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Why the USS Roosevelt’s
Captain Had To Be Relieved

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Posted By: MissMolly, 4/3/2020 4:59:13 AM

The decision of American Navy to relieve the captain who warned publicly of coronavirus on his nuclear-powered aircraft carrier strikes us as the right move. We get that it’s a sad setback for an officer in an incredible command. The minute we read the captain’s letter about the crisis on United States Ship Theodore Roosevelt, though, we saw it as a breach on a matter that should have been kept within the chain of command. That’s easy to say, we understand, for a newspaper whose landlubber of an editor can’t go to Jones Beach without getting seasick. We’ve followed the reports that Democrats on the House Armed Services Committee

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Reply 1 - Posted by: watashiyo 4/3/2020 5:30:29 AM (No. 366769)
Well, he wasn't fired. So he's still good.
7 people like this.

Reply 2 - Posted by: ussjimmycarter 4/3/2020 5:58:41 AM (No. 366778)
His boss was a couple of doors down the hall...but he chose to send out a non-secure email so that it would be leaked to the press? Maybe it was necessary...and if so I commend him for putting his crew over his career! If he just went over his bosses head without a discussion, however that is NOT cool!!! We will never know the truth! Even if the press finds it...they will never report it unless it makes Trump look bad!
35 people like this.

Reply 3 - Posted by: BruceInWorcester 4/3/2020 6:29:02 AM (No. 366794)
#1, oh yeah, he’s been “fired.” It takes a while, but he’s out. Normally, a captain given command of a carrier is on his way up—he’d get an important staff job in Washington next, get promoted to rear admiral, then executive officer of a carrier task force after that, command of the task force after that.... But now he'll get a staff job in the pentagon doing something like making sure our plans for the invasion of Botswana are kept up to date. He won’t be promoted to vice admiral after three years, and will fail to be promoted the following period—then he will be forced to resign. It’s up or out. If he already has twenty years in, he'll resign ASAP. He knows he’s done.
38 people like this.

Reply 4 - Posted by: chumley 4/3/2020 6:39:25 AM (No. 366799)
Hes not a brand new swabbie right out of high school. Hes been around and knows the system well. He would not have written that letter if he believed the military was taking his concerns seriously. Paper pushers very often blow off the concerns of the people who do the real work. Remember when the soldiers couldn't get body armor? Regular citizens started sending it to them and embarrassed the army into finally sending it. This captain was doing what he had to, to take care of his sailors and his ship. He put them above his career and will pay the price for his loyalty. He should be promoted, not drummed out.
12 people like this.

Reply 5 - Posted by: GO3 4/3/2020 6:56:58 AM (No. 366812)
From this article it seems the skipper was, at a minimum flummoxed, at max he was panicky. If carriers and the air group are at the tip of the spear as advertised, then readiness for war is paramount. He did a "reply all" and that was that. Not following the chain of command is a no-no, and we don't know if he was ignored or not. I saw the same thing on the part of a few officers during the H1N1 flu. Here we had service members in combat around the globe and these guys were acting like 8th grade school girls who were scared of their own shadows - like now.
10 people like this.

Reply 6 - Posted by: Gruntmedic 4/3/2020 7:05:02 AM (No. 366821)
He was probably promoted under Barry.
24 people like this.

Reply 7 - Posted by: Gruntmedic 4/3/2020 7:06:46 AM (No. 366823)
If you're relieved of Command, your life is over. He quietly retire as he will not be given any more Commands.
28 people like this.

Reply 8 - Posted by: Sergeant Major 4/3/2020 7:12:10 AM (No. 366827)
#2 Yes his boss was just a couple doors away. That says that the two undoubtedly talk about many things, including this. There is a distinct possibility that the Captain didn't get any help from his immediate superior and decided, career be damned, and send this letter the way he did. I really believe there is much more to this story than what we have been allowed to see. Not unusual in this world of managed news.
24 people like this.

Reply 9 - Posted by: DCGIRL 4/3/2020 7:13:49 AM (No. 366829)
So, please tell me CAPT what you would have done if the same thing occurred during the normal flu season? You would have had your crew treated medically and make the best of it. So, why is this any different? It isn't. This CAPT should be ran out of the Navy. No sympathy here. He must be an Obama holdover. Also, the 50 crew members that tested positive are young and most likely do not have an underlying condition. They will probably recover just fine.
23 people like this.

