The Marine Corps has announced it will assign selected personnel to the U.S. Special Operations Command (USSO-Com). A purported result would be "a major Marine organization within special operations, on a par with the Navy's Sea, Air, and Land (SEAL) teams or the Army's Special Forces," with traditional special forces missions. As a Marine who began his career as a reconnaissance platoon leader, I will hope for the best while fearing the worst.
The Marine Corps has a history of flirting with special operations forces. Marine Raider battalions in World War II paralleled establishment of the Office of Strategic Services (OSS), forerunner to Army Special Forces (and the Central Intelligence Agency), Navy Underwater Demolition Teams, and Army Rangers. Marines served with the OSS, and the Raiders performed well during their brief lives. That the Marine Raider experience was short lived, however, may offer a clue as to the sustainability of the current initiative.