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    Sunday, May 25, 2008

    Museum Ships and Submarine Memorials

    One thing I have been planning to do for a while is compile a list of all the ship memorials you can visit in the United States. While a lot of this information is culled from the Wikipedia article on Museum Ships, that article lists ships all over the world, and I, with a few exceptions (those I have visited, some interesting submarines), wanted to limit this to the United States, where I, and most of you, will probably limit our travels. If you're looking for ships overseas, the Wikipedia entry was updated 5/12/2008, so it's up-to-date, and I recommend it.

    What it doesn't list, and will take me some time to improve on, is all the submarine memorials and museums that do not include ships. I expect that list will take quite some time to compile and I look to all of you for help adding a particular submarine (or naval) museum, no matter how small. If you have one I don't have, pass me the name, location, and a link to their "official" web site, if you have it. If not, something decent is good enough!

    Of these, I can say I have visited many of them; USS Arizona (will add Missouri in two weeks!), USS Wisconsin, USS North Carolina, the ships at Patriot's Point (but not since the Cold War Memorial was erected, but I did visit the SS Savannah when she was still there!), USS Massachusetts, USS Lionfish, USS Joseph P Kennedy, USS Fall River, USS Alabama, USS Drum, USS Nautilus, HMS Belfast, Mystic Seaport, USS Barry, USS Constellation, USS Constitution. But, I am saddened by some I have been close to and missed (in San Diego, Buffalo, Long Beach).

    USS Albacore, SS-569, Portsmouth NH
    R/V Aluminaut, Science Museum of Virginia, Richmond, VA
    B-39 (Soviet Foxtrot), Maritime Museum of San Diego, San Diego, CA
    B-427 (Soviet Foxtrot), alongside the Queen Mary, Long Beach, CA
    USS Balao, SS-285, Balao Class, Conning Tower on display at the Washington Navy Yard, Washington, DC
    USS Batfish, SS-310, Balao Class, Muscogee, OK
    USS Becuna, SS-319, Balao Class, Independence Seaport Museum, Philadelphia, PA
    USS Blueback, SS-581, Barbel Class, Oregon Museum of Science and Industry, Portland, OR
    USS Bowfin, SS-287, Balao Class, Pearl Harbor, HI
    USS Cavalla, SS-244, Gato Class, Seawolf Park, Galveston, TX
    USS Clamagore, SS-343, Balao Class, Patriot's Point, Mt. Pleasant, SC
    USS Cobia, SS-245, Gato Class, Wisconsin Maritime Museum, Manitowoc, WI
    USS Cod, SS-224, Gato Class, Cleveland, OH
    USS Croaker, SS-246, Gato Class, Buffalo and Erie County Naval & Military Park, Buffalo, NY
    USS Drum, SS-228, Gato Class, Battleship Memorial Park, Mobile, AL
    Fenian Ram, Holland Designed Submarine, Paterson Museum, Paterson, NJ
    USS George Bancroft, SSBN-643, Franklin Class, sail at entrance to SUBASE King's Bay, St. Mary's, GA
    USS Growler, SSG-577, Intrepid Sea, Air, & Space Museum, New York, NY
    HA-19, Japanese Midget Sub, Ko-hyoteki Class, National Museum of the Pacific War, Fredricksburg, TX
    USS Marlin, SST-2, T-1 Class, Freedom Park, Omaha, NE
    USS Lionfish, SS-298, Balao Class, Battleship Cove, Fall River, MA
    K-77, Soviet Juliett Class, Collier Point Park, Providence, RI (note closed as the sub sunk at the pier during a storm)
    HMS Holland I, Royal Navy Submarine Museum, Gosport, UK
    USS Ling, SS-297, Balao Class, The New Jersey Naval Museum, Hackensack, NJ (note, apparently the museum is in danger of losing the Ling).
    USS Nathaniel Greene, SSBN-636, Sail only at entrance to Port Canaveral Naval Base
    USS Nautilus, SSN-571, US Navy Submarine Force Museum, Groton, CT
    USS Pampanito, SS-383, Balao Class, San Francisco Maritime National Park Ass., Fisherman's Wharf, San Francisco, CA
    USS Razorback, SS-394, Balao Class, Arkansas Inland Maritime Museum, Little Rock, AR
    USS Requin, SS-481, Tench Class, Carnegie Science Center, Pittsburgh, PA
    USS Silversides, SS-236, Gato Class, Great Lakes Naval Memorial & Museum, Muskegon, MI
    USS Torsk, SS-423, Tench Class, Baltimore Maritime Museum, Baltimore, MD
    Trieste, Bathyscape, Naval Historical Center, Washington, DC
    Trieste II, DSV-1, Naval Undersea Museum, Silverdale, WA
    U-505, Type IX-C, Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago, IL