Reply 10 - Posted by: Lazyman 4/3/2020 7:17:43 AM (No. 366833)
Telling your enemies what your weakness is doesn't seem like a smart move. The needs of the many (USA) are more important in the big picture. 0 killed our military but at least they haven't run into each other at sea for awhile.
15 people like this.

Reply 11 - Posted by: chumley 4/3/2020 7:36:58 AM (No. 366847)
And this right here is why nobody should ever join the military. Not only will you die for nothing, you will die for nothing and nobody will care once the cameras are gone.
2 people like this.

Reply 12 - Posted by: Urgent Fury 4/3/2020 7:44:43 AM (No. 366856)
My old carrier CO would have just stared at us until we immediately got better.
25 people like this.

Reply 13 - Posted by: judy 4/3/2020 7:47:30 AM (No. 366860)
He was following Cuomo's lead...list all you gripes on TV & not call the real problem solvers.
9 people like this.

Reply 14 - Posted by: Jesuslover54 4/3/2020 7:59:04 AM (No. 366873)
Pooch screwed. Very sad.
3 people like this.

Reply 15 - Posted by: LadyVet 4/3/2020 8:33:17 AM (No. 366913)
Wow, #11. That is cynical.
7 people like this.

Reply 16 - Posted by: pigop 4/3/2020 8:40:12 AM (No. 366920)
Career ender for any COs relieved of command. There is only 12 of these command opportunities, carrier COs. Correct call would have been isolate the infected crew, continue testing while keeping the carrier at sea. Continue SITREP to chain of command on the secret network, ask for assistance as necessary. I am sure he would have gotten it flown onboard. It’s a front line carrier on deployment for God’s sake! Here comes CNN analyst job for this guy.
19 people like this.

Reply 17 - Posted by: TLCary 4/3/2020 8:55:14 AM (No. 366938)
No-one that made it to that chair made this 'mistake'. This was a strategy. 1. Play to the media to embarrass President Trump and become a Democrat hero overnight 2. Return home to a Democrat heavy district and run for office by reminding everyone over and over again that he is a veteran (Kerry/Butty) The quicker he can exit the military and enter the weekend news talk shows - the better for him.
10 people like this.

Reply 18 - Posted by: Jebediah 4/3/2020 9:08:47 AM (No. 366965)
It seems to me that the Navy could have handled this better, with a quiet reprimand or whatever......90% of us will not understand their behavior. It makes them look terrible and uncaring....and to poster #1, he is not still good....his career is ruined.
1 person likes this.

Reply 19 - Posted by: JL80863 4/3/2020 9:14:21 AM (No. 366970)
Some nobody democrat politician immediately "demanded" that he be returned to command. That explains a lot.
2 people like this.

Reply 20 - Posted by: kdog 4/3/2020 9:27:33 AM (No. 366989)
This letter that sounds so simple now was headlined as "Captain PLEADS for help". It characterized his crew as dying and NO ONE would listen to him. My impression was that it was politically motivated to make his chain of command up to the Commander in Chief look incompetent and inept, and that HE was the only one who "cared". For the optics alone, were I his CO I would have been putting my aircraft on his deck asap with his relief. That letter was purely politics.
18 people like this.

Reply 21 - Posted by: Bluefindad 4/3/2020 9:32:56 AM (No. 366995)
Sorry, this captain absolutely deserved what he got. In considering the safety of his crew with respect to the number of potential casualties, his panic was completely unjustified. Sailors at sea are not in risk factor categories - they are young and healthy. The ship might have been weakened if a fair number were simultaneously sick, but not mortally wounded. Even if too many were sick for operations to continue, he could have pulled into Guam without alerting our enemies that the carrier was not operational. The world is becoming more dangerous. Every high-ranking officer is aware of China's vast military build-up. The Chinese view us as wounded with our economy in shambles. We do not need to tell them our military readiness is compromised as well.
25 people like this.

Reply 22 - Posted by: VirtuDawg 4/3/2020 9:40:30 AM (No. 367009)
As a former Surface Warfare Officer, serving aboard a guided missile destroyer and guided missile cruiser, I totally agree with relieving this CO for cause. He should have handled this within the chain of command, and never have publicly indicated a lack of combat readiness of his command. This is a case of poor command judgement, and should never be tolerated by our Navy.
27 people like this.

Reply 23 - Posted by: Historybuff 4/3/2020 9:57:07 AM (No. 367030)
Publicly announcing that your machine of war is NOT ready to fight is not wise. Let his XO stand up and take command.
13 people like this.

