WASHINGTON (AP) — The Pentagon is cutting its aircraft carrier presence in the Persian Gulf region from two carriers to one, the Defense Department said Wednesday, in a move that represents one of the most significant effects of budget cuts on the U.S. military presence overseas. The decision comes as Washington struggles to find a way to avoid sharp automatic spending cuts set to strike the Pentagon and domestic programs next month.
Defense Secretary Leon Panetta has approved keeping just one carrier in the Persian Gulf region. The U.S. has maintained two aircraft carrier groups in the Gulf for most of the last two years.
Panetta has been leading a campaign to replace the automatic cuts he warns would “hollow out” the military, and the Pentagon has been providing greater details on the cuts it would have to make if Congress fails to both replace them and agree on a 2013 defense budget bill. The carrier decision is one of the most significant announcements made thus far.
But, naturally, as the rest of America and its military are cut to the bone via Mr Obama’s sequestration, let us take joy and pride in the fact that Joe Biden, our efficient and intellectual vice president, has received a pay hike.
President Barack Obama issued an executive order to end the pay freeze on federal employees, in effect giving some federal workers a raise. One federal worker now to receive a pay increase is Vice President Joe Biden.
According to disclosure forms, Biden made a cool $225,521 last year. After the pay increase, he’ll now make $231,900 per year.
Also on the list for a pay bump are all of the Senators, House members, John Boehner, majority and minority leaders in both chambers and all the members of the Supreme Court. They — frankly — got “theirs.”
But, in consideration, perhaps it’s time to realize that the Middle East isn’t any kind of “hot spot” and that, in truth, its delicacy is only offered up by those who wish to exploit global politics over the national good.
Because the Middle East is the last place the United States could expect immediate and serious trouble, is it not?
For those interested, an historical list of our US aircraft carriers:
|CV-1||Langley||1922||Langley-class, lead ship||Sunk, 27 February 1942 65 nm south of Cilacap, Java|
|CV-2||Lexington||1927||Lexington-class, lead ship||Sunk, 8 May 1942 in the Battle of the Coral Sea|
|CV-3||Saratoga||1927||Lexington-class||Sunk, 25 July 1946 in Operation Crossroads as a nuclear test target|
|CV-4||Ranger||1934||Ranger-class, lead ship||Decommissioned: 18 October 1946. Scrapped 1947|
|CV-5||Yorktown||1937||Yorktown-class, lead ship||Sunk, 7 June 1942 in the Battle of Midway|
|CV-6||Enterprise||1938||Yorktown-class||Decommissioned: 17 February 1947. Scrapped 1960|
|CV-7||Wasp||1940||Wasp-class, lead ship||Sunk, 15 September 1942 during the Guadalcanal campaign|
|CV-8||Hornet||1941||Yorktown-class||Sunk, 27 October 1942 in the Battle of the Santa Cruz Islands|
|CV-9 a, c, d||Essex||1942||Essex-class, lead ship||Decommissioned: 30 June 1969. Scrapped 1975|
|CV-10 a, c, d||Yorktown||1943||Essex-class||Decommissioned: 27 June 1970. Preserved, Patriot’s Point Naval & Maritime Museum—Mount Pleasant, South Carolina, USA|
|CV-11 b, c, d||Intrepid||1943||Essex-class||Decommissioned: 15 March 1974. Preserved, Intrepid Sea-Air-Space Museum—New York, New York, USA|
|CV-12 a, c, d||Hornet||1943||Essex-class||Decommissioned: 26 June 1970. Preserved, USS Hornet Museum—Alameda, California, USA|
|CV-13||Franklin||1944||Essex-class||Decommissioned: 17 February 1947. Scrapped 1966|
|CV-14 b, c, d||Ticonderoga||1944||Long hull Essex-class||Decommissioned: 1 September 1973. Scrapped 1975|
|CV-15 a, c, d||Randolph||1944||Long hull Essex-class||Decommissioned: 13 February 1969. Scrapped 1975|
|CV-16 b, c, f||Lexington||1943||Essex-class||Decommissioned: 8 November 1991. Preserved, USS Lexington Museum On the Bay— Corpus Christi, Texas, USA|
|CV-17||Bunker Hill||1943||Essex-class||Decommissioned: 9 January 1947. Scrapped 1973|
|CV-18 a, c, d||Wasp||1943||Essex-class||Decommissioned: 1 July 1972. Scrapped 1973|
|CV-19 b, c||Hancock||1944||Long hull Essex-class||Decommissioned: 30 January 1976. Scrapped 1976|
|CV-20 a, c, d||Bennington||1944||Essex-class||Decommissioned: 15 January 1970. Scrapped 1994|
|CV-21 e||Boxer||1945||Long hull Essex-class||Decommissioned: 1 December 1969. Scrapped 1971|
