Posts Tagged Robert-Claypool

Early Historical Overview of the Naval War College

By Robert Claypool

The United States Naval War College holds distinction as the oldest continuing institution of its type in the world. Located in Newport, Rhode Island, the Naval War College was established in 1884 to provide professional study programs for naval officers. The College took shape according to the vision and ideals of its founder, Admiral Stephen B. Luce, who noticed the lack of higher education and adequate training in key professional areas for Navy personnel.

Before the Naval War College, education and training in the United States Navy revolved around the technology and science of weaponry; no institution provided in-depth study of the topic of war itself. The Naval War College was the first to center on the study of how wars begin and end, how they are fought, and what measures can be taken to prevent them. In designing the original curriculum for the College, Admiral Luce established a fundamental approach to building a sociopolitical understanding of war and its various mechanisms. The Naval War College taught courses concerning government management, finance, international relations, grand strategy, and campaign tactics. Luce added war-gaming to the college’s curriculum as an analytical tool for linking political and military issues with advancing naval technology. Along with the College’s curriculum, Admiral Luce decided to include civilian academics on the faculty, a practice that endures today.

The College began accepting students from foreign navies in 1894, beginning the current variety of international programs presently available through the school. The Naval War College contributed strongly to operational naval doctrine in the 20th century and to a movement that brought about the chief of naval operations position in 1915. Adding a chief of naval operations with a ground-based staff provided a level of uniform professionalism not previously available.

About the Author

Robert Claypool is a retired United States Marine Corps Colonel and alumnus of the Naval War College.


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Colonel Robert Claypool on Joining the Marines

Becoming a Marine invariably proves grueling and trying, but also one of the most rewarding experiences. Most recruits begin training either in South Carolina at the branch’s boot camp on Parris Island or at the Marine Corps Recruit Depot in San Diego. Training requires 12 weeks and an unusual level of commitment and athleticism. In fact, many claim that Marine boot camp is more difficult than those of other American armed services and most international ones. The Drill Instructors instill Marine values in recruits while testing and developing individual skills. Virtually all trainees initially hate their drill instructors, which serves as the basis for developing lifelong relationships. Eventually, Marines come to view their Drill Instructors with the utmost respect, grateful for the growth they underwent in only a few months. Unlike other military branches, Marines train in a number of different fields such as marksmanship, regardless of their eventual position. Marine doctrine holds that all members of the branch must possess advanced rifle skills (every Marine a rifleman).



The Evolution of Amphibious Doctrine, So Essential to Marine Corps Activity posted by

Recruits should be in good physical condition before they even enlist with the Marine Corps. Shortly after arriving at boot camp they must meet this minimum requirement: men must run 1.5 miles in less than 13 minutes, do 44 crunches in a row, and perform at least two full pull-ups. Women have 15 minutes for the run and may opt for a 12-second flexed-arm hang in lieu of pull-ups. Those unable to meet these cut-offs must enroll in remedial training, which quickly gets recruits into the physical condition necessary for training. After boot camp, Marines enjoy a ten-day leave before pursuing additional training, which depends on their specific career track. Many tracks have prerequisites or restrictions that Marines should thoroughly research before enlisting. After graduation from these programs, Marines travel to a specific base or airfield. While the branch weighs personal preferences in these decisions, the final assignment ultimately depends on the Corps’ needs.


Individuals ultimately aiming to become officers may apply directly to the Officer Candidates School, which provides an officer’s commission upon completion of the challenging program. Other may want to look into the Naval Academy, which provides a four-year traditional undergraduate program coupled with intensive training. Graduates may join the Marine Corps as officers.


About the Author


With a background in strategic and operational planning, resource management, and defense acquisition, Colonel Robert Claypool acts as Director of Marine Aviation Weapons Systems Requirements. In this role, he advises other senior executives while managing the aircraft and aviation weapons systems of the United States Marine Corps. Colonel Robert Claypool graduated from the Naval Academy with a degree in engineering and subsequently earned a Master of Arts in National Security and Strategic Studies from the United States Naval War College.

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