United States Navy
The United States Navy is the naval warfare service branch of the United States Armed Forces and one of the seven uniformed services of the United States. It is the largest and most capable navy in the world and it has been estimated that in terms of tonnage of its active battle fleet alone, it is larger than the next 13 navies combined, which includes 11 U. S. allies or partner nations. With the highest combined battle fleet tonnage and the world's largest aircraft carrier fleet, with eleven in service, two new carriers under construction. With 319,421 personnel on active duty and 99,616 in the Ready Reserve, the Navy is the third largest of the service branches, it has 282 deployable combat vessels and more than 3,700 operational aircraft as of March 2018, making it the second-largest air force in the world, after the United States Air Force. The U. S. Navy traces its origins to the Continental Navy, established during the American Revolutionary War and was disbanded as a separate entity shortly thereafter.
The U. S. Navy played a major role in the American Civil War by blockading the Confederacy and seizing control of its rivers, it played the central role in the World War II defeat of Imperial Japan. The US Navy emerged from World War II as the most powerful navy in the world; the 21st century U. S. Navy maintains a sizable global presence, deploying in strength in such areas as the Western Pacific, the Mediterranean, the Indian Ocean, it is a blue-water navy with the ability to project force onto the littoral regions of the world, engage in forward deployments during peacetime and respond to regional crises, making it a frequent actor in U. S. foreign and military policy. The Navy is administratively managed by the Department of the Navy, headed by the civilian Secretary of the Navy; the Department of the Navy is itself a division of the Department of Defense, headed by the Secretary of Defense. The Chief of Naval Operations is the most senior naval officer serving in the Department of the Navy.
The mission of the Navy is to maintain and equip combat-ready Naval forces capable of winning wars, deterring aggression and maintaining freedom of the seas. The U. S. Navy is a seaborne branch of the military of the United States; the Navy's three primary areas of responsibility: The preparation of naval forces necessary for the effective prosecution of war. The maintenance of naval aviation, including land-based naval aviation, air transport essential for naval operations, all air weapons and air techniques involved in the operations and activities of the Navy; the development of aircraft, tactics, technique and equipment of naval combat and service elements. U. S. Navy training manuals state that the mission of the U. S. Armed Forces is "to be prepared to conduct prompt and sustained combat operations in support of the national interest." As part of that establishment, the U. S. Navy's functions comprise sea control, power projection and nuclear deterrence, in addition to "sealift" duties, it follows as certain as that night succeeds the day, that without a decisive naval force we can do nothing definitive, with it, everything honorable and glorious.
Naval power... is the natural defense of the United States The Navy was rooted in the colonial seafaring tradition, which produced a large community of sailors and shipbuilders. In the early stages of the American Revolutionary War, Massachusetts had its own Massachusetts Naval Militia; the rationale for establishing a national navy was debated in the Second Continental Congress. Supporters argued that a navy would protect shipping, defend the coast, make it easier to seek out support from foreign countries. Detractors countered that challenging the British Royal Navy the world's preeminent naval power, was a foolish undertaking. Commander in Chief George Washington resolved the debate when he commissioned the ocean-going schooner USS Hannah to interdict British merchant ships and reported the captures to the Congress. On 13 October 1775, the Continental Congress authorized the purchase of two vessels to be armed for a cruise against British merchant ships. S. Navy; the Continental Navy achieved mixed results.
In August 1785, after the Revolutionary War had drawn to a close, Congress had sold Alliance, the last ship remaining in the Continental Navy due to a lack of funds to maintain the ship or support a navy. In 1972, the Chief of Naval Operations, Admiral Elmo Zumwalt, authorized the Navy to celebrate its birthday on 13 October to honor the establishment of the Continental Navy in 1775; the United States was without a navy for nearly a decade, a state of affairs that exposed U. S. maritime merchant ships to a series of attacks by the Barbary pirates. The sole armed maritime presence between 1790 and the launching of the U. S. Navy's first warships in 1797 was the U. S. Revenue-Marine, the primary predecessor of the U. S. Coast Guard. Although the USRCS conducted operations against the pirates, their depredations far outstripped its abilities and Congress passed the Naval Act of 1794 that established a permanent standing navy on 27 March 1794; the Naval Act ordered the construction and manning of six frigates and, by October 1797, the first three were brought into service: USS United States, USS Constellation, USS Constitution.
