Military News

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

This Day in Naval History - Sept. 28

From the Navy News Service

1822 - Sloop-of-war Peacock captures five pirate vessels.
1850 - Congress outlaws flogging on Navy ships.
1923 - Navy aircraft take first and second places in international Schneider Cup Race.
1944 - Marines occupy islands in Palaus under cover of naval aircraft and gunfire support.
1964 - First deployment of Polaris A-3 missile on USS Daniel Webster (SSBN 626) from Charleston, S.C.

CGC Escanaba seizes 963 pounds of cocaine

Written by: LT Connie Braesch

While on a law-enforcement patrol about 21 miles south of Isla de Providencia, Colombia, Sept. 17, CGC Escanaba seized more than 900 pounds of contraband from a fleeing 35-foot center-console vessel suspected of smuggling drugs.

During pursuit, the suspects on the vessel began throwing items overboard before beaching the vessel, fleeing on foot and evading capture. Escanaba crewmembers retrieved 15 bales and two backpacks of contraband from the water, which tested positive for cocaine.

The contraband was offloaded and transferred to U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency agents Friday at Base Support Unit Miami.

Escanaba is a 270-foot medium-endurance Coast Guard cutter homeported in Boston.

Flag Officer Assignments

Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus and Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Gary Roughead announced today the following assignments:

Rear Adm. (lower half) Herman A. Shelanski will be assigned as commander, Carrier Strike Group Ten, Norfolk, Va.  Shelanski is currently serving as Deputy Survey and Engagement Team, Secretary of Defense Critical Review Working Group, Washington, D.C.

Rear Adm. Robert O. Wray will be assigned as director, Maritime Partnership Program, U.S. Naval Forces Europe, Naples, Italy.  Wray is currently assigned as deputy commander, Military Sealift Command, Washington, D.C.

Continuing Promise 2010 Brings Relief to Nicaraguan Family

From Continuing Promise 2010 Public Affairs

CORN ISLAND, Nicaragua (NNS) -- Fleet Surgical Team (FST) and Planning Operations and Medical Intelligence (POMI) Continuing Promise 2010 (CP10) members brought relief to a local family Sept. 19 while conducting advance team support for the CP10 mission in Bluefields and Corn Island, Nicaragua.

The team assisted a mother and her children who were recently impacted when their Corn Island home was destroyed by fire.

"In the short time it took the mother of three to go to the store for bread, a fire started at her home where her children were sleeping," said Lt. Janette Arencibea, FST POMI CP10 planner. "A gas tank exploded, and the eldest of the three children hurriedly rushed to rescue his younger siblings resulting in burns to over thirty percent of his body. He was only able to save one of his younger brothers. As word spread of the family in need, we were eager to assist."

A visit by CP10 personnel to the home that was destroyed resulted in a lesson about a community of people who came to the need of a destitute mother.

Lt. Jason Holbrook, Maritime Civil Affairs and Security Training Command, said a visit to the extended family of the victims by CP10 personnel, resulted in a lesson about a community of people who came to the need of a destitute mother.

"What we learned was a heart warming lesson in community support," said Holbrook. "While it is a wonderful opportunity to fill a void or meet the needs of people who experience destitute, the team from USS Iwo Jima learned much from the people of Corn Island who came together and were able to say 'we're doing everything we can to make it better for the family's return'."

When the fire broke out, a relative near the home responded with one of a few fire extinguishers on the island. She retrieved the oldest child in time to treat serious burns with egg whites and butter; the only therapy immediately available. The child was transported to the hospital at Corn Island where Nicaraguan doctors arranged for an immediate flight to Managua.

At Corn Island, family members were able to care for the surviving child, allowing the mother to escort her son for treatment to Managua. While the mother and son were gone, the people of Corn Island worked together to donate time, food, clothing and building supplies to the family. The mayor purchased materials for a foundation and roof for a new home. Men who volunteered from the local community constructed a new home while women delivered meals to them on the job site.

In just a few days, CP10 personnel said the new structure quickly came to life and resembled a home, and they expected it to be complete by the time the mother and her son return to Corn Island in the next three weeks.

The local family members have been able to talk with the boy in Managua who is undergoing treatment for his burns, now nine percent down from 30 percent of his body.

"He is doing very well," said Kerry Morgan, a cousin to the mother. "All he wants to do is play baseball with his uncle when he gets back."

