|Landing Ship Dock USS Fort McHenry, LSD-43, sailing into Kiel, FRG, |
this June, looking like a Somali garbage scow.
This was for BALTOPS, in mid-June this year. After a small crapstorm, they finally cleaned it up in August.
After sending it overseas to be the laughingstock of NATO's other navies, and the world.
There is no excuse for this whatsoever in a peacetime navy, and damned little more even if we were at war, unless it was coming back from six months' continuous service on the Murmansk convoys or something.
And if USS Rustbucket looks that bad on the outside, imagine what an unredeemed cauldron of shit it must look like on the inside. Let alone how well it functions.
Relieve the captain, march him down the gangplank in irons, then do the same for the squadron commander (COMPHIBRON 6), and the group commander (COMEXSTRKGRU 2) for dereliction of duty. And that lenient treatment only, once again, because "keelhauling" and "flogging around the fleet" are no longer countenanced in the current edition of the military Manual For Courts Martial. Gawd, how standards have slipped since they went all soft on this behavior.
Then make every officer and CPO on that ship each write "I will not sail out of port in a rusty bucket of shit." 10,000 times, on a blackboard, non-stop until completion or collapse, or else voluntary surrender their promotion and commissioning warrants, and retire on the spot, for cause, in lieu of a general court martial.
Then park that tub of shit pierside at Norfolk, and set all hands, both onboard that ship and assigned to the base proper, to rust and paint detail, around the clock, until it looks like a Navy ship of the line, rather than a pirate mothership from the Horn of Africa, or something left floating in the head after the plumbing has broken down.
If they need to do that with every other ship in the Navy, in a conga line, so be it, until they stop sending ships to sea looking like they're departing on their final voyage to be scuttled.
This is like Naval Operations 101 stuff, and yet we've got alleged leaders with 20+ years commissioned and non-commissioned service who can't grasp it.
It's a good thing the current Navy has nearly one admiral for every commissioned ship, and they still look like this. Not that that's a flagrant waste of taxpayer dollars or anything.
If the Navy is so hard up for maintenance, perhaps all those soon-to-be cashiered JAGholes from NRSW formerly persecuting SEAL team members can be reassigned to paint details while they await the processing of their paperwork for either enforced or early separation.
It would do them, and the Navy, a world of good.
Regarding Comments about how this was manpower, over-utilization, etc. etc. blah blah blah:
Excuses are like @$$holes: everyone has one and they're all full of $#!^.
There are many reasons for a ship of the line, even a gator freighter,
looking like a rusty $#!^bucket on the Zambezi River garbage packet, but there's NO excuse for this.
If those squids (and anyone serving aboard her is a squid, not a sailor) had time to eat, crap, and sleep, they had time to chip and paint.
They failed to do so for months.
Thus the harshest punishments should be doled out to that shit's (not a typo) officers and CPOs.
They're leadership fuck-ups, deserve 0.0 pros and cons, and there's no excuse that suffices for that.
If the ship is short on maintenance funds, maybe a couple of weeks on bread and water at all mealtimes for all hands will magically loosen up funds for paint and brushes. Start that policy in the wardroom and the goatlocker, and you'd be amazed how fast the crew will turn to.
After that, a command inspection of the inside of USS RUSTBUCKET, from bilge to radio mast tip is in order.
The fleets should also start awarding a red "F" for fuck-up, to be painted in the same place and same size the "E" goes currently, to the worst ships in each fleet, worn as a badge of shame until the next annual awards, and with every foul-up in every rate all transferred onto the ship, and anyone showing merit transferred out.
It's the same reason Gen. Savage detailed his deadweight former XO to command the B-17 "Leper Colony".