Marine Corps Seeks Award For First Black Marines

The top leader of the Marine Corps wants the first black Marines to be awarded the Congressional Gold Medal of Honor.

Commandant Gen. James Amos told hundreds of Marine Corps officers at the National Naval Officers Association meeting in San Diego on Tuesday that it is time for Congress to honor the group known as the Montford Point Marines.

About 20,000 black Marines trained at Montford Point in North Carolina in the 1940s after President Franklin D. Roosevelt integrated the Marine Corps.

Amos says his goal is to cement their role in the Marine Corps' 235-year history.

His efforts are part of a broader goal in diversifying the military's smallest branch. Amos says only 5 percent of officers are black and that needs to increase.

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  • by So then... on Aug 3, 2011 at 01:37 PM
    We need to honor the first Hispanic soldiers, the first Asian soldiers, the first Eskimo soldiers, etc....Lets be fair now! (BTW, forget about honoring the first white soldiers)
  • by truth on Aug 3, 2011 at 11:20 AM
    That's Sad it's 2012 & we still have people hating on these individuals who risked there life for our freedom. This is not a group of black marines screaming for an award! This is the Top Leader asking that these men be recognized. And we wonder why this nation is screwed up!
    • reply
      by Earl on Aug 3, 2011 at 12:46 PM in reply to truth
      This is the Top Leader asking that these men be recognized. That is all good Black Marines should be recognized , but any race who gets the MOH you have to earn it! If a Black Marine wants to get the MOH he or she has to do something heroic to earn it. It is not a entitlement Medal!. Most MOH's are awarded posthumously. That is a heck of a sacrifice to get the MOH
    • reply
      by Bearslayer on Aug 3, 2011 at 07:06 PM in reply to truth
      Truth . listen to the truth. The truth is that no one is " hating these individuals who risked (their lives) for our freedom" But The MOH is ( as previously stated) "Conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his or her life above and beyond the call of duty while engaged in an action against any enemy of the United States" If it is given just for enlisting it really cheapens the honor. If it is given for enlisting , then why not for the first 20,000 short men , the first 20,000 southerners, the first 20,000 etc, etc. I agree that perhaps the recruit curriculum would be a great place to commemorate these fine Marines, however I must state that awarding the Medal Of Honor is over the top.
  • by Wolfgang Location: Chocowinity,NC on Aug 3, 2011 at 07:45 AM
    Being in the US Army years ago if I remember right did not you have to do something like very,very ' Heroic ' to get awared the Medal Of Honor , and race had nothing to do with it? "Conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his or her life above and beyond the call of duty while engaged in an action against any enemy of the United States" Sad but many awarded the MOH as of a posthumous award are given to next of kin, by the President of the United States, on behalf of the Congress - " You don’t know the horrible aspects of war. I’ve been through two wars and I know. I’ve seen cities and homes in ashes. I’ve seen thousands of men lying on the ground, their dead faces looking up at the skies. I tell you, war is Hell! " General William Tecumseh Sherman
  • by Anonymous on Aug 3, 2011 at 06:06 AM
    Why not honor them with a special decoration for units or a museum? This isn't what the Medal of Honor is for. I think they deserve a special place in Marine history, but giving them a Medal of Honor will not be the way to do it.
  • by Bearslayer Location: Choco on Aug 3, 2011 at 05:43 AM
    As SSgt Stuck ( my DI on Parris Island 1973 )said " There are no Black Marines , there are no White Marines all of My Marines are Green"OOOOOOOOOOOOOOORRRRAAAAHHHHHH
  • by Retired Col, USMC Location: Greenville on Aug 3, 2011 at 05:42 AM
    The qualifications to become a commissioned officier in the USMC are held a a high standard for a reason. If you don't measure up to that standard, then you are not qualified. The last thing that my Corps needs is a quota system or afferimitive action program to dilute the quality of its officer corps. If blacks or any other minority group want to serve, then apply and meet the requirements. Not to hard to understand this, is it?
  • by Pirateman on Aug 3, 2011 at 05:40 AM
    This would be a DISHONOR to all Medal of Honor awardees! The Medal of Honor is for "conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his or her life above and beyond the call of duty while engaged in an action against an enemy of the United States". How the heck does extra melanin and color of skin pigment fall into that definition? When I was in the Corps we were required to learn the history of our beloved Corps. The Commandant may order that this episode of the Corps' history, their sacrifices and their contributions be in that curriculum when it is taught to future Marines. That decision would suffice. This is a bad leadership decision.
  • by Jane Location: Washington on Aug 3, 2011 at 04:40 AM
    Very. very well said Harold. These men fought for the freedom of their country...not because they were black. The medal in question is awarded for a particular act - not color of the skin.
  • by Harold Location: NC on Aug 3, 2011 at 03:59 AM
    Honor them for their service and not the color of their skin. Don't diversify the Marine Corps, unify them. I support ALL of the Marines for their willingness to serve irregardless of skin color.
  • by great on Aug 3, 2011 at 03:13 AM
    awesome.....more affirmative action. forget the best man for the job
    • reply
      by Anon on Aug 3, 2011 at 05:17 AM in reply to great
      Not to mention lives are at stake.

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