Due to his strong posture on having a strong standing Navy during this period, John Adams is "often called the father of the American Navy". In 1798–99 the Navy was involved in an undeclared Quasi-War with France. From 18
USS Aggressive (MSO-422)
USS Aggressive was the lead ship of the Aggressive-class minesweeper. She is the only ship of the United States Navy to be named Aggressive; this was regarded as a mistake by President John F. Kennedy who stated that the ships should only be employed for "Peace keeping", she was built by Luders Marine Construction Co. of Stamford, sponsored by Mrs. Stephen M. Archer, commissioned at Brooklyn, New York, in the New York Naval Shipyard, Lt. Lawrence W. Kelley in command. For most of 1954, Aggressive remained in the shipyard for alteration. In February 1955, her designation was changed to MSO-422, her first deployment afterwards, had her take part in a mine warfare exercise off the south-east coast of the United States. She took part in the landing of American forces during the Lebanon crisis of 1958; the ship was home ported at Charleston for her whole naval career. She provided services to the Naval Mine Warfare School, Charleston. Aggressive took part in several fleet exercises and operations along the Atlantic coast and in the Caribbean.
On 1 October 1970, preparations to deactivate the ship were begun, she was decommissioned on 2 July 1971. Her name was struck from the Navy list on 28 February 1975, she was sold to R. E. Williams in May 1980; this article incorporates text from the public domain Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. The entry can be found here. Photo gallery of USS Aggressive at NavSource Naval History hazegray.org: USS Aggressive
USS Endurance (AM-435)
USS Endurance was an Aggressive-class minesweeper acquired by the U. S. Navy for the task of removing mines from waters, placed there to prevent the safe passage of ships; the second ship to be named Endurance by the Navy, AM-435 was launched 8 August 1952 by J. M. Martinac Shipbuilding Corp. Tacoma, Washington, she was reclassified MSO-435 on 7 February 1955. On 21 April 1954, Endurance arrived at Long Beach, her home port, began training operations along the southern coast of California. In July 1955 she made a good will cruise to Acapulco, returning to local duty on exercises and operations with ships of other types. Endurance made her first cruise to the Far East between August 1957 and February 1958, during which she exercised with ships of the Japanese Maritime Self Defense Force and the navy of the Republic of China, her second tour of duty in the Far East, from January through July 1960, included minesweeping exercises at Okinawa, another period of assistance to the Chinese navy in developing their modern mine warfare techniques.
Arriving at Long Beach on 19 July, the remainder of the year was given to operations and ship overhaul. On 13 Jun 1969, in Subic Bay, Philippines, USS Endurance was accidentally rammed by a Royal Navy submarine, HMS Rorqual with minor damage. Endurance was stricken 1 July 1972 and disposed of by Navy sale December 1973; this article incorporates text from the public domain Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. The entry can be found here. NavSource Online: Mine Warfare Vessel Photo Archive - Endurance - ex-AM-435 USS Endurance website
In naval terminology, a destroyer is a fast, maneuverable long-endurance warship intended to escort larger vessels in a fleet, convoy or battle group and defend them against smaller powerful short-range attackers. They were developed in the late 19th century by Fernando Villaamil for the Spanish Navy as a defense against torpedo boats, by the time of the Russo-Japanese War in 1904, these "torpedo boat destroyers" were "large and powerfully armed torpedo boats designed to destroy other torpedo boats". Although the term "destroyer" had been used interchangeably with "TBD" and "torpedo boat destroyer" by navies since 1892, the term "torpedo boat destroyer" had been shortened to "destroyer" by nearly all navies by the First World War. Before World War II destroyers were light vessels with little endurance for unattended ocean operations. After the war, the advent of the guided missile allowed destroyers to take on the surface combatant roles filled by battleships and cruisers; this resulted in larger and more powerful guided missile destroyers more capable of independent operation.
At the start of the 21st century, destroyers are the global standard for surface combatant ships, with only two nations operating the heavier class cruisers, with no battleships or true battlecruisers remaining. Modern guided missile destroyers are equivalent in tonnage but vastly superior in firepower to cruisers of the World War II era, are capable of carrying nuclear tipped cruise missiles. At 510 feet long, a displacement of 9,200 tons, with armament of more than 90 missiles, guided missile destroyers such as the Arleigh Burke-class are larger and more armed than most previous ships classified as guided missile cruisers; some European navies, such as the French, Spanish, or German, use the term "frigate" for their destroyers, which leads to some confusion. The emergence and development of the destroyer was related to the invention of the self-propelled torpedo in the 1860s. A navy now had the potential to destroy a superior enemy battle fleet using steam launches to fire torpedoes. Cheap, fast boats armed with torpedoes called torpedo boats were built and became a threat to large capital ships near enemy coasts.
The first seagoing vessel designed to launch the self-propelled Whitehead torpedo was the 33-ton HMS Lightning in 1876. She was armed with two drop collars to launch these weapons, these were replaced in 1879 by a single torpedo tube in the bow. By the 1880s, the type had evolved into small ships of 50–100 tons, fast enough to evade enemy picket boats. At first, the threat of a torpedo boat attack to a battle fleet was considered to exist only when at anchor. In response to this new threat, more gunned picket boats called "catchers" were built which were used to escort the battle fleet at sea, they needed significant seaworthiness and endurance to operate with the battle fleet, as they became larger, they became designated "torpedo boat destroyers", by the First World War were known as "destroyers" in English. The anti-torpedo boat origin of this type of ship is retained in its name in other languages, including French, Portuguese, Greek, Dutch and, up until the Second World War, Polish. Once destroyers became more than just catchers guarding an anchorage, it was realized that they were ideal to take over the role of torpedo boats themselves, so they were fitted with torpedo tubes as well as guns.
