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June 19, 2012

The Shrinking US Navy-A Continuing Series

Politicians can talk about "smaller, more nimble force" but unless they reduce commitments and the definition of our strategic interests it just means doing the same or more with less.

Behold the soon to be new normal for the US Navy.

The Eisenhower Carrier Strike Group is days away from a nine-month deployment one of the longest CSG cruises in decades.

On Wednesday, the carrier Dwight D. Eisenhower, along with Carrier Airwing 8, and destroyers Winston S. Churchill and Jason Dunham will leave Norfolk, Va., and cruiser Hue City and destroyer Farragut will leave Mayport, Fla.

Navy officials said the long deployment is driven by ongoing demands around the globe and a finite number of ships in the fleet. The Ike CSG is expected to complete operations in the 5th and 6th fleets.

The longer deployments were scheduled to take some of the burden off of other ships in the fleet that have been well-used over the last decade, said Rear Adm. Philip Davidson, the director for Global Force Management, Operations and Intelligence at Fleet Forces Command, in an email to Navy Times.

I know Army types will say "boo-hoo nine months is nothing" but it's not the comparisons to other services that count, it's the change in operating tempo compared to previous experience within the Navy.

Nine month deployments mean more stress on crew and ships, wearing both out sooner. The idea of shrinking the Navy is simply idiotic unless or until the world suddenly grows a lot more land and a lot less water.

A hollowed out Navy...Just another way Barack Obama is Jimmy Carter.

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posted by DrewM. at 11:12 AM

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