Marine Corps Forces Central Command, which is in charge of the service's operations in an increasingly unstable Middle East currently roiled by last month's surprise Hamas attack on Israel, announced Wednesday that it would be canceling its annual Marine Corps ball due to “unforeseen operational commitments and the nature of our current mission.”
A spokesperson for the command, also known as MARCENT, told Military.com after the announcement that the cancellation of the ball was a “prudent measure,” given the situation unfolding out of Israel.
The service currently has a rapid response force in the region, the 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit, or 26th MEU. As of last month, that unit had not been tasked with a specific mission, and the MARCENT spokesperson, Capt. Joe Wright, said that the command's posture in the Middle East has not changed.
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“Regretfully and with a strong sense of duty, I write to inform you of a decision that I had to make regarding the Marine Corps 248th Ball, scheduled for 16 November 2023,” Maj. Gen. Christopher McPhillips, the commander of MARCENT, wrote Wednesday.
“Due to unforeseen operation commitments and the nature of our current mission, it is with great regret that we must cancel this year's event,” he said.
The MARCENT X account, on the social media site formerly called Twitter,…