At that time, into World War I, the only function of destroyers was to protect their own battle fleet from enemy torpedo attacks and to make such attacks on the battleships of the enemy. The task of escorting merchant convoys was still in the future. An important development came with the construction of HMS Swift in 1884 redesignated TB 81; this was a large torpedo boat with three torpedo tubes. At 23.75 knots, while still not fast enough to engage enemy torpedo boats reliably, the ship at least had the armament to deal with them. Another forerunner of the torpedo boat destroyer was the Japanese torpedo boat Kotaka, built in 1885. Designed to Japanese specifications and ordered from the Glasgow Yarrow shipyards in 1885, she was transported in parts to Japan, where she was assembled and launched in 1887; the 165-foot long vessel was armed with four 1-pounder quick-firing guns and six torpedo tubes, reached 19 knots, at 203 tons, was the largest torpedo boat built to date. In her trials in 1889, Kotaka demonstrated that she could exceed the role of coastal defense, was capable of accompanying larger warships on the high seas.
The Yarrow shipyards, builder of the parts for Kotaka, "considered Japan to have invented the destroyer". The first vessel designed for the explicit purpose of hunting and destroying torpedo boats was the torpedo gunboat. Small cruisers, torpedo gunboats were equipped with torpedo tubes and an adequate gun armament, intended for hunting down smaller enemy boats. By the end of the 1890s torpedo gunboats were made obsolete by their more successful contemporaries, the torpedo boat destroyers, which were much faster; the first example of this was HMS Rattlesnake, designed by Nathaniel Barnaby in 1885, commissioned in response to the Russian War scare. The gunboat was armed with torpedoes and designed for hunting and destroying
USS Avenge (AM-423)
USS Avenge was an Agile-class minesweeper acquired by the U. S. Navy for the task of clearing mines, placed in the water to prevent the safe passage of ships; the second ship to be named Avenge by the Navy, AM-423 was laid down on 1 August 1951 at Stamford, Connecticut, by the Luders Marine Construction Co.. Avenge was reclassified as Ocean Minesweeper MSO-423 on 14 January 1955. After completing shakedown training, the minesweeper sailed on 6 August for her home port, South Carolina, arrived there on 8 August, she conducted local operations until entering the Charleston Naval Shipyard on 14 January 1955 for conversion. During this period, her designation was changed to MSO-423, before she resumed her activities in April and began preparations for deployment. On 6 September, Avenge sailed for the Mediterranean, her ports of call during that deployment with the U. S. 6th Fleet included Gibraltar. The ship arrived back in Charleston on the 31st. Following leave and upkeep, the ship sailed on 9 April for the coast of Nova Scotia and participated in minesweeping operations off Halifax before getting underway on 14 May to return to her home port.
The vessel operated for two months in the Charleston area left on 16 July to return to Canadian waters. She spent two months assisting in survey and beach clearance operations in connection with DEW line radar sites; the ship left St. Johns, Newfoundland, on 4 September, arrived back in Charleston on 11 September. Avenge returned to Argentia, Newfoundland, on 15 January 1957, took part in cold weather minesweeping operations, got underway for New York on 30 January, she held local operations through 29 August. On that day, the minesweeper sailed for the Mediterranean. After reaching Gibraltar, she visited Malta. While deployed with the 6th Fleet, she conducted joint exercises with the Italian Navy at Gaeta, she held combined operations with the Royal Navy at Malta in January 1958. After five months in the Mediterranean, Avenge returned to Charleston on 13 February. In late March, the ship took part in amphibious exercises at Onslow Beach, North Carolina, in mine exercises at Little Creek, Virginia.
Avenge departed Charleston on 11 January 1959, bound for Savannah, where she arrived on the 12th and entered the shipyard of the Savannah Machine and Foundry Co. for overhaul. The minesweeper returned to Charleston on 14 March for refresher training. During May and June, she took part in a mine test in the Charleston area before sailing once more on 24 July for the Mediterranean. While on duty with the 6th Fleet, Avenge took part in numerous exercises; the largest came in Octoter at La Spezia, when she joined units of the French, Turkish and Italian navies in Exercise "Gauge." She returned to Charleston on 11 February 1960. The ship departed Charleston on 23 May to participate in the Caribbean. In July, she carried out an assignment off Cape Canaveral and proceeded to her home port for overhaul. Avenge headed back to the Caribbean in January 1961 for amphibious exercises which lasted well into February. After returning home, she made an unscheduled deployment to the Caribbean in April in response to a political crisis in the Dominican Republic and did not get back to Charleston until August.