    Submarine Museums and Memorials:
    Visit the USSVI Web Site to search for memorials by state
    St. Mary's Bay Submarine Museum, St. Mary's GA
    Cold War Memorial featuring replica of Franklin class SSBN, including sail and rudder from USS Lewis & Clark (SSBN-644), Patriot's Point, Mt. Pleasant SC
    USS Snook (SS-279) Memorial, Arkansas Inland Maritime Museum, Little Rock,AR
    Naval Undersea Museum, Silverside, WA, includes sail from USS Sturgeon (SSN-637) and control room from USS Greenling, SSN-614
    Fast Attacks and Boomers, Submarine Display at the Smithsonian Institute (H/T Lou)

    USS North Carolina, BB-55, North Carolina Class, Wilmington NC
    USS Alabama, BB-60, South Dakota class, Battleship Memorial Park, Mobile AL
    USS Massachusetts, BB-59, South Dakota Class, Battleship Cove, Fall River, MA
    USS Texas, BB-35, New York Class, La Porte, TX
    USS Missouri, BB-63, Iowa Class, Pearl Harbor, HI
    USS Arizona, BB-39, Pennsylvania Class, Pearl Harbor, HI
    USS Wisconsin, BB-64, Iowa Class, Nauticus, Norfolk, VA
    USS New Jersey, BB-62, Iowa Class, Camden, NJ
    USS Iowa, BB-61, Iowa Class, planned for display at the former Mare Island Naval Shipyard, thanks to the wussies in San Francisco not wanting her there

    USS Yorktown, CV-10, Essex Class, Patriot's Point, Mount Pleasant (Charleston) SC
    USS Midway, CV-41, Midway Class, San Diego CA
    USS Lexington, CV-16, Essex Class, Corpus Christi, TX
    USS Hornet, CV-12, Essex Class, Alameda, CA
    USS Intrepid, CV-11, Essex Class, Intrepid Sea-Air-Space Museum, New York, NY (being refitted until 11/2008)
    USS Saratoga, CV-60, Forrestal Class, Air Land & Sea Heritage and Technology Park, North Kingstown, RI (acquisition still in progress)
    USS Ranger, CV-61, Forrestal Class, the USS Ranger Foundation is trying to bring the Ranger to Portland, OR.
    USS John F. Kennedy, CV-67, Kitty Hawk Class; an effort is underway to bring the JFK either to Miami or Ft. Lauderdale

