Tag Archives: USS Iwo Jima

Congressman: USS New York to Mayport by December

Congressman: USS New York to Mayport by December

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USS New York (LPD 21) transits in the U.S. 5th Fleet area of responsibility in October. US Navy Photo

USS New York (LPD 21) transits in the U.S. 5th Fleet area of responsibility in October. US Navy Photo

Amphibious warship, USS News York (LPD-21) will be home ported at Naval Station Mayport, Fla. by the end of the year, according to a Wednesday release from a Florida congressman. Read More

Reagan Readied U.S. Warship for '82 Falklands War

Reagan Readied U.S. Warship for ’82 Falklands War

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reagan_and_maggie

President Ronald Reagan and Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher at the White House in 1981 The Reagan Library Archives

While publicly claiming neutrality between Argentina and the U.K. during the 1982 Falklands War, President Ronald Reagan’s administration had developed plans to loan a ship to the Royal Navy if it lost one of its aircraft carriers in the war, former U.S. Secretary of the Navy, John Lehman, told the U.S. Naval Institute on June 26.

Lehman and then Secretary of Defense Caspar Weinberger agreed to support U.K. Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher with the loan of the amphibious warship USS Iwo Jima, he said.

“We agreed that [Weinberger] would tell the President that we planned to handle all these requests routinely without going outside existing Navy channels,” Lehman said in a speech provided to the U.S. Naval Institute he made in Portsmouth, U.K. “We would ‘leave the State Department, except for [Secretary of State Al] Haig, out of it.’”

Reagan approved the request without hesitation and his instructions to Weinberger had been simple, “Give Maggie everything she needs to get on with it,” Lehman said in the speech.

At the time, the Royal Navy had deployed HMS Invincible and HMS Hermes to the Falklands. Each carrier fielded five vertical takeoff Sea Harriers armed with American Sidewinder missiles — all major components of the U.K.’s air war in the Falklands.
The contingency plan to provide a replacement carrier was developed at the Royal Navy’s request.
“As in most of the requests from the Brits at the time, it was an informal request on a ‘what if’ basis, Navy to Navy,” Lehman said.

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