The Marine Corps on recently activated a two-star command that it hopes will better coordinate its information operations — a goal the Marine commandant laid out in his annual update to his plans for an ambitious overhaul of the Corps.
Maj. Gen. Ryan P. Heritage, already the commander of the Corps’ cyberspace and space commands, will head the newly activated Marine Corps Information Command, according to a Corps news release.
Gen. David Berger, Marine commandant, called for the establishment of the command in his May 2022 update to Force Design 2030. Force Design 2030 is the far-reaching plan to make the Marine Corps more nimble and less detectable, especially in a potential future conflict with China.
A key part of the modernization effort is information, broadly defined, from cyber operations to space reconnaissance to signals intelligence, Berger wrote in his 2022 update.
“We believe that in a conflict with a peer adversary, first moves may be in space and cyber, so we must enable our Stand-in Forces,” expeditionary units and expeditionary forces “to integrate with, and have access to, those capabilities now,” Berger wrote. “We can streamline and simplify much of the coordination burden at the headquarters level if we re-organize and refocus some of our structure.”
The Marine Corps Information Command takes over some units previously assigned to the deputy commandant for information: the Information Operations Center, Cryptologic Office and Cryptologic Support Battalion.
Putting these offices, along with the Corps’ space and cyberspace commands, under the information command means one commander can “leverage the authorities and approvals needed to synchronize global cyber, space, influence, and intelligence effects for the service” and Fleet Marine Force, Maj. Greg Carroll, a Marine Corps spokesman, told Marine Corps Times.
Irene Loewenson is a staff reporter for Marine Corps Times. She joined Military Times as an editorial fellow in August 2022. She is a graduate of Williams College, where she was the editor-in-chief of the student newspaper.