CIMSEC – The recent issues facing the Merchant Marine are not simply the product of COVID or other recent events. They are simply yet another expression of the longstanding problems of status the Merchant Marine has faced within the U.S. Navy.
– Navy Times – For nearly five months, thousands of civilian mariners assigned to the Navy’s fleet of U.S. Military Sealift Command ships have been living under what are believed to be some of the strictest COVID-19 restrictions in the military. And those restrictions were dropped on them with almost no notice, according to their advocates.
– USNI News – An aging and inactive government fleet dependent on a shrinking pool of merchant mariners to get underway is how a new report describes the U.S. military’s strategic sealift capability.
– USNI News – When U.S. Transportation Command tested the ability of the nation’s maritime Ready Reserve Force to set sail on short notice, only about 40 percent of the vessels deemed ready were able to leave port.
– Defense News – The U.S. military in September ordered the largest stress test of its wartime sealift fleet in the command’s history, with 33 out of 61 government-owned ships being activated simultaneously. The results were bad, according to a new report.
– Defense News – The White House wants the U.S. Navy to go back to the drawing board and find new ways to replace its aging sealift fleet, a move that could set back efforts that military officials see as vital to maintaining the military’s ability to project power across the globe.
– USNI Blog – As a former surface warfare officer, now a civilian pursuing a merchant mariner license, I recently had the opportunity to serve onboard the State University of New York (SUNY) Maritime College’s training ship, the Empire State VI. I was assigned as a deck training officer and lab instructor, but I also received an immersive education in how the Merchant Marine trains its officers and operates its ships.
– USNI News – Running dark and nearly silent, last month a convoy of Military Sealift Command ships practiced delivering people and gear to the fight as part of a large U.S. Transportation Command surge sealift capability stress test.
– Defense News – America’s sealift fleet is responsible for providing the military with transportation across oceans, but despite seemingly universal acknowledgement that the fleet is in trouble, the current recapitalization plan significantly lags behind what the military needs to avoid a collapse in capacity, projected to start in 2024 if the current situation holds.
– War on the Rocks – It is important to delve into the problems facing America’s maritime power projection — specifically the diminishing capacity of the U.S. merchant marine today and its impact upon future naval operations in an era of great power competition.
– Defense News – The U.S. Navy is moving toward settling on an approach for recapitalizing the nation’s aged sealift fleet, moving away from a single common hull for five missions.
– Breaking Defense – A fundamental question in today’s budget battle is, can the MSC actually support Navy plans to more widely distribute its fleet? Today’s answer can only be a provisional yes, given the shortage of ships, and the proliferation of new high-demand drivers such as the Littoral Combat Ship. In addition to a declining merchant fleet there is a growing shortage of trained and experienced civil mariners generated by the decline in the US merchant marine.
– War is Boring – USNS ‘Invincible’ is in the perfect position to track Iranian missiles.
Virginian Pilot – As the Navy struggles to increase the size of its dwindling fleet, whatís known as the “other navy” is having little trouble. The success of the noncombat ships has kept it going since the 1970s.
Virginian Pilot – A Navy command that operates 133 ships manned mainly by civilians, but not usually counted in the fighting fleet, is getting a new name and headquarters. The Military Sealift Command has established in Norfolk the Military Sealift Fleet Support Command.
SeaPower – The state of the merchant marine in January 2005.
Virginian Pilot – The Military Sealift Command is looking for a few good cooks to feed the folks who feed and supply our sailors and troops.
Sea Power – How the Military Sealift Command is transforming itself.
Sea Power – The U.S. Navyís Military Sealift Command (MSC) undertook one of the largest and fastest military cargo movements since World War II during Operation Iraqi Freedom, and the work is not finished yet.