Camp Pendleton, CA - Officials from 1st Marine Division announced on Tuesday that they would be making alterations to the unit's famous blue diamond emblem. The surprising move comes after a string of recent national controversies involving Marine personnel and their misconduct in Afghanistan. Division leadership decided it was best to combat the increasing negative press with a symbol of change.
“As we all know, First Marine Division’s official motto is ‘No better friend, no worse enemy,’" said spokesman 1st Lt. Alex Lim during a news conference. “But we want to put more emphasis on the ‘better friend’ part.”
The division’s logo—famous for its blue diamond, red number one, and branded Guadalcanal—will be replacing the name of one of America’s most famous battles with a less threatening noun: Utopia. It will also have a more pleasant background instead of the dark and intimidating blue color of years past.
“We just wanted to let the world know that while our organization may primarily deal in warfare, that egalitarian society we all dream of is still within our grasp and can be won by the gentle and loving hearts of the Marines in this division,” added Lim. “By replacing the name of a bygone battle with our hope for the future, we can show the world that we truly are your best friends forever.”
The announcement has been well received by many of the division’s Marines.
PFC Andrew Seibert, who checked in two days ago, said, “I’m very pleased with this decision. The days of puppy throwing, Nazi
1st Marine Division's old and highly intimidating logo
flagging, and peeing on other human beings are over. Those weren’t the values I was taught in my Marine Corps upbringing at boot camp and SOI. That was the old Corps. We’re here to be citizens of the new Corps, and I for one am proud to be new Corps.”
But not all Marines were happy with this change.General James Mattis, the former 1st MarDiv leader and outgoing CENTCOM Commander, said: “This is absolute bullshit. I think I'll call up Al Gray so we can drink like a couple of Lance Corporals and bitch about it for a couple of hours."
Due to the ever-changing dynamics of the Afghanistan conflict, many Marine Corps insiders say that there will be—and already is—a number of smaller units experimenting with logo and motto changes.It’s already been reported that 1st Reconnaissance Battalion is looking into changing their official motto from “Swift, Silent, Deadly,” to “Happy, Polite, Friendly.”
Indeed, it seems the precedent being set by the leadership of 1st Marine Division could start a string of name changes from different chains-of-command.
When asked if these name changes could adversely affect the morale or combat effectiveness of Marines, Lim shot back, “Absolutely not. In fact, we’re certain that a Marine handing out hugs and smiles can do a lot more for the world than one handing out an archaic notion of violence.”