The Tug and Salvage Fleet T-ATS(X) has a Builder!

March 26, 2018

As a staunch advocate for the Navy’s tug and salvage fleet, I am thrilled to see the drama-filled T-ATS(X) program head towards production (some history here). It has been a long road for this important but low-profile and oft-ignored vessel–the T-ATS(X) wallowed under multiple RFIs for years. It nearly foundered after several efforts to privatize […]

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Shockingly, USS Ford to be Shocked

March 24, 2018

I know I should be talking about big bolus of shipbuilding cash that is headed the Navy’s way, but…I’d be remiss if I failed to note some Ford Class news. Inside Defense reports: The Navy is reverting to an earlier plan and will shock test the lead ship of its new aircraft carrier class, the Gerald R. […]

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Frank FFG(X) Feelings From the Fincantieri CEO

March 15, 2018

Giuseppe Bono is one of those crafty elders of the shipbuilding community, so his recent interview in Defensenews.com, conducted by Tom Kington, is worth a closer examination. It is one of the more interesting salvoes in a brutal FFG(X) marketing frenzy. Now, Fincantieri is in something of a complicated spot regarding the future frigate bid. […]

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Shut Up and Shock the USS Ford (CVN 78)

March 8, 2018

America has a very small window of time to shock test a Ford Class aircraft carrier. If missed, the Ford Class will likely not be shocked at all–a perplexing oversight as America “girds” anew for conventional state-state conflict. I am worried. Recent Ford shock trial coverage suggests American maritime commentators forget that the USS Nimitz (CVN 68) […]

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The Army’s Navy Re-Awakens: Don’t Overlook MSV(L)

December 16, 2017

With 2017 drawing to a close, it occurred to me that I have been remiss on discussing the reinvigoration of the “Army’s Navy” with the award of the Light Maneuver Support Vessel (MSV(L)) building contract. I have also been remiss in highlighting the winning prime contractor, an “on-the-move” multi-state industrial conglomerate called Vigor Industrial. Under […]

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In Press: Talking Biomedical Strategy at DefenseOne.com

November 6, 2017

I have a piece up at DefenseOne.com today dissecting the USNS Comfort saga off Puerto Rico. Go read it, here. (And then maybe take a look at my submarine piece, too) Anyway, my message at DefenseOne should be a familiar refrain to long-time readers here–America must pay a bit more attention to military medicine and […]

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Prepare To Welcome the F-18 Stingray

November 5, 2017

There should be little mystery behind Northrop Grumman’s recent decision to withdraw from the MQ-25 Stingray Program. As the requirements have trickled out, the Stingray has started to look very much like an unmanned F-18 variant. And that’s great, because an F-18 variant would help the Navy focus on integrating a pedestrian unmanned platform into […]

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In Press: Some Thoughts On USS Ford (CVN 78)

August 2, 2017

The newly-commissioned USS Ford (CVN 78) recovered and launched its first aircraft less than a week after commissioning. And while that achievement is all well and good, don’t get too carried away by the hype. Wait for the Ford’s first deployment before really cheering this new carrier and all its new tech. As I told Project […]

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State Brings Back the Patrol Yacht!

July 25, 2017

The State Department is getting a boat! A BOAT. It’s about bloody time. Every embassy in Oceania (at least!) should have a boat, and, frankly, America would be more secure if there were some floating consulates wandering about the Pacific, facilitating better engagement and collecting intel first-hand (I’ve kvetched about the lack of State Department […]

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The First Fight For Trump’s Fleet Will Be Domestic

July 10, 2017

Under President Trump’s new SECNAV, the Navy’s first fight will be domestic. Shortly after confirmation, SECNAV Richard V. Spencer will purge the Fleet of some politically and societally-challenging ship names. Count on it. Purveyors of routine DC conventional wisdom may scoff, but a renaming campaign before the 2018 Midterm Elections is inevitable. And it won’t […]

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