    USS Barry, DD-933, Forrest Sherman Class, Washington Navy Yard, Washington, DC
    USS Olympia, C-6, Independence Seaport Museum, Philadelphia, PA
    SS American Victory, Liberty Ship, Tampa, FL
    SS Jeremiah O'Brien, Liberty Ship, Fisherman's Wharf, San Francisco, CA
    SS Lane Victory, Liberty Ship, San Pedro, CA
    USS Cairo, Union Ironclad, Vicksburg, MS
    USS Cassin Young, DD-793, Fletcher Class, Boston Navy Yard, Boston, MA
    USS Laffey, DD-724, Sumner Class, Patriot's Point, Mt. Pleasant, SC
    USS Ingham, WHEC-25, Patriot's Point, Mt. Pleasant, SC
    Cold War Memorial, Replica of Franklin Class SSBN, Patriot's Point, Mt. Pleasant, SC
    USS Constellation, 1850's Corvette, Inner Harbor, Baltimore, MD
    USS Constitution, 1797 Frigate, Boston, MA
    USS Little Rock, CL-92, Cleveland Class, Buffalo&Erie County Naval & Military Park, Buffalo, NYUSS The Sullivans, DD-537, Fletcher Class, Buffalo&Erie County Naval & Military Park, Buffalo, NY
    USS Edson, DD-946, Sherman (Hull) Class, Wisconsin Naval Ship Association, Sheboygan, WI (Planned)
    USS Hazard, AM-240, Admirable Class, Freedom Park, Omaha, NE
    Hiddensee, Soviet Corvette, Taruntel I Class, Battleship Cove, Fall River, MA
    USS Joseph P. Kennedy, DD-850, Battleship Cove, Fall River, MA
    USS Fall River, CA-131, Battleship Cove, Fall River, MA (Bow only preserved)
    PT-796, Higgins Class PT Boat, PT-617, ELCO Class PT Boat, Battleship Cove, Fall River MA
    USS Kidd, DD-661, Fletcher Class, Louisiana Veterans Memorial, Baton Rouge, LA
    USS Potomac, AG-25, Presidential Yacht, Oakland, CA
    USS Salem, CA-139, Des Moines Class, U.S. Naval Shipbuilding Museum, Quincy, MA
    USCGS McLane, Great Lakes Naval Memorial & Museum, Muskegon, MI
    USS Slater, DE-766, Cannon Class, Albany, NY
    USS Stewart, DE-238, Edsall Class, Seawolf Park, Galveston, TX
    USCGS Sundew, WLB-404, Iris Class, Great Lakes Floating Maritime Museum, Duluth, MN
    USCGC Taney, WHEC-37, Treasury Class, Baltimore Maritime Museum, Baltimore, MD

    Honorable Mention (visited by me):
    HMS Belfast, C-35, Imperial War Museum, London, UK
    Churchill's War Rooms, London, UK
    Charles W. Morgan, Whaler, Mystic Seaport, Mystic, CT
    Emma C. Berry, Sloop, Mystic Seaport, Mystic, CT
    Joseph Conrad, Sailing Ship, Mystic Seaport, Mystic, CT
    Sabino, Coal Steamer, Mystic Seaport, Mystic, CT
    L.A. Dunton, Schooner, Mystic Seaport, Mystic, CT

    DoD Live Joins the 21st century

    Ok, I'll give a link to DoD Live (h/t Chapomatic). You might find this an interesting source for defense news and discussions. Welcome to the bubblesphere, DoD Live.

    Thursday, May 22, 2008

    Idol. Wrong again.

    As usual, my Idol prediction was wrong! But, my guy won, and by a sizable margin (as predicted on dialidol.com).

    Congrats, David Cook, and here's to downloading your next hit.

    Tuesday, May 20, 2008

    Idol Finale

    I realize we haven't posted on Idol much lately, as it came down to the inevitable Cook vs. Archuleta final, but tonight I will have a final say on the performances tonight, and my prediction for the winner tomorrow.

    David A was very good tonight and David C put in a decent performance, too. But, let's face it, based on tonight's performances, little David is and should be, the victor. Based on the performances from the entire season, I think he's the winner, too.

    Still, David Cook has nothing to be ashamed of. He has performed brilliantly, he has shown us the kind of music he will record, and I think he'll be successful with at least one album, in the Daughtry mold.

    I think David A will have at least one decent album, too. He is an amazing singer, and it'll be interesting to see what kinds of songs he is given to record. I'm not likely to buy them, but, the kids that are making the Jonas Brothers and Miley Cyrus rich will go for it. They might go for it until he turns 20, too. So, he could have a relatively long career ahead of him.

