NORFOLK, Va. — In what would be a stunning break from over two centuries of Naval tradition, the U.S. Navy has revealed it is currently weighing the idea of “giving up the ship, just for like, a minute, just to see how it feels,” sources confirmed today.
The Navy hasn’t seriously considered giving up the ship since Capt. James Lawrence issued the famous order with his dying breath aboard the USS Chesapeake in 1813, according to historians. Since that time, the Navy has strictly prohibited ship giving-up on any vessel, whether deployed or at port.
“Certainly, giving up the ship — even just once — would be an enormous break with tradition,” said Lt. Cmdr. Terry Adams. “For the last 200 years, every sailor has had ‘Don’t Give Up the Ship!’ drilled into them, as if it were a commandment handed down by God himself.”
But it appears the time to reverse course may be now, Navy officials said.
“Not giving up the ship clearly worked for the types of naval engagements common to 19th and early 20th century warfare,” said Naval War College strategist Eric Clark.
“But how did not giving up the ship work out for us in Korea? Or Vietnam? We’ve been steadily not giving up the ship for 14 years in Iraq, and 16 years in Afghanistan, and what have we got to show for it? Besides the ship, I mean.”
Defense officials have cautioned that, while the idea of giving up the ship may be enticing in theory, it could be years before the plan is implemented on a wide scale. For now, the Pentagon has decided to test the waters by observing trials in a series of war games slated for this summer.
“If these games go as planned, we may see other massive breaks with tradition as well,” said a senior Pentagon official, who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss sensitive matters. “There could even come a day when the Army fires before seeing the whites of their eyes.”