Friday, August 30, 2013


US Officials: Navy Boosts Carrier Presence In Gulf


Published: August 29, 2013
Washinton — U.S. officials say the Navy is beefing up its presence in the Persian Gulf region, increasing the number of aircraft carriers from one to two. The USS Truman has arrived in the Arabian Sea and was scheduled to take the place of the USS Nimitz, which was supposed to head home. The Navy has ordered the Nimitz, which is in the Indian Ocean, to stay for now. U.S. officials describe the decision as prudent planning and say it doesn't suggest the carrier would play a role in any possible strikes in Syria. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss ship movements publicly. The U.S. had kept two carriers in the region, but budget cuts in February forced officials to cut that to one.


EDITOR'S NOTE: The AP story above is about a carrier deployment that was planned before the sixth fleet called for a carrier task force. The United States presently has 10 carriers in commission and two in reserve. Earlier defense estimates before the on going budget crisis estimated that in all, to fulfill all of our commitments, while not working crews into the dirt, or equipment to failure the United States needed a compliment of at least 13 carrier tasks groups. Of course now it is politically correct to fail to articulate the reality of this need.  It is not career enhanceive to articulate what we are going to tell you. Officially we have 10 carriers and two in reserve. The two in reserve however are not commissioned and are on preserved cold iron, they can not be brought back on line in anything like short order. Of the ten remaining ships one is undergoing repair, and the rest shift the burdens around often delaying necessary maintenance and repair. The two we now need in the Persian Gulf are there to protect our oil routes , help contain Iran, assist when possible in combating Somali piracy, and reassure our allies. The carrier task force we need in the Med for a Syrian Intervention has to come out of hide, there will be a price to pay in deferred maintenance, and personnel turn over when this is over. As the sequestration non budget continues certain legislation requires across the board defense cuts. What we really need right now is more carriers but our own divided Congress assures that we can not prioritize and fund what we need. We have no immediate need for tank divisions right now, but we could not mothball one to gain what we do need, more carriers. The heart of United States Naval Power has degenerated into a shell game. But with ten commissioned carriers and two in reserve we could probably find the funds to get back up to funding 13 commissioned carriers if we were not artificially obligated to spread the pain of budget cuts evenly across all of the services. Amazingly the constitution obligates our law makers to "maintain a navy", but only gives them permissive authority to "raise armies". A strong constitutional argument can be made that across the board service budget cuts are unconstitutional given the obligation to maintain a navy. But then when has either party worried about the constitution if it was in the way of what they wanted to d? U.S. Navy Air Craft Carrier Task Forces, the big shell game, at some point we're going to come up short.


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