CIMSEC – As the U.S. Coast Guard undergoes a period of “prolific” acquisitions, the service must resolve a lurking specter: How to fill all of these ships with qualified personnel?
Category Archives: USCoastGuard
Illegal Fishing Has Surpassed Piracy as a Global Threat
USNI News – Illegal fishing has surpassed piracy as a Coast Guard global concern in the maritime domain, the service’s top officer overseeing response policy said Wednesday.
A Plan to Push Back Against China’s Fishing Practices
War on the Rocks – The Soviet fishing fleet was once a near-permanent fixture on America’s Pacific coast, hauling in an estimated 1.2 million tons of fish until the two sides reached an agreement to limit the Soviet catch in exchange for a relaxation of rules on Soviet port visits. Moscow’s fishing fleet dwindled in the years after the collapse of the Soviet Union, only to be replaced by China’s large fleet — and maritime militia — that Beijing now uses to encroach on the sovereignty of its neighbors. The environmental and economic challenges of illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing are clearly a threat to the global fish supply, but also represent a more direct and significant threat to national security.
Expeditionary Cutter Deployments Should Not Be a Mission to Mars
USNI Proceedings – The Coast Guard must address cutter self-sustainability
as the fleet’s range and missions become more global.
Lost At Sea: Teaching, Studying, and Promoting Coast Guard History
USNI Proceedings – The service must foster pride in its heritage among new recruits and officers.
US Coast Guard cutter is denied port call in Solomon Islands
AP – A U.S. coast guard cutter conducting patrols as part of an international mission to prevent illegal fishing was recently unable to get clearance for a scheduled port call in Solomon Islands, an incident that comes amid growing concerns of Chinese influence on the Pacific nation.
Navy Embarked MH-60R Helicopter Aboard Coast Guard Cutter
War Zone – The experiment of embarking a top-end Navy MH-60R Seahawk aboard a Legend-class cutter is likely a glimpse of the future.
The Case for U.S. Coast Guard Cutters in American Samoa
CIMSEC – Compared to the marquee U.S. military installations at Diego Garcia, Yokosuka, or Guam, American Samoa is a U.S. territory that evokes images of idyllic island life rather than strategic competition. However, by considering American Samoa through the lens of strategic competition, a military installation manned by the U.S. Coast Guard is an easy step to demonstrate commitment in the region that makes imminent sense for several reasons. Due to the sheer distances involved in the Pacific — the closest Coast Guard installations are from Hawaii (2,260 nautical miles) and Guam (3,120 nautical miles) — current sustained operations in region are necessarily expeditionary.
Beware Buyer’s Remorse: Why the Coast Guard Needs to Steer Clear of the LCS
CIMSEC – With all the negative publicity surrounding the Navy’s littoral combat ship (LCS) program, it would seem self-evident the Coast Guard has no interest in acquiring the LCS as a hand-me-down. However, with the recent publishing of “In Dire Need: Why the Coast Guard Needs the LCS,” a newly found interest in acquiring problematic navy platforms may be growing and deserves to be judged on its merits.
Coast Guard Weathering Cutter Production Delays as More Coasties Head to Sea
USNI News – The top Coast Guard officer remains optimistic at the pace of expanding the fleet of cutters despite delays in design and construction that have pushed back the expected delivery date of the first new polar icebreaker.
The Coast Guard Needs Stronger Policy to Prevent Maritime Cyber-Attacks
USNI Proceedings – The Coast Guard needs better tools to effectively prevent and respond to the escalating cyber threat.
Exploring Unmanned Surface Vehicles to Guard Ports and Harbors
CIMSEC – Port authorities must ensure security twenty-four hours a day, every day. This task includes continuous inspection of port assets, threat detection and security response, as well as on-demand inspections after storms or other disasters, ongoing surveys to ensure navigable waterways, hull inspections, and a wide-range of other missions. Unmanned surface vessels can fill this gap better than legacy approaches.
Unmanned and on Guard: A New Approach to Coast Guard Operations
USNI Blog – Faced with increasingly challenging operational scenarios, the Coast Guard must embrace unmanned systems as tip of the spear technologies to maximize capabilities and maintain relevancy in an era of international and environmental uncertainty.
