From the monthly archives:

January 2010

Next Week: To San Diego For WEST 2010…

by Craig Hooper on January 28, 2010

If you’re near San Diego and of a nautical bent, stop by the San Diego Convention Center next week and take in a few speakers at WEST 2010, the big West Coast naval conclave thrown by AFCEA International and the U.S. Naval Institute.  It’s the best line-up in years!  Some highlights–General Rankbuilder 2.0 SEO & […]

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Overlooked In The QDR…Prompt Global Strike:

by Craig Hooper on January 27, 2010

Surely I can’t be the only Navy-oriented person to notice this little passage in the draft QDR: “…The Department also plans to experiment with conventional prompt global strike prototypes. Building upon insights developed during the QDR, the Secretary of Defense has ordered a follow-on study to determine what combination of joint persistent surveillance, electronic warfare, […]

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LPD-17 Fiasco: What happened to LPD-19?

by Craig Hooper on January 26, 2010

Notice how stories detailing the LPD-17 powerplant “crisis” focus on LPD-17, 18 and 21?   Notice how the reporting, in passing, note that LPD-19 and 20 encountered similar engine problems, but, after maintenance, both seem to have dodged a bullet?  Well, not so fast…it looks like the USS MESA VERDE (LPD-19) had substantive powerplant issues before her shock trials (back in August-September 2008)–USS MESA VERDE suffered a “catastrophic” mishap even […]

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The FFG-7: The LCS of the Seventies!

by Craig Hooper on January 25, 2010

Given that many of the anti-Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) crowd have adapted the FFG-7 Oliver Hazard Perry Class Frigates as a sort of “alternative” to the LCS (a legacy shipbuilding program that, in the opinion of the anti-LCS crowd, was everything the LCS program is not), a nice dose of history might be in order.  Those who now love the FFG-7 program probably don’t realize […]

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Shipbuilding in Crisis:

by Craig Hooper on January 21, 2010

Northrop Grumman’s Gulf Shipyards and Navy shipbuilding are facing a crisis. First, news broke today that multi-billion-dollar LPD-17 and LPD-21 are–even though they’re desperately needed for Haiti service–now “sidelined,” according to Insidedefense.com. The USS New York, less than a month from commissioning, has a bent crankshaft. Until that crankshaft gets fixed, LPD-21 will only be able […]

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Haiti: Trying to fuel the recovery

by Craig Hooper on January 20, 2010

One little-noticed facet of America’s Haiti-bound expeditionary aid effort is the SS Petersburg (T-AOT 9101), a 45-year old vessel that is, right now, tied to a Bay Area pier, preparing to deploy.  Why is this Ready Reserve Force asset, one that needs ten days to get going–and one of the furthest-flung pieces of equipment the United States has called into service for Haiti relief–getting activated?  Isn’t […]

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Haiti earthquake: Awaiting the aid tsunami

by Craig Hooper on January 13, 2010

Five years ago, in days after the Indian Ocean Tsunami, I wrote an op-ed for the Boston Globe–a piece that, with the Haiti disaster, remains a relevant cautionary tale today: The tsunami response, being hailed as one of the biggest U.S. military disaster relief missions in history, has been less effective than portrayed. When a deployment of just 40 […]

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In press: Blackwater’s pirate-fighting navy

by Craig Hooper on January 7, 2010

I’ve got an interview in the January 6 print edition of the Virginian Pilot (Here’s the Jan 5 online teaser): The Blackwater ship was an ineffective weapon against such attacks, according to Craig Hooper, a San Francisco-based national security strategist. “The McArthur was no pirate-fighter,” Hooper said in an e-mail . “Like any private mega-yacht, […]

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MV-22 Ospreys: Not helpful at home?

by Craig Hooper on January 3, 2010

Can the MV-22 Osprey help at home? Read my latest piece over at the North Country Times/The Californian. Some lessons here: First, where’s the utility? Notice how the Marine Corps has been trying to change the program narrative?  By saying that the MV-22 should no longer be considered a replacement for CH-46 helicopters–but approached as an entirely different kind of platform? In […]

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