    So, congrats to both. It was obvious after David A did "Imagine" and David C did "Billy Jean" that these two were the class of this field.

    Idol is losing some of it's punch, but we found two performers who can be popular. We'll just have to wait and see if they can match Carrie Underwood, Kelly Clarkson, and Daughtry in their future success.

    Monday, May 19, 2008

    Great discussion on options with Iran, regardless of who the next POTUS is...

    Go over to Information Dissemination and read (or join) the discussion on our options vis a vis Iran. While I don't think Obama ought to be saying he's going to unilaterally meet with world leaders such as Ahmadinejad without some strings attached, the point is made that there are few options available to us.

    Sunday, May 18, 2008

    More Scorpion Conspiracies Bandied About...

    Today, the Virginian-Pilot runs an article peddling more Scorpion sunk by the Soviets conspiracies. With the bold headline, "New Evidence Suggest Soviets May Have Sunk the Sub Scorpion 40 Years Ago," the article goes on to present precisely ZERO new evidence. And, I will tell you why, because there is no evidence that the Soviets sank her, and there will be no evidence, because the Soviets did not sink her.

    I realize that some have tried to make lame arguments about her position in the water, and other completely nonsensical arguments, but, for a short while in the early 90's, I spent some time working with a Captain who was charged with unclassifying some of the details of the Scorpion and Thresher sinkings, in response to Soviet claims at the time that they wanted U.S. help in recovering one of their sunken submarines (I don't recall which). The basis of our analysis was to prove that we had two nuclear submarines lost, one with nuclear weapons on board (the Scorpion, that was one of the things that was declassified, press release here, some decent info here), and that the Russian argument that their submarine posed an environmental hazard and should be salvaged was B.S., since we had then almost 30 years of experience monitoring the wreckage sites of these two submarines.

    Anyway, while the Board of Inquiry could not definitively say what sunk Scorpion, the most likely scenario was a hot running torpedo, that either exploded in the tube, or that hit her soon after being released.

    I feel for for those loved ones who lost family members and have never been able to get a definitive answer for what happened in May 1968. Hell, we all served on these boats, we all knew what the dangers were. I think I feared a MK48 hot run more than any nuclear accident or attack, it was probably much more likely (except for a battery fire), but that is what happened in the Scorpion's case. I agree with Admiral Trost:

    “I think it’s totally unlikely. Nonsense. Let the families have some peace, instead of dragging it out with new speculation and books and queries of the families.”

    Update (5/19/08): There are some good comments over at Neptunus Lex's blog on this, go read them (H/T: The Subreport).

    Saturday, May 17, 2008

    Questions for Liberals:

    Ok, now that we are receiving our big fat checks from the Feds, I have a couple of questions for Liberals (ok, a lot more than two, but I was on a roll).

    How come, when economic Conservatives want to reduce taxes, you claim that lowering taxes will result in all hell breaking loose, usually in the form of lost revenue to the government, but, when it became necessary to do something to pick the economy back up, you guys are falling all over yourselves to push this "Economic Stimulus Package." (As an aside: To his credit, if you're a Liberal, Obama mainly was using it as an excuse to spend more taxpayer dollars on programs that wouldn't bear fruit for 5-50 years.) For info, I personally view this as a return of some of MY tax dollars, so I will be spending it on ME.

    The corollary to this is after 60 years of experience with cuts in the marginal tax rates (starting with JFK), we have always seen increases in government revenues. So, tax cuts lead to increased revenues to the government. You would think those interested in increasing the size and scope of government (read: Liberals) would like tax cuts, because it means more money for them to spend. The question: Why don't Liberals like tax cuts?

    Why do Liberals complain that the "Religious" right is out to control everything you do and legislate morality? How come those of us who are more on the "Economic" Right (and semi-religious) never get any credit for telling you what to do? I demand to be included in that group. I like telling people what to do. No tax cut for me? Ok, then, no soup (or Federally-funded Embryonic Stem Cell Research) for YOU!

