Monday, March 14, 2011

Why another aircraft carrier? Japan needs a MPF and Hospital Ship.

USNS Comfort receives supplies during an underway replenishment with USNS Robert E. Peary
MV Cpl. Louis J. Hauge Jr.
A barge carrying Marine Corps vehicles approaches USNS Pfc. Dewayne T. Williams
ASD News is reporting that another aircraft carrier is on its way to Japan.
"We currently have an aircraft carrier in Japan, and another is on the way," Obama said. He said another ship was heading to US territories in the Mariana Islands to "assist as needed."

A Pentagon spokesman said the two carriers were the USS George Washington, which is based at Yokosuka near Tokyo, and the USS Ronald Reagan, which was en route to South Korea for exercises and has been redirected to Japan.
Why?

Unless their are security concerns that I'm not aware of then what the Japanese people really need is (in addition to the Marines already on the island)...

1.  Activation of the 82nd's Ready Brigade.  I understand that its been stood up again after a hiatus.  Now is as good a reason as any to test its capabilities.
2.  A hospital ship to treat injured civilians.  Local hospitals are state of the art but are suffering from rolling blackouts...possibly a shortage of personnel due to the tremendous loss of life and also possibly damage from the earthquake and tsunami.  A hospital ship would be a life saver.
3.  An MPF ship.  The Marines have alot of helicopters in the area.  The Japanese forces can provide even more...what they might lack is organic heavy equipment.  If roads are impassable then we're talking weeks, maybe months until they can be repaired.  Rescue operations will require cranes, bulldozers and other equipment to start the search.  The Japanese authorities can start working north from unaffected areas but to get to the zone quickly a port must be established.  Since they were damaged then the amphibious capabilities of the MPF and their assorted equipment must be brought to bear.

An aircraft carrier is the last thing Japan needs...unless they're worried that N. Korea is about to do something stupid.

Welsh Guards Battlegroup Sniper. One bullet...Two kills.

via the Telegraph.
Within 40 days, the two marksmen from 4 Rifles, part of the Welsh Guards Battle group, had achieved 75 confirmed kills with 31 attributed to Potter and 44 to Osmond. Each kill was chalked up as a little stick man on the beam above the firing position in their camouflaged sangar beside the base gate – a stick man with no head denoting a target eliminated with a shot to the skull.
Follow the link.  Fascinating.