Wednesday, August 05, 2015

A Virtual Fleet No More

For a long time, our 6th Fleet has been a virtual fleet, existing as a command and control ship bolstered by ships transiting the Mediterranean Sea to and from CENTCOM's 5th Fleet. But now 6th Fleet has warships again:

The Navy has created a new task force to address ballistic missile defense and integrated air and missile defense in the U.S. European Command (EUCOM) area of responsibility. ...

The task force will stand up on October 1 and report to U.S. 6th Fleet. Its mission is “to execute operational and tactical integrated air and missile defense including mission planning, execution, operational and tactical control of assigned units for Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Europe/U.S. Naval Forces Africa, U.S. Sixth Fleet and to provide direct support for BMD planning,” according to the memo.

So the fleet is virtual no more, when it relied on its reputation as a vast armada during the Cold War by sending transiting warships on port visits to maintain the illusion.

It's kind of funny that our defense establishment doesn't believe that Iran's nuclear missile threat to Europe has been eliminated with the nuclear deal.

Apparently the Navy isn't aware that their views don't withstand scrutiny.

But then, the Saudis don't want to rest their security on Kerry's negotiation skills and our president's confidence in his new partners in Tehran:

The U.S. State Department has approved the possible sale to Saudi Arabia of $5.4 billion in additional PAC-3 missiles built by Lockheed Martin Corp, the Pentagon said on Wednesday.

The PAC-3 is the anti-missile variant for the Patriot air defense system.

I assume my Lockheed Martin stocks will shoot up in value.