Lt. Gen. Joseph Osterman, commanding general of the I Marine Expeditionary Force, discusses top priorities for the task force, and why maintaining the human element is important for the MEF mission.
The I Marine Expeditionary Force is one of the largest task forces in the Marine Corps. The MEF encompasses three combat elements and several units. Lt. Gen. Joseph Osterman, commanding general of I Marine Expeditionary Force, emphasized that the human element is key for accomplishing the MEF mission, and separates U.S. Marines from their counterparts. “The most lethal and powerful tool on the battlefield is the Marine rifleman. I use that as a descriptor for all Marine activity. It is really the human element that is so incredibly important. That’s really where we differ. We have young men and women that we can empower with decision-making. Give them commander’s intent, give them an end state, and they will make decisions in a decentralized fashion. While most of our adversaries have a very centralized command and control requirement,” Osterman said. “I would say broader from that, is some of the advancements in the multi domain fight. How do we get after the non-kinetics? Things like cyber, electronic warfare, information operations, those kinds of things. We have a toehold in that, and we’re expanding rapidly into it, but that really is a critical component of our combined arms fight that we need to be ready to do.”