Thereafter, type training and minesweeping exercises off the South Carolina coast kept her busy through the end of 1961. In January 1962, Avenge operated from Panama City, providing services for the Naval Mine Defense Laboratory and reported back to her home port in February. Following an overhaul, she returned to Panama City in August. Intensive minesweeping training exercises in company with Mine Division 82 occupied her time in October and November. Early in January 1963, the ship took 19 days to cross the Atlantic due to winter storms as she embarked upon another Mediterranean tour during which she took part in several combined exercises and visited ports in Italy and France. Avenge participated in NATO Exercise "Fair Game" before returning to Charleston on 5 June. Following leave and upkeep, she proceeded to Panama City to work with the Naval Mine Defense Laboratory; the minesweeper reported back to Charleston on 20 November and began preparations for a deployment to the Caribbean. Avenge won the Marjorie Sterrett Award as best ship of type in the Atlantic Fleet for 1963.
In February 1964, the vessel began a two-month cruise to the Caribbean, working put of Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. She arrived back in Charleston in April for leave and upkeep and entered the naval shipyard at Charleston in May for repairs which were followed by refresher training and local operations. In late December, Avenge got underway for the Caribbean, she visited Guantanamo Bay. The end of 1964 found Avenge anchored at Saint Croix, in the American Virgin Islands. During January and February 1965, Avenge operated out of Guantanamo Bay before arriving back at Charleston in March and resuming a full schedule of training exercises and operations. In August, she was part of the Gemini V recovery force off Florida. In early December, the minesweeper took part in an amphibious exercise off Vieques, Puerto Rico, before returning to her home p
The Aggressive-class minesweepers are a class of US-built minesweepers. They are designated as MSO, distinguishing them from inshore MSIs. Besides the US Navy, this class of vessels has been used by the Belgian Navy and the Norwegian Navy, among others. Minesweeping, or the disposal of naval mines, by these vessels is performed in different ways: Sweeping proper, with an underwater cable cutting the mooring cables of floating mines; the mines come to the surface and are destroyed by gunfire. Acoustic sweeping, with a towed device producing noise to trigger acoustic mines. Magnetic sweeping, with a towed device producing a magnetic field to trigger magnetic mines. To protect the minesweeper itself against magnetic mines, the hull of the ship is made of wood. Of the 53 constructed for the United States Navy, 10 were built at Higgins Corp. New Orleans, Louisiana, 9 at J. M. Martinac Shipbuilding Corp. Tacoma, Washington, 8 at Wilmington Boat Works Inc. Wilmington, California, 6 at Luders Marine Construction Co. of Stamford, Connecticut, 4 at Broward Marine Inc, Fort Lauderdale, Florida, 4 at Martinolich Shipbuilding Co.
San Diego, California, 3 at Burger Boat Company, Wisconsin, 3 at Colberg Boat Works, California, 2 at Fulton Shipyard, California, 2 at Norfolk Naval Shipyard and 2 at Seattle Shipbuilding and Drydocking Co. Seattle, Washington. 33 of the class were decommissioned before the mid-1970s. Four ex-USN ships were sold to the Republic of China Navy 1994 and re-classed as Yung Yang-class minesweepers, they were still in active service in 2012. USS Implicit was decommissioned 30 September 1994 in Tacoma and was the last Aggressive-class minesweeper in US Navy active service. Minesweepers have been in operation since World War I and involved a simple metal detector, which sailors used to locate naval mines; this practice was dangerous not only from the risk of missing and detonating a mine, but because the enemy would be making the task harder for the sweepers by keeping them under constant, heavy fire. Minesweepers were admired by their peers because of their bravery. Aggressive-class minesweepers used AN/SQQ -14 mine hunting sonar to locate bottom mines.
They used electromagnetic cables to set off mines or other cables to cut their mooring lines, various magnetic and acoustical devices to set off mines. Toward the end of their use, the class employed remote submersibles like Super Sea Rover to locate mines. Today, active minesweepers or minehunters are used; the Royal Navy of the United Kingdom uses small submarines that are controlled by wireless operators on board the several minesweeping frigates that it possesses. Sweden produced a robotic Self-propelled Acoustic/Magnetic Minesweeper, which proved its worth during Operation Desert Storm, when it was used for minesweeping by the US Navy. SAMs are in service with the Swedish Navy, the Japanese Navy, the Royal Navy and the US Navy, though not aboard Aggressive-class minesweepers. HNLMS Onverschrokken - Dutch Aggressive-class minesweeper FAS - MSO-422 class GlobalSecurity - MSO-422 class ex MSO 483