USNI News polled its writers, naval analysts and service members on what they consider the most important military and maritime stories in 2017.
The following is part of a series. Please also see Top Stories 2017: Navy Acquisition, Navy Operations, Marine Corps Operations, Marine Corps and Coast Guard Acquisition, International Operations and New Administration.
Capt. Mark Melson, commanding officer of the amphibious assault ship USS Makin Island (LHD-8), and executive officer Cmdr. David M. Oden inspect the hull of the ship in a floating dry dock at National Steel and Shipbuilding Company (NASSCO), Aug. 25. 2017. US Navy Photo
CAPITOL HILL – Nearly half the Navy’s amphibious ships are currently tied up in maintenance availabilities and the service would be several ships short of need if it had to scramble the fleet for a major contingency, in large part due to continuing resolutions and other budget challenges, top Navy and Marine Corps operations officials said today. Read More
A crane moves the lower stern into place on the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier John F. Kennedy (CVN-79) at Huntington Ingalls Shipbuilding in Newport News, Va. on June 22, 2017. HII Photo
The Navy is unable to start or ramp up a range of major programs under a continuing resolution, and Pentagon officials are urging the quick passage of a full FY 2018 budget. Read More
The following is the Aug. 8, 2017 Government Accountability Office report to Congress, F-35 Joint Strike Fighter: DOD’s Proposed Follow-on Modernization Acquisition Strategy Reflects an Incremental Approach Although Plans Are Not Yet Finalized. Read More
USS Bonhomme Richard forms up with navy ships from Australia and New Zealand on completion of Exercise Talisman Saber 17. Australian Defence Force photo.
U.S. amphibious forces in the Pacific practiced combining their ships and embarked Marines with multi-warfare surface combatants, rehearsing for so-called Upgunned Expeditionary Strike Group operations during Exercise Talisman Sabre 2017. Read More
U.S. Marine Corps Lt. Gen Jon M. Davis, deputy commandant, Aviation, salutes the flag during the playing of the national anthem during his retirement ceremony at Marine Barracks Washington, Washington, D.C., July 10, 2017. Davis retired after 37 years of service US Marine Corps photo
Marine Corps Lt. Gen. Jon Davis retired this week after 37 years of service and was a witness to generational evolution in Marine Corps Aviation. Davis began his career as an AV-8A Harrier pilot, and in his last assignment as deputy commandant for aviation guided the service to fielding the fifth-generation F-35B. Read More
A U.S. Marine Corps F-35B II Lighting assigned to Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 211 (VMFA-211) lands in order to hot load during Weapons and Tactics Instructor Course (WTI) 2-17 at Marine Corps Air Station Yuma, Ariz., March 30, 2017. US Marine Corps photo.
This post has been updated after the Marine Corps announced the end of the operational stand-down.
Flight operations in Marine Fighter Attack Squadron (VMFA) 211 resumed after a temporary one-day suspension to fix a problem related to a software update with the aircraft’s Autonomic Logistics Information System, the Marine Corps announced. Read More
An F/A-18E Super Hornet assigned to the “Tomcatters” of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 31 launches from the aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush (CVN-77) on June 9, 2017. US Navy Photo
WASHINGTON, D.C. — The total of 80 Super Hornets the Navy is set to buy over the next five years could grow based on the findings of the Pentagon’s ongoing and overarching national defense strategy review, acting Secretary of the Navy Sean Stackley and Chief of Naval Operations Adm. John Richardson told USNI News on Thursday following a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing. Read More
F-35A Lightning II aircraft receive aerial refuelings from a Travis KC-10 Extender July 13, 2016 on the flight from England to the United States. US Air Force photo.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — The armed services are still unsure why Navy and Air Force pilots are struggling with their Onboard Oxygen Generation System (OBOGS) while the Marine Corps – which uses the exact same systems – has had no problems, the Marines’ top aviator told reporters. Read More
Airman Michael Nywair signals that an F/A-18E Super Hornet from the Argonauts of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 147 is ready aboard the aircraft carrier USS Nimitz (CVN-68) on June 7, 2017. US Navy Photo
WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Navy intends to buy at least 80 more Boeing F/A-18E-F Super Hornets over the next five years to address its fighter shortfall, a change from its previous on-the-books plan to zero out the aircraft program beginning next year, service officials said in congressional testimony today. Read More