Commandant's Birthday Message: 2016

 

Commandant's Birthday Message: 2015

 

Commandant's Birthday Message: 2014

 

Commandant's Birthday Message: 2011
For ten years now, our Corps has been engaged in continuous combat operations against those who threaten the security of America and our allies. We turned the tide in the Anbar province of Iraq and continue to see success today in southwest Afghanistan. While it has come at a cost... we have much to be proud of.

This past year in operations around the world including humanitarian disaster relief, counter-piracy, theater security cooperation, special operations, counter-insurgency and many more, you continued to solidify our place as America's Expeditionary Force in Readiness. Since the Continental Congress created two battalions of Marines 236 years ago, our legacy as an ever-ready, ever capable, victory producing organization remains intact.

Our rich heritage of selfless service and fidelity to Nation and to one another lives on in all who currently wear the Eagle, Globe and Anchor - those who have answered the clarion call to duty with remarkable courage, dedication and unshakable resolve that Marines are so well known for. To all Marines - past and present - and especially to our families ... I extend my deep gratitude for all you have done and all you continue to do.

As we celebrate our 236th birthday, let us look forward to future challenges whatever - they may be - and reaffirm our pledge to be America's premier crisis response force; to be the first to fight... Always ready for the toughest and most challenging assignments.

Happy 236th Birthday, Marines!

Semper Fidelis,







Happy birthday USMC: 236 Years
Commandant's Birthday Message: 2010
Sixty years ago, the United States Marine Corps—as it has throughout our history—demonstrated its vital role as America’s Expeditionary Force in Readiness. Just weeks after North Korean Communist forces crossed the 38th Parallel, the First Marine Provisional Brigade landed in South Korea, forming the backbone of the perimeter around the city of Pusan. The efforts of the “Fire Brigade” at Pusan allowed for the daring amphibious landing at Inchon and set the stage for one of the most savage campaigns in our Corps’ history—the Chosin Reservoir. As we pause to celebrate our 235th Birthday, we pay special tribute to the Marines of the Korean War and recognize their contributions to our enduring legacy.

This past year marked the end of Marine Corps combat operations in Iraq. Beginning with the invasion in March 2003 and through the next seven years of fighting, our Corps acquitted itself valiantly in the Anbar province and throughout the country. Locations such as Fallujah and Ramadi have taken their place in the illustrious battle history of our Corps. Our efforts in defeating the insurgency helped to build a brighter future for all Iraqis.

For 235 years, at sea and ashore, Marines have succeeded in every clime and place . . . where hardship and adversity have often been the common thread. Today, in the rugged mountains and valleys of Afghanistan—and recently in earthquake-damaged Haiti . . . in flood-ravaged Pakistan . . . or off the coast of Africa—we continue to protect our Nation, just as we did 60 years ago in Korea.

To the Marines and Sailors deployed overseas, to those training and preparing for their next deployment and to the warriors who no longer wear our uniform . . . we honor your selfless service to the Nation. To our loved ones who endure the many difficulties that come with being part of the Marine Family, I want to extend my sincerest thanks for all you have done and all you continue to do.

Happy 235th Birthday, Marines!

Semper Fidelis,







Commandant's Birthday Message: 2009
United States Marines represent the best young men and women our Nation has to offer. To be a Marine is to be a member of America's warrior class - to be one of the few who steps forward with the courage and conviction to face whatever dangers await. Our Nation expects her Marines to be ready when the Nation calls; to leave family and the comforts of home behind; to march into battle and thrive under austerity; and to come home under a victory pennant.

From Al Anbar in the west of Iraq, to Helmand Province in the south of Afghanistan, our Corps of Marines can always expect to be found where the fight is toughest. Such is our history. Today, as we write the final chapter on our victory in Iraq, we will increasingly take the fight to the enemy in Afghanistan and add new pages to our legacy in places called Delaram, Now Zad, and Garmsir. One day, we will return to our naval heritage and patrol the high seas with our Navy brothers. Such is our future.

As we celebrate our Corps' 234th Birthday, we first pause to reflect and pay tribute to those Marines who have given the last full measure in defense of freedom. We extend our deepest gratitude to our Marine Corps families - the unsung heroes who endure hardship and sacrifice so that we are able to go forward and accomplish any mission. We extend our appreciation to our countrymen who have answered our every need. And we celebrate the magnificent men and women who willingly and selflessly continue to go into harm's way to protect this great Nation.

To all who have gone before, to those who wear the uniform today, and to the families that give us the strength to forge ahead - I wish you all a heartfelt Happy 234th Birthday!

Semper Fidelis,

James T Conway
General, U.S. Marine Corps





Commandant's Birthday Message: 2008
During the summer of 1982, in the wake of a presidential directive, Marines went ashore at Beirut, Lebanon. Fifteen months later, on 23 October 1983, extremists struck the first major blow against American forces—starting this long war on terrorism. On that Sunday morning, a suicide bomber drove an explosive-laden truck into the headquarters of Battalion Landing Team 1/8, destroying the building and killing 241 Marines and corpsmen.

