Marine Corps Mustang

Marine Mustang
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Marine Corps Mustang

No, not the automobile, Ford Mustang, I’m talking about the Marine Corps Mustang.

This one has really blown up in the past few days, and if you haven’t heard, here is the scoop.

Marine Veteran Corporal Ivan Snook, took to Twitter or X for all of you cool kids out there, and ran his mouth about Mustangs. 

Ivan Snook is a former Marine Corps 0311 Rifleman. He did at least one tour in Fallujah, with 1st Recon Bn. He later educated himself, at Columbia University with critical theory, psychoanalytic theory, military and Ukrainian politics.  Ivan completed his Masters in 2022. He has his bachelor’s degree in history from Seattle University. 

A Mustang is a Marine Corps Officer who was prior enlisted and then took the path to become an officer (known as a Mustang).

Before I go into the tweets, I’m going to go out on a limb and say that I bet Mr. Snook tried to go the Mustang route and likely couldn’t get the recommendations needed to start the process. If I recall correctly, you need a recommendation that will support your application. But I have no clue about Mr. Snook, nor do I really care. I’m also not sure why in the hell he thought he should open his damn mouth about something that he has no clue on. 

Mr. Snook, stated in tweets that “The military should stop giving commissions to any enlisted. Mustangs erode the esteem, legitimacy and distinct culture of the officer corps like merchants marrying into the aristocracy. Nevertheless, we are intent on lowering the standards and reducing military service to being ‘just a job’ asap.“.

The military should stop giving commissions to any enlisted. Mustangs erode the esteem, legitimacy and distinct culture of the officer corps like merchants marrying into the aristocracy. Nevertheless, we are intent on lowering the standards and reducing military service to being 'just a job' asap.
The military should stop giving commissions to any enlisted. Mustangs erode the esteem, legitimacy and distinct culture of the officer corps like merchants marrying into the aristocracy. Nevertheless, we are intent on lowering the standards and reducing military service to being 'just a job' asap.

Now I want to state that every single Marine Mustang that I ever met, were usually much better officers than the regular commissioned officers. However, I have worked with some Marines who stated that their OIC, who was a Mustang, had a huge chip on his shoulder and was looking to cause trouble with anyone that gave him shit when he was enlisted.

The Mustang officer brings so much to the table, to include experience for one. I haven’t met a regular commissioned Lt that wasn’t 100% clueless about things like Land Navigation or how to lead for that matter. Just because you decided to throw money into a higher education, doesn’t make you intelligent, nor does it have any basis on how good of a leader you will be.

I had a Captain once who was the classic Marine officer, this dumbass couldn’t read a compass, refused to ask for help and was a shitty leader. 

As a leader, you should NEVER ask those under you to do anything that you are not willing to do. My last SgtMaj, always asked to have a shitter left for him to clean when we did the field day of the hanger (yep, I was in the wing for three years). He would normally come into the head, during field day and actually clean a shitter almost every week. Why did he do that, you ask? He was leading from the top and showing his Marines that he isn’t better than they are. I have never worked for an officer that did anything like that. In fact, the Captain that I was talking about earlier, almost seemed to intentionally do stupid stuff that would make us all hate working for him. 

As I worked in Intel my entire Marine Corps career and I had the distinction of working with some very intelligent Marines. Back in the day, you had to have a 120 GT or higher to get selected for any of the Intel MOSs.

The first video is from NickyMGTV, who is Nick who is a Navy Corpman (MN1). Nick pretty much focuses on military content for his YouTube Channel. And as an FMF Corpsman, he is respected by us Marines.

The next video is from Angy Cops, who is a New York Army National Guard drill instructor Richard Hy. Angry Cops pretty much focuses on military content.

For those that are trying to follow along and are not sure why a Mustang usually makes a better officer. When you get out of boot camp (enlisted), you go to the School of Infantry, regardless of your MOS because every Marine is a rifleman first. Then you go to your MOS school, followed by your first duty station.

When you get to your first duty station, you will most certainly be one of the lowest ranking Marines in the unit, which means you get to do the shit jobs, like field day the head (restroom). As you slowly pick up rank, you will naturally have more junior Marines under you, meaning you should get less of the shit duties (unless you are a shit bird).

When you pick up Corporal (E-4) you go to Corporal’s Course (the Corps split up resident NCO School, into resident Corporal’s Course and resident Sergeant’s Course). If you decide that you want to be an officer, by the time you pin on your first shiny collar decoration (officer rank), you already have 4 or more years of experience under your belt, both as a janitor as well as in your MOS and maybe even combat. 

As a Lt, you have a compass in your hand, and you already know how to use it and can navigate your ass off. You pick up an M-4 and you already know how to use it as you spent several years in the sandbox already. See where I’m going here, you have the experience. And you also know what it was like being shit on as a LCpl and below, so you often try to make sure that your Marines are not treated like that if it can be avoided.

For the record here are a few Marines that were/are Mustangs

Former CMC General Alfred M. Gray Jr. – Enlisted in 1950, attained the rank of Sgt before he was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant. He retired after he served as the 29th Commandant of the United States Marine Corps.

Lt. General Lewis B Puller “Chesty” – Chesty enlisted in the Marine Corps in 1918. Chesty is a hero in the Marine Corps history books, he retired from the Marine Corps with the rank of Lt General.

General James N. Mattis – Most modern-day Marines know who General ‘Mad Dog’ Mattis is. Not only was he a very prominent Marine, but he also served as the 26th United States Secretary of Defense under President Trump.

Captain Dale A. Dye – He enlisted in the Marine Corps in 1964 and retired as a Captain. Dale is well known for being a Hollywood technical advisor through his company “Warriors, Inc.”.  Capt. Dye has offered his expertise to hundreds of movies to include Band of Brothers and The Pacific. He is also an author and an actor in movies like ‘Platoon’, ‘Born on the Fourth of July’, ‘JFK’ and ‘Saving Private Ryan’.

Colonel Wesley L. Fox – Wesley enlisted in the Marine Corps in 1950 and after being wounded in action in Korea, he served as a Drill Instructor at MCRD San Diego. He reached the rank of First Sergeant before being commissioned as a 2nd Lt. He is a recipient of the Medal of Honor for his heroic actions in Vietnam. He retired in 1993 at the rank of Colonel.

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Average Joe

Welcome to the Average Joe Weekly blog. This is basically my place on the web where I can help spread some of the knowledge that I have accumulated over the years. I served 10+ years in the Marine Corps on Active Duty, but that was some 25 years ago.

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  • Average Joe

    Welcome to the Average Joe Weekly blog. This is basically my place on the web where I can help spread some of the knowledge that I have accumulated over the years. I served 10+ years in the Marine Corps on Active Duty, but that was some 25 years ago.

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By Average Joe

Welcome to the Average Joe Weekly blog. This is basically my place on the web where I can help spread some of the knowledge that I have accumulated over the years. I served 10+ years in the Marine Corps on Active Duty, but that was some 25 years ago.

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