Category Archives: News & Analysis

Eugene P. Wilkinson: Nuclear Navy Pioneer

Eugene P. Wilkinson: Nuclear Navy Pioneer

Vice Adm. Eugene P. Wilkinson. US Naval Institute Photo

Vice Adm. Eugene P. Wilkinson. US Naval Institute Photo

The following is an excerpt from the introduction of Vice Adm. Eugene Parks Wilkinson’s oral history for the U.S. Naval Institute. Parks died on July 11 in Del Mar, Calif. at the age of 94.

Eugene Parks Wilkinson was born in Long Beach, California, on 10 August 1918, the son of Dennis William and Daisy Parks Wilkinson. He attended Holtville, California, High School and San Diego State College. He graduated from the latter in 1938 with a Bachelor of Arts degree with a major in chemistry. He taught chemistry there for a year. He also filled in and taught a course in mathematics. During this year he attended the University of Southern California. The next year he had a teaching fellowship in chemistry at USC. During those two years he completed all of the course work for a doctor’s degree but never did a thesis or received any graduate degree. Commissioned ensign in the U.S. Naval Reserve on 12 December 1940, he was transferred to the regular U.S. Navy on 28 August 1946. Read More

Navy to Send Ship on Drug Patrols After Four-Month Hiatus

Navy to Send Ship on Drug Patrols After Four-Month Hiatus

USS Rentz (FFG-46) in 2009. US Navy Photo

USS Rentz (FFG-46) in 2009. US Navy Photo

The U.S. Navy will resume patrols for drug runners in the Caribbean and the Eastern Pacific after an almost four month hiatus due to budget cuts, Navy officials told USNI News on Monday.

Oliver Hazard Perry-class frigate USS Rentz (FFG-46) is set to travel to U.S. Southern Command in August for a six-month deployment, Navy 4th Fleet’s Lt. Cmdr. Corey Barker told USNI News. Read More

Greenert and Amos Talk Future of Navy and Marine Corps

Greenert and Amos Talk Future of Navy and Marine Corps

Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) Adm. Jonathan Greenert and Commandant of the Marine Corps Gen. James Amos speak at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) as part of their national defense speakers series on July 11, 2013. US Navy Photo

Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) Adm. Jonathan Greenert and Commandant of the Marine Corps Gen. James Amos speak at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) as part of their national defense speakers series on July 11, 2013. US Navy Photo

The commandant of the Marine Corps and the chief of naval operations made the case for forward presence in an era of declining defense spending at a Washington to a national security forum think tank last week as events in Egypt threaten to spiral out of control.

Adm. Jonathan Greenert explained how the Navy and the Marine Corps can react quickly to situations citing the movement of USS Kearsarge (LHD-3) and USS San Antonio (LPD-17) into the Red Sea following the Egyptian military’s removal of President Mohamed Morsi from office as an immediate example of forward presence’s value and tailored forces. The ships were sent closer to the conflict, “because we don’t know what’s going to happen” in Egypt. “We can’t garrison and respond. It will be too late,” to handle a possible evacuation of Americans from the country, Greenert said. Read More

Opinion: Build New Ships Based on San Antonio Hull

Opinion: Build New Ships Based on San Antonio Hull

USS San Antonio (LPD 17), part of the Kearsarge Amphibious Ready group, underway on June 16, 2013. US Navy Photo

USS San Antonio (LPD 17), part of the Kearsarge Amphibious Ready group, underway on June 16, 2013. US Navy Photo

Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Jonathan Greenert said last year: “We need to move from ‘luxury car’ platforms — with their built-in capabilities — toward dependable ‘trucks’ that can handle a changing payload selection.” There is one platform that can fulfill that requirement: the San Antonio-class landing platform dock (LPD). Read More

Jane's: Saudi Missile Site Could Hit Israel, Iran

Jane’s: Saudi Missile Site Could Hit Israel, Iran

An alleged ballistic missile site outside of Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Jane's Photo

An alleged ballistic missile site outside of Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Jane’s Photo

Saudi Arabia appears to have a previously undisclosed ballistic missile site possessing launch sites oriented toward Israel and Iran, according to an analysis of satellite images from Jane’s Defence Weekly.