Extremists have attacked our Nation, at home and abroad, numerous times since that fateful day in Beirut. Their aim has always been the same—to kill as many innocent Americans as possible. The attacks of 11 September 2001 changed our Nation forever, and our President has resolved that this Nation will not stand idle while murderous terrorists plan their next strike. Marines will continue to take the fight to the enemy—hitting them on their own turf, crushing them when they show themselves, and finding them where they hide.

Only a few Americans choose the dangerous, but necessary, work of fighting our Nation’s enemies. When our chapter of history is written, it will be a saga of a selfless generation of Marines who were willing to stand up and fight for our Nation; to defend those who could not defend themselves; to thrive on the hardship and sacrifice expected of an elite warrior class; to march to the sound of the guns; and to ably shoulder the legacy of those Marines who have gone before.

On our 233rd birthday, first remember those who have served and those “angels” who have fallen—our reputation was built on their sacrifices. Remember our families; they are the unsung heroes whose support and dedication allow us to answer our Nation’s call. Finally, to all Marines and Sailors, know that I am proud of you and what you do. Your successes on the battlefield have only added to our illustrious history. Lieutenant General Victor H. “Brute” Krulak said it best when he wrote, “… the United States does not need a Marine Corps … the United States wants a Marine Corps.” Your actions, in Iraq and Afghanistan and across the globe, are at the core of why America loves her Marines.

Happy Birthday, Marines!

Semper Fidelis,

James T Conway
General, U.S. Marine Corps





Commandant's Birthday Message: 2007
Since the birth of our Nation, our liberty has been purchased by valiant men and women of deep conviction, great courage, and bold action; the cost has often been in blood and tremendous sacrifice. As America's sentinels of freedom, United States Marines are counted among the finest legions in the chronicles of war. Since 1775, Marines have marched boldly to the sounds of the guns and have fought fiercely and honorably to defeat the scourge of tyranny and terror. We are Marines — that is what we do.

In the words of President John F. Kennedy: "In the long history of the world, only a few generations have been granted the role of defending freedom in its hour of maximum danger." Magnificent heroes fought in the wheat fields of Belleau Wood, in the snows of the Chosin, and on the streets of Hue City. Your generation bears this obligation now, and it is borne on mighty and capable shoulders. Just like the Marines at Belleau Wood — we are once again engaged in sustained operations ashore. Just like at Belleau Wood — the Marines have been given the toughest sector and have prevailed over a resilient and determined enemy — who has made us pay for our gains. Once again, as in any struggle, the road ahead is far from certain, but as Marines, we are not dissuaded by the challenges of war or the tough conditions of a warrior's life. Indeed, we don't just accept our destiny — we shape it.

On our 232nd birthday, to every Marine — those still in uniform and those who have served honorably in the past — be proud of who you are and what you do. Know that your citizenship dues have been paid in full; you are part of this Nation's elite warrior class. Cherish our families who offer marvelous support, abiding resolve, and steadfast patience. Remember those who have served and those who have fallen — their names are chiseled on the roll call of America's heroes. Those who have carried the battle colors of our Corps have forged our heritage, and today's generation of leathernecks chart our future. Carry the colors with pride; carry them with honor.

Happy birthday, Marines!

Semper Fidelis

James T Conway
General, U.S. Marine Corps

Commandant's Birthday Message: 2006
On November 10th, 1775, our Corps was born as the Continental Congress raised the "first and second battalions of American Marines." Each Year as we celebrate our birthday, we pause to reflect on the Marines of yesteryear who fought in our touchstone battles and forged the modern Marine Corps with their courage, integrity, and undying commitment to their fellow Marines. Each of our storied battles is a link in the long chain that binds all Marines together- from the Continental Marines at Bunker Hill to the Teufelhunden crossing the wheat fields of Belleau Wood. This chain binds us to the Marines on the crest of Mount Suribachi; it passes through the ice and snow of Chosin Reservoir and the steaming jungles of Vietnam, and it anchors firmly today in the sands of Iraq.

This year's celebration again finds many from our ranks, serving with distinction in harm's way. As we have for the past 231 years, our Corps is answering the Nation's call. I can report first hand that our Marines fighting on the front lines of the Long War on Terror are performing brilliantly, acquitting themselves with honor, dedication, and dignity in difficult and dangerous environments.

All Marine are making a difference. Regardless of where you are serving, you are adding new chapters to the legacy that was earned with sweat and blood on old battlefiellds. Just as previous generations of Marines shaped today's Marine Corps, your deeds are molding the Corps of tomorrow. Our Corps has never been stronger, and all Americans are extremely proud of your magnificent performance and unwavering commitment to server our Corps and country. With high caliber Marines like you, our future has never been brighter.