    How come you guys on the "Secular" Left never get called out for legislating immorality? Anyway, aren't pretty much all of our laws derived from basic mores? Without that, what do have?

    Finally, Liberals seem determined to give Radical Islam a victory in Iraq, and perhaps in the larger War on Terror. Why do those who profess such love for Women's (Womyn's?) rights and secularism not feel threatened by this particular ideology? Do you not realize those are the first two things to go when the Global Caliphate is formed? Or, maybe you know you'll outlive the Christians and Jews, who will be the first slaughtered, and by then, you will have come up with that clever argument that will persuade the Ayatollah's why they should change their ways. Is that what you're thinking? If not, then what are you thinking?

    Just wondering....

    Acitivity on the export submarine front...

    Jane's (extract available) reports that "four of Europe's leading submarine design houses have now all sought to craft compact, highly automated 'entry-level' submarine concepts specifically engineered to reduce capital cost and support overhead and manning requirements. As well as appealing to navies looking to acquire a submarine capability for the first time, the rival contractors are also eyeing nations that may be looking to recapitalise their existing submarine arms."

    This is all because "The modern non-nuclear submarine is acknowledged to be a highly potent sea denial and intelligence gathering asset and, in the right hands, a very challenging adversary for even the best-equipped anti-submarine warfare (ASW) forces."

    An example Jane's uses is the SMX-23, from French builder DCNS. It's a 900 ton, 18-person, coastal defense submarine that will only set back the buyer about $300M. The French are also offering the Marlin, an update to the Scorpene, while the Spanish are busy rolling out the S80.

    . More...

    Dolphin to become memorial

    Since it's a slow Saturday, I will note that the research submarine, Dolphin, was saved by the Maritime Museum of San Diego and will be joining their "fleet." Since the Dolphin's pretty darn old (commissioned in 1968) it is no betrayal of my ancientness to admit my Weps served his JO tour on her. It's nice to know another submarine has been saved from the scrap heap.

    Wednesday, May 14, 2008

    Indians about to join SLBM club, for real...

    The Indians are ready to test fire their first true SLBM. Expect a test launch early in 2009.

    2 Virginia's per year starting in 2010

    Republicans try to get Virginia production to 2 by 2010, and stay there...

    "Republicans on the House Armed Services Committee today will attempt to add advanced procurement funding for an additional Virginia Class Submarine. The $422 million would allow the Navy to purchase long-lead items needed to allow the defense industrial base to build an additional submarine in 2011."

    They were successful, (see this) "
    During the first hours of what is expected to be a long markup of the FY09 defense authorization bill, the panel easily approved the submarine funding, which essentially would serve as a down payment for a second submarine in FY11. The funding comes after the Seapower Subcommittee endorsed an amendment last week from Rep. Joe Courtney, D-Conn., that added $300 million to FY09 submarine accounts for a second submarine in FY10. Courtney, whose district includes submarine builder Electric Boat, joined forces today with House Armed Services ranking member Duncan Hunter, who had initially planned to trim funding from an LPD-17 amphibious warfare ship the Seapower panel added to the bill to pay for the additional submarine. But before today's markup, Hunter redirected the offset to the National Defense Sealift Fund, which would pay for two additional T-AKE auxiliary dry cargo dock carriers that the Seapower panel added to the bill last week. Seapower Subcommittee Chairman Gene Taylor, D-Miss., said he believes the Navy still will be able to buy the two additional T-AKE vessels."

    Saturday, May 10, 2008

    Preparing for the century of Asian dominance...

