Commandant Gen. Robert B. Neller announced the new rifle squad configuration

Marine Corps Commandant Robert B. Neller announced major changes to ground combat units, including the shift from a 13-man rifle squad to a 12-man squad and the addition of a squad systems operator along with transformations in the gear Marines carry. Read about it below if you´re into the USMC life.

ARLINGTON, Va. ― The Marine Corps rifle squad has lost a member but will gain a suite of capabilities in a servicewide initiative to bring powerful tools from information to precision fires to the lowest echelons of combat.

Commandant Robert B. Neller told a crowd of hundreds at the Marine Corps Association and Foundation Annual Ground Awards Dinner on Thursday that the new configuration would consist of three, three-Marine fire teams and a command element of three ― a squad leader, assistant squad leader and squad systems operator.

The systems operator will be the most tech-capable Marine in the formation, Neller said. Rather than create a new Military Occupational Specialty, the systems operator will come from the infantry ranks.

And all squad members will carry the M27 Infantry Automatic Rifle.

Each squad will have a squad designated marksman, which is set to be the M38, an accurized version of the M27. The foundational formation of the infantry will also carry a common handheld tablet, multi-channel radio and replace M203 grenade launchers with the M320 grenade launcher.

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