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Letter From the Editor: Closing Out 2019

The end of 2019 also marks the end of the inaugural year of the AMCL Log Blog. This year we published 23 articles on a variety of topics, ranging from advice, to historic lessons, to the future of Marine Corps logistics. We also added two editors to the staff, solidified submission guidelines, and even established an official email account ( 2019 has been a big year.

Before signing off on 2019, we wanted to do a quick recap of some of the articles posted by AMCL members over the course of the year.

One of the most important parts of AMCL is sharing logistics lessons learned. In that vein, Lieutenant Colonel Kirk Spangenberg started 2019 off with A Message for Newly Minted Logisticians, Major Jason Fincher discussed how he leveraged TLCM-OST to improve readiness at the unit level, and Major Samy Cano showed how currently fielded tools can help fill capability gaps.

Major Leo Spaeder’s thoughtful post on Fixing the Expeditionary Logistics Instructor Program provided such critical feedback that it generated an almost immediate response from Marine Corps leadership. Major Spaeder ultimately met with the Commanding Officer of the Marine Corps Logistics Operations Group to discuss planned changes to the course.

The AMCL Log Blog’s most viewed articles were two posts by Mr. Mark Wlaschin, in which he discussed logistics in the context of two commercial events: the failures of the Fyre Festival and the consistent year-after-year successes of Burning Man. Does over 8,000 views count as viral?

AMCL members also spent time writing about the future of Marine Corps logistics. Lieutenant Colonel Aaron Angell issued a call for ideas in support of the Commandant’s Planning Guidance, especially to support the new EABO concept. Majors Matthew Schultz and Andrew Harkins discussed logistics modernization in their article Planning at the Speed of Relevance: Leveraging Technology to Sustain the 21st Century Warfighter, while Major Tim Fretwell broached the topic of how logistics can successfully support the CPG.

While this year was a strong start to the Log Blog, AMCL members also had their writing included in a variety of other publications. The Marine Corps Gazette published Distributed Operational Logistics by Major Fincher, Flattened Logistics by Major Spaeder, and Data Driven Logistics, authored by several AMCL members. Major Spaeder also published two articles in War on the Rocks that generated quite a bit of buzz, Sir, Who Am I? An Open Letter to the Incoming Commandant of the Marine Corps and Beyond Grunts and Pilots: Senior Leader Talent Management in the Marine Corps. Captain Elle Ekman published an op-ed in the New York Times entitled Here’s One Reason the US Military Can’t Fix Its Own Equipment, which was picked up and discussed by Gizmodo, Extreme Tech, and a number of other communities interested in right to repair restrictions.

As we start the next year, the Log Blog wants to continue to amplify the voice of everyone in the logistics community. If you have ideas, critical feedback, or observations about logistics in the Marine Corps, send us your articles. Or if you need help structuring an argument, editing your writing to submit to other publications, or have a question regarding AMCL, let us know and we would be happy to help. We have many new ideas for 2020, so stay tuned. Have a great New Year!

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