Anti-Sub Exercises Send Deterrence Message to North Korea

By Donna Miles
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Sept. 28, 2010 – The U.S. and South Korea navies kicked off anti-submarine warfare exercises yesterday in the waters off the Korean peninsula, sending what officials call an important message of deterrence to North Korea as South Korea commemorates the 60th anniversary of Seoul’s liberation.

The five-day exercises are the second in a series and are focused on anti-submarine tactics, techniques and procedures, U.S. Forces Korea officials reported.

The USS John S. McCain and  the USS Fitzgerald, both guided-missile destroyers forward-deployed to Yokosuka Naval Base, Japan; Military Sealift Command’s ocean surveillance ship USNS Victorious, a fast-attack submarine, and P-3C Orion aircraft from Patrol Squadron 9, home-ported at Kaneohe Marine Corps Base, Hawaii, are participating in the exercise, officials said.
South Korea has deployed two destroyers, a fast frigate, a patrol craft, P-3C aircraft from Carrier Air Wing 6 and a submarine.

The first exercise in this series, Combined Naval and Air Readiness Exercise Invincible Spirit, was conducted in the seas east of the Korean peninsula in July.

Officials emphasized that the exercises are defensive in nature and designed to improve interoperability within the U.S.-South Korean alliance.

Meanwhile, thousands of South Korean, U.S. and U.N. allied representatives gathered in Seoul to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the recapture of the South Korean capital from North Korea during the Korean War.

The North Korean army seized Seoul three days after stampeding across the border on June 25, 1950 and launching the Korean War. U.N. forces liberated Seoul on Sept. 28, 1950, less than two weeks after a massive amphibious landing in Inchon enabled them to break the North Korean army’s supply lines.

Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki is leading the U.S. delegation during two days of commemorative events that began yesterday in Seoul. U.S. Ambassador to South Korea Kathleen Stephens, Secretary of the Army John McHugh and Andrew Shapiro, assistant secretary of State for political-military affairs, are accompanying Shinseki.

During today’s ceremonies, South Korean President Lee Myung-bak thanked the U.N. and U.S. forces who came to his country’s aid during the war. “We will remember your sacrifice and dedication forever," he said.

Speaking as North Korea’s ruling party convened its biggest meeting in 30 years, and as North Korean leader Kim Jong-il promoted his son and expected successor, Kim Jong-un, Lee also offered a stern reminder that the North Korean threat continues.

Lee pointed to the sinking of the South Korean navy frigate Cheonan in March, killing 46 of its 104 sailors.

Despite North Korea’s denials, an investigation led by South Korea with input from the United States, Australia, Great Britain and Sweden confirmed that North Korean was responsible for the attack. “The evidence points overwhelmingly to the conclusion that the torpedo was fired by a North Korean submarine,” the team concluded. “There is no other plausible explanation.”

Lee also called during yesterday’s ceremonies for a “drastic transformation” within ROK military forces to improve their defensive capabilities.

South Korea already is on a path to assuming wartime operational command of its forces in 2015, a target that Lee had asked to delay from 2012 to 2015 in light of North Korea’s latest provocations.

Details of the transfer plan are spelled out in the new Strategic Alliance 2015 agreement, which Army Gen. Walter L. “Skip” Sharp, commander of U.S. Forces Korea, Combined Forces Command and United Nations Command, announced earlier this month.

The plan covers not only transferring wartime operational command to South Korea, but also developing new war plans, introducing broader and more realistic exercises, reviewing both countries’ military organizational structures and timing the movement of U.S. forces south of Seoul and ensuring South Korean forces are ready, Sharp explained.

Sharp said the plan also will help to identify military capabilities South Korean forces will need in 2015, and ensure that South Korean military acquisitions, training and organizational efforts are geared toward achieving them.

“Strategic Alliance 2015 will enable the South Korean and U.S. forces to successfully confront future security challenges and set the conditions for lasting peace in the Korean peninsula and the region,” Sharp told the Senate Armed Services Committee earlier this month. South Korea and the United States “are more strongly united than ever before to deter North Korean provocations and aggression, and to defeat them if necessary,” the general said.

Military News: Petaluma Welcome Home Day#links

Military News: Petaluma Welcome Home Day#links

Military News: Petaluma Welcome Home Day#links

Military News: Petaluma Welcome Home Day#links