Photo Information

AR RAMADI, Iraq (December 7, 2005) - General Michael Hagee, commandant of the Marine Corps, shakes hands with Lt. Col. Roger Turner, commanding officer of 3rd Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment at Hurricane Point Dec. 7. Photo by Cpl. Shane Suzuki

Photo by Cpl. Shane Suzuki

Commandant makes trip to speak with Marines of 3/7

7 Dec 2005 | Cpl. Shane Suzuki

During a recent trip through western Iraq, the Commandant of the Marine Corps made a stop to visit the Marines of 3rd Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment, serving at Camp Hurricane Point in support of operations here, Dec. 7. During the visit, Gen. Michael Hagee spoke with the different units stationed here and answered the Marines’ questions about equipment, ammunition and future operations.“This area is really the center of gravity for this country,” said Hagee. “We need to be successful in this region and the Marines here are already setting a very high standard. Today’s war is very demanding, in fact I think today’s war is more demanding than previous efforts. We can be on one block handing out humanitarian supplies, the next block clearing a house of suspected insurgents and by the third block be engaged in hand to hand combat.”According to Hagee, maintaining and expanding the resources available for the stability operations continuing in Iraq and Afghanistan while keeping the rest of the Marine Corps sharp and ready to handle any problem that may arise are two of the biggest challenges facing today’s leadership.“Right now, we are conducting a very demanding security and stability operation here, and our job is to ensure that every Marine on the ground is ready with the best equipment and training available,” he said. “What we are doing is maintaining the flexibility to do any mission that comes our way, and I think we are succeeding in doing that.”Part of the reason for the emphasis on training and equipment, said Hagee, is that the enemy we are facing here and throughout Iraq is a wily, intelligent enemy who is constantly learning and adapting to the Coalition Force’s tactics. However, this can be combated with constant vigilance and training by the Marines here in the city. “We are up against a very smart enemy,” he said. “The individual who survives has to have the ability to think and learn, and that is why we will ultimately be successful here. We adapt faster and better than they do, and we have the ability to put to use what we learn quickly. By applying the lessons we learn on the battlefield, we will defeat the insurgency and be able to turn this country over to the Iraqi people.”