They picked the ship and they picked us, I don't know why," Beck, who left the Navy in 1982, told Task & Purpose in a phone interview from his Texas home in October. "I was just lucky to be one of 'em picked."

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Defense Secretary Mark Esper on Tuesday casually brushed aside the disturbing news that, holy shit, MORE THAN 100 ISIS FIGHTERS HAVE ESCAPED FROM JAIL.

In an interview with CNN's Christiane Amanpour, Esper essentially turned this fact into a positive, no doubt impressing public relations and political talking heads everywhere with some truly masterful spin.

"Of the 11,000 or so detainees that were imprisoned in northeast Syria, we've only had reports that a little more than a hundred have escaped," Esper said, adding that the Syrian Democratic Forces were continuing to guard prisons, and the Pentagon had not "seen this big prison break that we all expected."

Well, I feel better. How about you?

On Wednesday, the top U.S. envoy in charge of the global coalition to defeat ISIS said much the same, while adding another cherry on top: The United States has no idea where those 100+ fighters went.

"We do not know where they are," James Jeffrey told members of Congress of the 100+ escaped detainees. ISIS has about 18,000 "members" left in Iraq and Syria, according to recent Pentagon estimates.

A senior administration official told reporters on Wednesday the White House's understanding is that the SDF continues to keep the "vast majority" of ISIS fighters under "lock and key."

"It's obviously a fluid situation on the ground that we're monitoring closely," the official said, adding that released fighters will be "hunted down and recaptured." The official said it was Turkey's responsibility to do so.

President Trump expressed optimism on Wednesday about what was happening on the ground in northeast Syria, when he announced that a ceasefire between Turkey and the Kurds was expected to be made permanent.

"Turkey, Syria, and all forms of the Kurds have been fighting for centuries," Trump said. "We have done them a great service and we've done a great job for all of them — and now we're getting out."

The president boasted that the U.S.-brokered ceasefire had saved the lives of tens of thousands of Kurds "without spilling one drop of American blood."

Trump said that "small number of U.S. troops" would remain in Syria to protect oilfields.

Kade Kurita (U.S. Army photo(

Kade Kurita, the 20-year-old West Point cadet who had been missing since Friday evening, was found dead on Tuesday night, the U.S. Military Academy announced early Wednesday morning.

"We are grieving this loss and our thoughts and prayers go out to Cadet Kurita's family and friends," Lt. Gen. Darryl Williams, superintendent of West Point, said in the release.

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