Another irreplaceable element of our success as Marines is the terrific support we receive from our families. Through the long hours, the exercises, and the combat deployments, their support is unconditional and firm. They give us love and devotion, providing us with the strength to drive on when duty calls. Today we should all acknowledge our loved ones for their patient, steadfast service.

To all who have earned the title Marine, to the superb Sailors who serve with us in every clime and place, and to our precious families-- I wish each one of you a heartfelt Happy 231st Birthday.

Semper Fidelis and Keep Attacking!


M. W. Hagee
General, U.S. Marine Corps


Commandant's Birthday Message: 2005
On November 10th, 1775, the Second Continental Congress resolved to raise two battalions of Continental Marines marking the birth of our United States Marine Corps. As Major General Lejeune’s message reminds us, the ensuing generations of Marines would come to signify all that is highest in warfighting excellence and military virtue. Each November as Marines the world over celebrate the birth of our Corps, we pay tribute to that long line of “Soldiers of the Sea” and the illustrious legacy they have handed down to us.

This past year has been one of continuous combat operations overseas and distinguished service here at home – a year of challenges that have brought out the very best in our Corps. In Iraq and Afghanistan, Marine courage and mastery of complex and chaotic environments have truly made a difference in the lives of millions. Marine compassion and flexibility provided humanitarian assistance to thousands in the wake of the South East Asian Tsunami, and here at home, Marines with AAVs, helicopters, and sometimes with their bare hands saved hundreds of our own fellow Americans in the wake of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. Across the full spectrum of operations, you have showcased that Marines create stability in an unstable world, and have reinforced our Corps’ reputation for setting the standard of excellence.

The sense of honor, courage, and patriotism that epitomized those who answered that first call to arms 230 years ago is still indelibly imprinted on our ranks today. In commemorating our anniversary, let us strengthen our ties to the past by paying homage to those who have gone before us. As we honor the sacrifices of our wounded and fallen comrades, our commitment to one another remains unshakable. We take special pride in the actions of the Marines now serving in harm’s way, and rededicate ourselves to the service of our Nation and our Corps.

Happy Birthday Marines, Semper Fidelis, and Keep Attacking!


M. W. Hagee
General, U.S. Marine Corps


Commandant's Birthday Message: 2004
Two hundred and twenty-nine years ago, the Second Continental Congress established a Corps of Marines to fight for a democratic people's independence. Since then countless Marines have raised their hand and sworn to defend our Nation's freedoms and preserve its liberties. This year's anniversary again finds Marines engaged throughout the globe for the same noble purposes. The bravery, heroism, and selflessness of all Marines - wherever they are serving - have added significantly to our rich legacy and measured up to the high standards that have come to epitomize all who wear the Eagle, Globe, and Anchor.

The current battlefields of the Global War on Terror are linked to the storied campaigns of our past by an unbroken tradition of proud and loyal service. At New Providence, Chapultepec, Belleau Wood, Tarawa, Iwo Jima, the Chosin Reservoir, Con Thien, Kuwait, and now in places like Fallujah, Marines have consistently demonstrated a dedication to duty, a commitment to warfighting excellence, and a devotion to each other that has instilled a fierce determination to overcome seemingly impossible challenges. Our warrior ethos is and will continue to be the Corps' hallmark.

The fortitude and sacrifices of Marines and their families have been vital in protecting our Nation from those who would do us harm. Whether preparing and sustaining our agile force or engaged in battle, the esprit de corps, tireless energy, calm courage, and inspired leadership of Marines continue to make a monumental difference in this world. Your unselfish dedication and significant accomplishments - demonstrated repeatedly over this past year in numerous places such as the Anbar province of Iraq, Afghanistan, the Horn of Africa, Haiti, and in the crucial job here at home supporting our deployed forces - are deeply respected and valued by your fellow Americans.

Marines, as we celebrate with friends and families the founding of our beloved Corps, you should take pride in our long history of distinguished service to this great Nation and its citizens. I ask you to remember especially the sacrifices of our fallen and wounded comrades. Finally, rededicate yourselves to taking care of one another and ensuring we remain the finest warfighting organization in the world.

Happy Birthday Marines Semper Fidelis and Keep Attacking!


M. W. Hagee
General, U.S. Marine Corps


Commandant's Birthday Message: 2003
This year we celebrate the 228th anniversary of the founding of our Corps. As always, it is an occasion for remembrance, proud traditions, and joyful camaraderie. The events of the past year have called for great sacrifices from many Marines and their families. While the Global War on Terrorism will continue to demand the best from each of us, it is important that we join with our fellow Marines, families and friends to celebrate our Corps' special culture and unique warrior ethos.