In Dire Need: Why the Coast Guard Needs the LCS
CIMSEC – In the spring of 2021, defense-minded internet message boards and social media were ablaze at headlines that the U.S. Navy would be decommissioning the first hulls of the decade-old Littoral Combat Ship (LCS). A chorus of “good riddance” posts and thought pieces followed. Though the Navy maintains it intends to keep using both Independence and Freedom variants of the LCS, it is no secret that the program has been beleaguered with class-wide mechanical issues. As many in naval thought circles lament and debate what the Navy will do in the way of near shore combatants in contested waters, a unique opportunity has emerged for the U.S. Coast Guard.
Delivery Of The U.S. Coast Guard’s New Heavy Icebreaker Has Been Delayed Yet Again
War Zone – The U.S. Coast Guard’s only operational heavy icebreaker might not have a replacement by the time it needs to retire, even after a major overhaul.
Pushing or Overstepping? Legal Boundaries in the Fight Against Maritime Drug Smuggling, Part 2
CIMSEC – This installment discusses the prolonged detention of suspected smugglers aboard Coast Guard cutters and the interaction between intelligence gathering and the trial penalty during prosecution.
Pushing or Overstepping? Legal Boundaries in the Fight Against Maritime Drug Smuggling Part 1
CIMSEC – Every day, U.S. Coast Guard cutters patrol the eastern Pacific Ocean and Caribbean Sea for drug smuggling vessels, seizing more cocaine than all other American law enforcement agencies combined. Federal prosecutors then bring charges against the detained smugglers under a controversial and confusing legal regime. By analyzing the lifecycle of a case – from interdiction to detention to prosecution – this two-part article explores (1) the extraterritorial jurisdiction established by the Maritime Drug Law Enforcement Act (MDLEA); (2) the practice of detaining suspected smugglers aboard Coast Guard cutters for weeks without formal arrest; and (3) the interaction between intelligence gathering and the trial penalty. In each of these instances, a different branch of the federal government is pushing against – if not overstepping – legal constraints in order to empower the Coast Guard in the fight against maritime drug smuggling. This is a fragile system, however, and should one of these government branches become squeamish, the whole apparatus could collapse.
The U.S. Coast Guard: A Global Force for the Greater Good
USNI Blog – The global value of the U.S. Coast Guard to the nation and U.S. combatant commanders has never been higher, but it remains the least-funded U.S. armed force, making it difficult to keep pace with the increasing demands placed on this multimission, military, and maritime agency.
Seabed Mining: The Coast Guard’s Deep Future
CIMSEC – The US Coast Guard’s similar and enduring missions around maritime resource extraction make it well-suited to enforce domestic and international law in the expanding industry of seabed mining. The service should prepare for seabed mining by engaging with allies and partners and by supporting scientific research and environmental protection.
Line of Actual Control – Trying to make sense of how the US Coast Guard and the Chinese Navy went toe to toe off Alaska
U.S. Coast Guard Continues to Expand Presence in the Western Pacific
USNI News – The U.S. Coast Guard’s status as a military service coupled with its law enforcement roles allows it to effectively contribute to both the military and maritime law enforcement requirements of the Indo-Pacific region, according to the commander of U.S. Coast Guard units operating in the region.
Sea Duty: Still Wanna Do It?
USNI Proceedings – With fewer Coast Guardsmen choosing to go to sea, the cutter fleet is facing rough waters. Without intervention, it could be difficult to man, maintain, and operate the future fleet.
Countering China’s Maritime Insurgency With Coast Guard Deployable Specialized Forces
CIMSEC – Losing the green water sea control challenge in the South China Sea could sideline US-led efforts in Asia. The US Coast Guard’s Deployable Specialized Forces can step up to provide strategic support for INDOPAC command.
Russia Tracking First U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Visit to the Black Sea in 12 Years
USNI News – A Coast Guard Cutter is now in the Black Sea, a first for the service since 2008.
Coast Guard Units Remain in High Demand as Forces Stretches to Meet Needs
USNI News – The Coast Guard remains in big demand at home and overseas as it continues to modernize the service and develop its force.
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