Reply 24 - Posted by: happywarrior 4/3/2020 10:00:17 AM (No. 367034)
Loose lips sink ships.
12 people like this.

Reply 25 - Posted by: DVC 4/3/2020 10:09:02 AM (No. 367048)
#1, do you think being removed from a major command isn't "fired"? His career is over. Back when my father was a USN officer, decades ago, a senior officer who was relieved of a major command like this would be moved to the command of a naval base somewhere. Sounds like not too big of a come-down, right? Until you find that the ships or planes on the base, and all the people to fix them and operate them are NOT under his chain of command, and almost the only thing he does command is the gate guards and the folks who mow the lawns. After a few years of that....retire.
4 people like this.

Reply 26 - Posted by: Rumblehog 4/3/2020 10:10:34 AM (No. 367050)
Nothing like telling the enemy, uh-hmm, China, that your Aircraft Carrier is dead in the water. So, please invade Taiwan, we're all sick with your Woohoo virus. Relieving him of command is going too easy on this guy. What shills did Obama's Pentagon promote? Ship crashers and flutter-lips.
14 people like this.

Reply 27 - Posted by: bigfatslob 4/3/2020 10:45:31 AM (No. 367109)
He probably knew the consequences of his actions so he wrote the letter now he can spend more time with his family because captain of the mess hall is not a glorious job to report to.
2 people like this.

Reply 28 - Posted by: stablemoney 4/3/2020 10:55:14 AM (No. 367124)
The captain should have been relieved of his duties---but thanks for not crashing the ship into any other vessels during your tenure.
6 people like this.

Reply 29 - Posted by: bpl40 4/3/2020 11:03:19 AM (No. 367145)
A man like Gen. McArthur was relieved of command. For exactly similar reasons. Chain of command means exactly that. Otherwise we have chaos.
10 people like this.

Reply 30 - Posted by: bighambone 4/3/2020 12:09:47 PM (No. 367215)
The combat ready status of a deployed aircraft carrier is normally highly classified national security information, even though the combat ready status of the ship was caused by a natural epidemic or a possible bioweapons attack on the USA, and the ship’s crew, by unidentified foreign actors. In accordance with common sense, naval regulations, and traditions of the Navy such national security information should have been considered to be highly classified information by the Ship’s captain, who instead composed the letter in question and then distributed it, not only to his chain of command that was already working on the problem, but also among reportedly to about 20 of his friends via insecure e-mail channels. Clearly one of the recipients of letter then leaked it to the media. That’s where the rub came in, and caused the Navy to loose confidence in the Captain’s ability to continue to command that ship because of his demonstrated obvious lack of judgement when under stress.
6 people like this.

Reply 31 - Posted by: FL_Absentee_Voter 4/3/2020 12:53:47 PM (No. 367253)
He made a big-time mistake. Period. Not at war? Only because the strategic asset he's been entrusted to command is out there. It's called "presence" in Naval vernacular. The fact is, many of his young and healthy crew are in more danger of dying on the flight deck during ops than from this virus. #30 - not "normally". The material and personnel readiness of a deployed warship is ALWAYS classified information. The ChiComs are no doubt high-fiving one another this week. Without even trying, they managed to chase a nuclear-powered carrier and its wing of strike aircraft into port.
7 people like this.

Reply 32 - Posted by: enemyofthestate 4/3/2020 1:07:42 PM (No. 367270)
I would hate to be serving on that ship right now (I served on an aircraft carrier, Tonkin Gulf Yacht Club). Morale must be zero.
2 people like this.

Reply 33 - Posted by: pensom2 4/3/2020 1:14:06 PM (No. 367274)
This guy was captain of an enormous ship that cost $4.7 to build in 2007 dollars. He has a couple of billion dollars in planes and equipment aboard the ship. He has responsibility for enough personnel on board to fill a good-sized American town. Yet he lets himself get panicked by a virus that rarely kills young people of the age of his sailors, pilots, and other personnel. His panic reveals his unworthiness to captain such a magnificent craft with such a crucial mission.
7 people like this.

Reply 34 - Posted by: DVC 4/3/2020 2:04:23 PM (No. 367342)
#28, the most common way that a ship's captain got relieved years ago was running the ship aground. The standard joke was that they when they gave them command of a Navy base "See if he can run THAT aground!".
2 people like this.

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