This past year, Marines demonstrated once again that they are the most important entity on any battlefield. Lethal weapons and advanced technologies provide us unique advantages, but educated warriors ultimately determine victory in combat not machines. During Operations IRAQI FREEDOM and ENDURING FREEDOM, our small unit leaders' skills, adaptability and flexibility produced victory on uncertain and at times chaotic battlefields. We proved once again the power of integrated ground-air-logistics teams as well as the importance of every Marine being first and foremost a rifleman.

Our special spirit is evident not only in battle; it is evident in the faithful performance of demanding duties by countless Marines at home and abroad. Every Marine makes a vital contribution to the ability of our Corps to project and sustain credible combat power. Moreover, the willingness and readiness of all Marines to accept and accomplish any mission is central to our success and a hallmark of our warrior ethos. The culture that defines the Marine Corps is nurtured by our traditions. In celebrating our heritage, we strengthen the linkages to a glorious history and recommit ourselves to upholding the standards and values given to us by past generations.

In commemorating our 228th anniversary, remain true to the spirit of the occasion. Reflect on our fallen with deep respect, observe our traditions with justifiable pride, take care of one another, and of course, celebrate those special bonds that exist among United States Marines.

Happy Birthday Marines, Semper Fidelis, and keep attacking!


M. W. Hagee
General, U.S. Marine Corps


Commandant's Birthday Message: 2002
We all know that a powerful convention of teamwork and individual achievement forms the strength of our Corps. We are Marines, first and foremost. Through innovation, trust and mutual respect, we have evolved into an adaptive and flexible fighting force ideally suited for 21st Century challenges. Though the character of war continually changes, we understand that the nature of ware is timeless: that the ultimate arbiter of battle is the human will. We recognize this, and we embrace the values that strengthen our will and define our character. For two hundred and twenty-seven years, Marines and their families have dedicated themselves to the cause of the defense of freedom. Our accomplishments adorn the masthead of the Battle Color of the Marine Corps for all to admire, and they reflect the importance of the legacy we inherit and willingly accept.

Through shared experience and success in battle, we distinguish ourselves by selfless service, in a sense, we are a fraternity of sacrifice. As stewards our rich heritage, we continually reflect upon the generations of marines who, in their time, faithfully answered our country's call. In their example we will find the strength and inspiration necessary to meet the coming challenges. We celebrate this connection with our history, yet we remain focused on the challenges our future. We have an important dual responsibility; to remain ready for today, while transforming our capabilities to meet the challenges of tomorrow.

We find profoundly gratifying, our life-long pride of association with fellow Marines- active, reserve, veteran and civilian?and the knowledge that we contribute daily to securing our Nation's freedom.

I encourage all Marines to celebrate the camaraderie, enrichment, and fulfillment of service with men and women subordinated to a greater cause; preparing for an exciting future and extending the legacy of our great Corps.

Happy Birthday Marines!

Semper Fidelis,

JAMES L. JONES
General, U.S. Marine Corps


Commandant's Birthday Message: 2001
As we commemorate the 226th anniversary of the founding of our Corps, Marines everywhere can take pride in their contributions to our great nation. We are a Corps born of an act of Congress, consecrated in sacrifice, steeped in tradition, and tested in battle. Our earned legacy is filled with the names of many great Marines: Lejeune, Vandegrift, Puller... Butler, Bestwick, Daly -- who fill the annals of our lineage with their inspired acts of vision and gallantry.

Heroic actions on the battlefield are a hallmark of our legacy. Equally compelling are the countless heroic deeds of many other Marines who exemplify the virtue of placing the needs of others above their own. Whether it be a Marine saving an Okinawan child from drowning, or pulling people from a burning wreck, or a family extending itself to provide a safe, nurturing home for disadvantaged children, our lives are indeed full of heroism. Today we celebrate these deeds, not as exploits, but as contributions to the greater good -- circumstances where Marines take care of not just their own, but reach out to care for others.

A lone Marine standing vigil on a dark night in Kosovo; a Marine Reservist serving as a firefighter or police officer who responds to an emergency in his community; a civilian Marine working alongside his counterparts in uniform who shares the perils and realities of a terrorist attack; and a committed spouse who finds the time to serve as an advocate for family programs in addition to making a home and supporting the family -- all are among the heroes of all generations. We are indebted to them for their example of strength and their presence of character. They embrace our core values and live them to the fullest. They inspire us to do the same. We admire and appreciate their example as we celebrate the birth of our Corps and our rich heritage. As our motto enjoins us, let us always be faithful, to our God, our country, our Corps and to our families. Let us also resolve to be always faithful to those Marines who have bestowed upon us our proud legacy of sacrifice, courage, and victory against any foe.

To all Marines, past and present, who uphold the finest traditions of our Eagle, Globe, and Anchor, Happy Birthday.

Semper Fidelis,

JAMES L. JONES
General, U.S. Marine Corps

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