The site — believed to use Chinese DF-3 ballistic missiles acquired by Saudi Arabia in the 1980s — is about 125 miles southwest of the capital of Riyadh near the town of Al-Watah.

According to the report, one launch pad is oriented toward Israeli targets — including Tel Aviv — while a second pad is set to send missiles in the direction of Tehran. Read More

Updated: No Tasking for U.S. Marines Near Egypt to Intervene in Conflict

Updated: No Tasking for U.S. Marines Near Egypt to Intervene in Conflict

USS Kearsarge (LHD-3), left, leads the amphibious dock landing ship USS Carter Hall (LSD-50) and the amphibious transport dock ship USS San Antonio (LPD-17) on June 16, 2013. US Navy Photo

USS Kearsarge (LHD-3), left, leads the amphibious dock landing ship USS Carter Hall (LSD-50) and the amphibious transport dock ship USS San Antonio (LPD-17) on June 16, 2013. US Navy Photo

Marines on two amphibious warships in the Red Sea have not been given tasking to respond to the growing unrest in Egypt, Navy and Marine Corps officials told USNI News on Friday.

“There hasn’t been an official tasking,” Marine Capt. Eric Flanagan at the Pentagon told USNI News.
“They’re not getting ready to go into Egypt.” Read More

Countering Piracy in the Gulf of Guinea

Countering Piracy in the Gulf of Guinea

A crew member prepares to board a tanker that was hijacked by pirates in Benin on 24 July 2011. UN Photo

A crew member prepares to board a tanker that was hijacked by pirates in Benin on 24 July 2011. UN Photo

The winds of global piracy have shifted, as attacks by pirates off West Africa now exceed those of their Somali counterparts. The Nigeria-based pirates may not yet inspire Hollywood films, but they have prompted regional governments to take collective action. A June 24–25 summit in Yaounde, Cameroon, brought representatives from the Economic Community of West African States, the Economic Community of Central African States, and the Gulf of Guinea Commission together to draft a code of conduct concerning the prevention of piracy, armed robbery against ships, and illicit maritime activity. It has been signed by 22 states. Read More

Navy to Decommission 7 Frigates, MCM and SSN.

Navy to Decommission 7 Frigates, MCM and SSN.

USS Thach (FFG 43) returns to San Diego after completing a six-month deployment in the U.S. 4th Fleet area of responsibility in April, 2013. US Navy Photo

USS Thach (FFG 43) returns to San Diego after completing a six-month deployment in the U.S. 4th Fleet area of responsibility in April, 2013. US Navy Photo

Seven Oliver Hazard Perry-class frigates are up for Foreign Military Sale (FMS), according to a list of ships the Navy plans to decommission by the end of 2014.

The list, issued on Wednesday, included a Los Angeles-class nuclear attack boat USS Dallas (SSN-700), minesweeper USS Avenger (MCM-1), an amphibious warship and two Military Sealift Command ships. Read More

Pentagon's Sequestration Plan

Pentagon’s Sequestration Plan

The following is the July 10, 2013 Pentagon response to Sen. Carl Levin’s (D-Mich.) request to the Department of Defense to provide the Senate Armed Services Committee with a plan for sequestration.

The Pentagon’s Fiscal Year 2014 budget proposal ignored the 2011 Budget Control Act (BCA) which instituted across-the-board cuts to the defense budget cuts. Read More

New Age in Carrier Aviation Takes Off With X-47B Landing

New Age in Carrier Aviation Takes Off With X-47B Landing

Northrop Grumman's X-47B just before landing on the USS George H.W. Bush (CVN-77) on July, 10 2013. US Navy Photo

Northrop Grumman’s X-47B just before landing on the USS George H.W. Bush (CVN-77) on July, 10 2013. US Navy Photo

The Navy has entered a new age in carrier aviation with the successful landing of the unmanned Northrop Grumman X-47B on the USS George H.W. Bush (CVN-77), the service announced at 1:45 p.m. EST on Wednesday.

Call sign Salty Dog 502 left Naval Air Station Patuxent River, Md. shortly after 12:00 p.m. EST and flew to the Bush controlled through a complex series of algorithms and navigational sensors and landed on the deck of the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier guided not with a joystick and throttle controls but by an operator with a mouse and a keyboard.


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