The Secretary of Defense approved a joint recommendation by U.S. Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) and the Marine Corps to create a Marine special operations command as a component of USSOCOM.
The Marine Special Operations Command (MARSOC) will enhance Marine Corps and USSOCOM interoperability and provide USSOCOM greater flexibility and increased capability to fight the war on terrorism.
The MARSOC will be organized in three subordinate elements the Marine Special Operations Regiment, the Foreign Military Training Unit and the Marine Special Operations Support Group with an authorized strength of approximately 2,600 Marines. While an activation date for the new command has not been determined, Marine Brig. Gen. Dennis J. Hejlik has been selected as its first commander.
The mission of the MARSOC headquarters will be to organize, man, train and equip Marine Special Operations Forces. The commands subordinate units will provide training to foreign military units and perform specific special operations missions. The command will also have the capability to provide intelligence, logistics and fire support coordination to joint special operation task forces.
MARSOC headquarters, the Foreign Military Training Unit and the Marine Special Operations Support Group will be stationed at Camp Lejeune, N.C. The Marine Special Operations Regiment will also be headquartered at Camp Lejeune with an additional element stationed at Camp Pendleton, Calif.