The Marine Corps' historic recruiting slogan "The Few, The Proud" is going on hiatus but it's not going away, a top recruiting official said.


New Marine Corps recruiting commercials set to air next month will not include any tagline at all, said Lt. Col. John Caldwell, a spokesman for Marine Corps Recruiting Command. Instead, they will end with the word "Marines" and the Corps' eagle, globe and anchor emblem.

Caldwell stressed that "The Few, The Proud" remains part of the Marine Corps' lexicon and is not going away.

"'The Few, The Proud' has not and will not be retired indefinitely," Caldwell told Marine Corps Times on Thursday.

The Marine Corps' decision to end recruiting commercials with the Corps' name and emblem reflect a wider trend in advertising, he said.

"Nike, a lot of their advertisements now end with the swoosh – or the swoosh and the word 'Nike' – but the tagline 'Just Do It' or something like that isn't there," Caldwell said. "A lot of advertisers … punctuate their advertising products with their brand. That's effectively what these new TV ads you're going to see do. They end with our brand."

The new commercials will focus on three themes: Making Marines, winning battles and returning quality citizens, he said.

"Those chapters you will see fleshed out in these advertisements with everything framed through the context of a fight – a fight that we intend to win, because that is what Marines do," Caldwell said.

The Marines may replace the service's iconic recruiting slogan.


Caldwell told Marine Corps Times in September that the upcoming recruiting advertisements may not include "The Few, The Proud" slogan because "it doesn't say anything about what we do or why we exist."

The Marine Corps has used "The Few, The Proud" as a recruiting slogan since 1977, but the Corps has also used others since then such as "We're Looking for a Few Good Men."

Caldwell has stressed that the replacing "The Few, The Proud" was never the focus of the new advertising campaign.

"The conversation was not about the fate of 'The Few, The Proud,' but rather: What is an appropriate way to punctuate this advertisement," Caldwell said. "Where do you end the narrative?"

Although the slogan will not be part of the upcoming commercials, it still belongs to the Marine Corps and it could be used with other recruiting materials, he said.

"'The Few, The Proud' still belongs to the Marines, along with all previous taglines used, Caldwell said. "It will be used when and where needed and most appropriate."