    I will make no secret of my respect for the Indians. As we enter a century that is going to be dominated by the Chinese and Indians, I am thankful that we have begun the process of aligning ourselves with the Indians. This is a country that has established a democratic tradition, is filled with human capital, and who I believe recognizes their importance in the 21st century. I think as we move forward, we are all going to thank the Bush administration for one of their more prescient foreign policy moves, the strengthening of ties between our two countries. This ultimately has benefits for the U.S. as we have a strong, democratic global partner, and for our defense industry, if we can yank business away from the Russians, who have a long-term relationship as India's arms supplier.

    So, this article discusses briefly the Indian Navy's leader and his worries as the Indian defense budget (though rising, is below 2% of GDP) is less able to sustain the desired ship buildup (sound familiar?). It's heartening to me that the Indians recognize that the quickest way to sea dominance is through the continued building of submarines, and, yes, nuclear ones. India is still planning to lease Akula class subs from the Russians. Of course, since my interest in the Indian Navy is newfound, I didn't realize that India has been trying to complete this Akula lease since 2004 (article and discussion).

    Now, the Indians have signed a $2.2B deal to buy 8 P-8's from the U.S.

    Nothing after...

    Wednesday, May 7, 2008

    Couple of submarine books, one new, one old

    The Boston Herald reviews Escape from the Deep: The Epic Story of a Legendary Submarine and Her Courageous Crew” (Da Capo Press, $26), best-selling author Alex Kershaw takes the reader aboard the ill-fated USS Tang (SS-306), one of the most highly decorated submarines during the war.

    Speaking of books (and I'm still looking for Submarines for Dummies), if you don't have a copy of the Navy's official contemporaneous account of submarine operations in WW2, "United States Submarine Operations in World War II," you should get it.

    Friday, May 2, 2008

    Arianna Huffington is a big idiot

    What is with Arianna Huffington? AS I sit here waiting to catch a plane, she is on The Situation Room, with Wolf Blitzed, and she just decried Hillary Clinton's use of the 3am ad as a page out of the Karl Rove playbook and something he had done against John Kerrey. Doesn't she remember this was run in 1984 against Gary Hart by the Mondull campaign, in fact, an ad almost identical to the one Hillary ran.

    Why do we allow these leftists get away with outright lies. By the way, Wolf let he slide, too. As a matter of fact, he basically let her filibuster his show for 4 minutes.

    Thursday, May 1, 2008

    ASDS-1 operates from SSGN. Finally!

    In what can be characterized in the "good news" department, the first Advanced Seal Delivery System (ASDS-1) has finally passed an operational test on the USS Michigan. This oft-maligned and expensive program may have turned a corner. Or, it may not have...


    NC Commissioning this weekend...

    There are a bevy of stories today about the USS North Carrolina (SSN-777) commissioning, which is Saturday in Wilmington, NC. Here's an official Navy photo of the crew practicing their salute.

    Of course, you can read the official Navy announcement article, check out the sailors touring Wilmington (from there, you can see an interview with the Skipper, CAPT Mark Davis). And, the Wilmington Star-News has a nice piece about the WW2 vets of the USS North Carolina (BB-56) passing the torch to the USS North Carolina (SSN-777).


    Quick Idol Post

    Last night gave us our final four, and I was wrong about Syesha and Brooke. Of course, dialidol.com was right about Brooke. She didn't falter like Kelly Pickler did and just become unbearable, but, he cuteness wore off, and Syesha had really been putting in solid, if not greatly memorable, performances. So, of the girls, and the right to finish 4th, Syesha probably deserved to stay. Can she push our Jason Castro and get into the top 3? I don't know. He must have a heck of a fan base, because he has been pulling the Pickler the last few weeks. Each performance is more tortured than the last.

    So, Syesha has earned her way into the final four, David and David were foregone conclusions, and Jason, well, he's the popular one this year. I expect we'll see an Archuleta vs. Cook showdown, but at that point, it really won't matter, as I predict they'll both have very, very popular 1st albums.

    I agree with the judges, Syesha is headed to Broadway and probably a pretty good career there, or even acting. Jason? I don't know, he might be back washing dishes in a month.

    Nothing after the jump!