|CVL-22||Independence||1943||Independence-class light carrier, lead ship||Nuclear test target in Operation Crossroads, July 1946. Decommissioned: 28 August 1946. Scuttled 29 January 1951|
|CVL-23||Princeton||1943||Independence-class||Sunk, 24 October 1944, Battle of Leyte Gulf|
|CVL-24||Belleau Wood||1943||Independence-class||Transferred to France as Bois Belleau (R97) (1953–1960). Returned to U.S. Scrapped 1960|
|CVL-25||Cowpens||1943||Independence-class||Decommissioned: 13 January 1947. Scrapped 1960|
|CVL-26||Monterey||1943||Independence-class||Decommissioned: 16 January 1956. Scrapped 1971|
|CVL-27||Langley||1943||Independence-class||Transferred to France as La Fayette (R96) (1951–1963). Returned to U.S. Scrapped 1964|
|CVL-28||Cabot||1943||Independence-class||Transferred to Spain as Dédalo (R-01) (1967–1989). Returned to the U.S. Scrapped 2002|
|CVL-29||Bataan||1943||Independence-class||Decommissioned: 9 April 1954. Scrapped 1961|
|CVL-30||San Jacinto||1943||Independence-class||Decommissioned: 1 March 1947. Scrapped 1972|
|CV-31 b, c||Bon Homme Richard||1944||Essex-class||Decommissioned: 2 July 1971. Scrapped 1992|
|CV-32 d||Leyte||1946||Long hull Essex-class||Decommissioned: 15 May 1959. Scrapped 1970|
|CV-33 a, c, d||Kearsarge||1946||Long hull Essex-class||Decommissioned: 13 February 1970. Scrapped 1974|
|CV-34 a, b, c||Oriskany||1950||Long hull Essex-class||Decommissioned: 30 September 1976. Scuttled as an artificial reef, May 2006 in the Gulf of Mexico|
(August 12, 1945)
|Long hull Essex-class||Canceled while under construction. Hulk launched in 1946 and used for experiments and explosive tests. Scrapped 1949|
|CV-36 d||Antietam||1945||Long hull Essex-class||Decommissioned: 8 May 1963. Scrapped 28 February 1974|
|CV-37 e||Princeton||1945||Long hull Essex-class||Decommissioned: 30 January 1970. Scrapped 1971|
|CV-38 b, c, d||Shangri-la||1944||Long hull Essex-class||Decommissioned: 30 July 1971. Scrapped 1988|
|CV-39 a,d||Lake Champlain||1945||Long hull Essex-class||Decommissioned: 2 May 1966. Scrapped 1972|
|CV-40 d||Tarawa||1945||Long hull Essex-class||Decommissioned: 13 May 1960. Scrapped 1968|
|CVB-41 b, c||Midway||1945||Midway-class, lead ship||Decommissioned: 11 April 1992. Preserved, USS Midway Museum—San Diego, California, USA|
|CVB-42 b, c||Franklin D. Roosevelt||1945||Midway-class||Decommissioned: 30 September 1977. Scrapped 1978|
|CVB-43 b, c||Coral Sea||1947||Midway-class||Decommissioned: 26 April 1990. Scrapped 2000|
|CV-45 e||Valley Forge||1946||Long hull Essex-class||Decommissioned: 15 January 1970. Scrapped 1971|
(August 12, 1945)
|Long hull Essex-class||Canceled while under construction. Scrapped 1946|
|CV-47 d||Philippine Sea||1946||Long hull Essex-class||Decommissioned: 28 December 1958. Scrapped 1971|
|CVL-48||Saipan||1946||Saipan-class, lead ship||Converted to USS Arlington (AGMR-2) 1966. Decommissioned: 14 January 1970. Scrapped 1976|
|CVL-49||Wright||1947||Saipan-class||Converted to USS Wright (CC-2) 1963. Decommissioned: 27 May 1970. Scrapped 1980|
|CV-50||Canceled||Long hull Essex-class||Canceled|
|CV-51||Canceled||Long hull Essex-class||Canceled|
|CV-52||Canceled||Long hull Essex-class||Canceled|
|CV-53||Canceled||Long hull Essex-class||Canceled|
|CV-54||Canceled||Long hull Essex-class||Canceled|
|CV-55||Canceled||Long hull Essex-class||Canceled|
(April 23, 1949)
|United States-class supercarrier, lead ship||Canceled five days after the ship’s keel was laid down|
|CV-59||Forrestal||1955||Forrestal-class supercarrier, lead ship||Decommissioned 11 September 1993. Currently docked at NISMF, Philadelphia, PA|
|CV-60||Saratoga||1956||Forrestal-class supercarrier||Decommissioned 20 August 1994. To be dismantled at NS Newport, RI|
|CV-61||Ranger||1957||Forrestal-class supercarrier||Decommissioned 10 July 1993. On donation hold, docked at NISMF, Bremerton, WA|
|CV-62||Independence||1959||Forrestal-class supercarrier||Decommissioned 30 September 1998. Awaiting disposal, docked at NISMF, Bremerton, WA|
|CV-63||Kitty Hawk||1961||Kitty Hawk–class supercarrier, lead ship||Decommissioned 12 May 2009. In reserve until 2015, docked at NISMF, Bremerton, WA|
|CV-64||Constellation||1961||Kitty Hawk–class supercarrier||Decommissioned 6 August 2003. Awaiting disposal, docked at NISMF, Bremerton, WA|
|CVN-65||Enterprise||1961||Enterprise-class supercarrier, lead ship||Inactive 1 December 2012. Decommission 15 March 2013 (scheduled).
