The counterinsurgency-intensive war in Afghanistan, and until recently in Iraq, is being principally fought on the ground by our brothers and sisters in the Army and Marine Corps. With some notable exceptions (SEALs, explosive-ordnance-disposal personnel, and Seabees), naval officers are mostly absent from the fight. The Navy risks creating a generation of surface warfare officers (SWOs), submariners, and aviators without the kind of combat experience and knowledge necessary to compete with battle-hardened peers from other services for challenging joint assignments.
Nobody Asked Me, But. . .Put Naval Officers on the Ground
By Lieutenant Chris Deluzio, U.S. Navy