"And besides, we know how former Marines act.
Evans Carlson was the kind of eccentric that abounds in U.S. military history. In the late 1930s, he was serving with the Marines in Tientsin, China, when he took the opportunity to visit Mao and his 8th Route Army at Yenan. Carlson was so overwhelmed by the experiencethe comradeship, the ideology, the excitement of being part of a cause that he became for all practical purposes a convinced Maoist.
Which didn't prevent him from remaining a Marine. Taking some of the lessons he'd learned (including the Maoist slogan " gung ho" "work together"), Carlson applied them to Marine Corps tactics and organization. At the outbreak of World War II he convinced his superiors to allow him to form a pair of Raider battalions , units that based their tactics in large part on Mao's theory of guerilla warfare. After a half-successful raid on the Japanese-held island of Makin, Carlson led a dramatic month-long raid behind enemy lines on Guadalcanal, clearly demonstrating the potential of the raider concept. Though the Raider battalions never quite lived up to Carlson's billing, they provided valuable service and acted as a basis for postwar Marine practice in units such as Force Recon.
Carlson remained in the Marine Corps, and in the early 50s, came to the attention of one particular ex-Marine, Sen. Joe McCarthy. Always eager to produce an actual communist to back up his rhetoric (most active communists had already been bagged by the time he appeared), McCarthy planned to drag Carlson before his committee and expose him as a follower of the evil Mao tse-Tung, whose troops were even then fighting UN forces in Korea.
At least, that was what he planned until a high-ranking Marine officer stalked into his congressional office and explained to the senator that once a Marine, always a Marine, and that Marines, no matter what the circumstances, never betray their brothers in arms.
McCarthy replied that he understood. At which point, legend insists, the officer said, "And besides, man, this is Carlson! You get him riled, he will f***ing kill you!"
Joe McCarthy was, at best, a vulgar, cheap opportunist. But he understood where at least one line was drawn: Marines did not turn on other Marines.
It has taken over half a century, but the Democrats have achieved a historic landmark. They have produced a politician beneath the standards of Joe McCarthy. A man who does not know where the line is drawn. Who will not allow justice to take its course. A man who will devour his own for the purposes of saving his superannuated political career.
This is the point where you're supposed to repeat the words of Joseph N. Welch at the Army-McCarthy hearings, words that have come down as branding an entire epoch.
"Have you no sense of decency? At long last, sir
But I think we can let that pass this time."
Ret BGen Evans F. Carlson USMCR died in 1947, after running for public office in California on the Communist Party ticket.
I have seen writings before regarding Joe McCarthy having attacked Col Carlson, but I never have seen this together with a proper reference as to a verifiable source. Strange that it does not mention that Carlson died several years prior to such hearings; of course, McCarthy may have not been aware of Carlson's death.
I have searched for such a reference re McCarthy/Carlson many times to no avail. In lieu of such a hard reference and for the time being, I will use this webpage source as a temporary reference and post this info to Gunny G's Globe and Anchor Sites & Forums.
R.W. "Dick" Gaines
GnySgt USMC (Ret.)
1952 (Plt #437)--'72
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