Awaiting defueling, docked at Naval Station Norfolk, Norfolk, VA.
Slated for disposal
|CV-66||America||1965||Kitty Hawk–class supercarrier||Decommissioned 9 August 1996. Scuttled in 2005 as a live-fire test platform|
|CV-67||John F. Kennedy||1968||Kennedy-class supercarrier, lead ship||Decommissioned 1 August 2007. On donation hold, docked at NISMF, Philadelphia, PA.|
|CVN-68||Nimitz||1975||Nimitz-class supercarrier, lead ship||Active; Homeport: Naval Station Everett, Everett, Washington|
|CVN-69||Dwight D. Eisenhower||1977||Nimitz-class supercarrier||Active; Homeport: Naval Station Norfolk, Norfolk, Virginia|
|CVN-70||Carl Vinson||1981||Nimitz-class supercarrier||Active; Homeport: Naval Air Station North Island, San Diego, California|
|CVN-71||Theodore Roosevelt||1986||Nimitz-class supercarrier||Active; Homeport: Naval Station Norfolk, Norfolk, Virginia|
|CVN-72||Abraham Lincoln||1989||Nimitz-class supercarrier||Active; Homeport: Naval Station Norfolk, Norfolk, Virginia|
|CVN-73||George Washington||1992||Nimitz-class supercarrier||Active; Homeport: Yokosuka Naval Base, Yokosuka, Japan|
|CVN-74||John C. Stennis||1995||Nimitz-class supercarrier||Active; Homeport: Naval Base Kitsap, Bremerton, Washington|
|CVN-75||Harry S. Truman||1998||Nimitz-class supercarrier||Active; Homeport: Naval Station Norfolk, Norfolk, Virginia|
|CVN-76||Ronald Reagan||2003||Nimitz-class supercarrier||Active; Homeport: Naval Base Kitsap: Bremerton|
|CVN-77||George H.W. Bush||2009||Nimitz-class supercarrier||Active; Homeport: Naval Station Norfolk, Norfolk, Virginia|
|CVN-78||Gerald R. Ford||2015||Ford-class supercarrier, lead ship||Keel laid; Newport News Shipbuilding, Newport News, Virginia|
|CVN-79||John F. Kennedy||~2020||Ford-class supercarrier||First steel cut; Newport News Shipbuilding, Newport News, Virginia|
|CVN-80||Enterprise||~2025||Ford-class supercarrier||Planned; Newport News Shipbuilding, Newport News, Virginia|
The United States now cannot afford to accomplish the USS Lincoln overhaul and refueling.
The aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72) refueling complex overhaul (RCOH) will not start due to a lack of funding, the Navy said Feb. 8.
Lincoln was expected to move to Newport News shipyard next week to begin the overhaul. However, as a result of the fiscal constraints resulting from the ongoing continuing resolution (CR), the contract for the refueling complex overhaul (RCOH) has not been issued to Huntington Ingalls Industries, Inc.
Lincoln will remain pierside at Naval Station Norfolk until sufficient funding is received to start the execution of the RCOH. In the meantime, the ship’s Sailors continue to conduct maintenance.
In their 50 year life spans, one RCOH is scheduled for the midpoint of an aircraft carrier’s service life. Lincoln was commissioned 23 years ago Nov. 11, 1989.
The impact of postponing CVN 72’s RCOH is three-fold:
* the time scheduled for the RCOH will have to be lengthened because the overhaul won’t begin when it was expected,
* delayed redelivery of Lincoln to the fleet,
* and impacts to industry (takes away money/jobs and can delay subsequent scheduled availabilities).
Cancelling or delaying maintenance creates a significant backlog of deferred maintenance and affects future year schedules and costs, as well as future readiness. The delay in Lincoln’s RCOH will affect other carrier work. Because of the short time available between sequential dockings, the delay will also result in day-for-day impacts to the defueling of the recently inactivated Enterprise (CVN 65) and the start of USS George Washington’s (CVN 73) RCOH.