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USS Gabrielle Giffords Christened As Navy’s First Gun-Free Warship

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MOBILE, Ala. — Seeking to honor a retired congresswoman and 2011 shooting victim in the most considerate and respectful way possible, the Navy today christened the future USS Gabrielle Giffords (LCS-10), a first-of-its-kind, gun-free warship.

Designed to hold a core crew of 40 sailors, the Independence-class littoral combat ship has been stripped bare of its Mk 110 57-millimeter gun, all four of its Mk2 .50-cal machine guns, its Evolved SeaRAM 11 cell missile launcher, and its entire cache of small arms, which are typically issued to boarding teams and watch standers.

“Having this mighty warship be 100% gun-free not only helps to honor its heroic namesake, Gabby Giffords, but it also helps the Navy to steer clear of promoting a culture of violence,” said Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus, who reportedly lobbied hard to get Congress and the Secretary of Defense on board with leaving the Navy’s newest addition to the fleet completely defenseless.

“Once commissioned and put into service,” Mabus continued, “this vessel will truly embody the Navy’s new motto of Semper Modestis— always considerate.”

The Navy Secretary went on to say that he hopes Giffords sets a new trend Navy-wide, and that it’s merely the first ship of many to go weapons-free.

“We have this whole new generation of millennials joining the Navy and becoming sailors on a daily basis, and most of them don’t even like guns,” he said. “So it’s important we listen to their concerns and do what we can to adapt to them.”

Mabus also said that going gun-free with the Giffords was a huge cost saver, and that much of the money saved on armament for the vessel was able to be redirected to a vegan-friendly galley, unisex uniforms for the whole crew, and numerous “safe spaces” throughout the ship — places where sailors can go to relax and decompress whenever they feel overly-stressed by the rigors of life at sea.

Though Mabus and numerous other attendees at the ceremony seemed genuinely excited about christening the Navy’s first gun-free warship, in a somewhat ironic twist, both former congresswoman Giffords and her husband, Mark Kelly, were surprisingly unenthusiastic about the concept.

“Listen, it’s no secret that both Gabby and I are big proponents of reasonable gun control, and we really appreciate this gesture being made by the Navy, but the idea of sending a warship out into this turbulent world without any weapons whatsoever is completely irrational,” said Kelly, himself an astronaut and retired Navy captain.

“Like, seriously, this isn’t going to end well.”

Though still recovering from the trauma she suffered in 2011 and unable to speak in lengthy sentences, Giffords was much more concise upon being asked what she thought of the Navy making her namesake ship completely gun-free.

“Dipshits,” she said.

UPDATE: Since this story first appeared, Giffords has reportedly been hijacked at gunpoint from its pier at Austal USA’s shipyard. The City of Mobile Police Department is asking anybody with information about the theft to contact the department’s Crime Stoppers line at 251-555-7000.

Navy

Pentagon relieved to discover tankers in Gulf Of Oman just collided with US Navy warships

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WASHINGTON — Officials at the Pentagon breathed a collective sigh of relief this week after receiving word that the tankers damaged Thursday in the Gulf of Oman were actually accidental collisions with US Navy warships.

According to reports from 7th Fleet, both tankers were damaged nearly simultaneously by the USS Boxer (LHD 4) and the USS John P. Murtha (LPD 26) in completely unrelated yet fortuitous acts of gross negligence.

“We are happy to announce that reports of Iranian attacks on oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman were merely incompetence and dereliction of duty on the part of the U.S. Navy and not the harbinger of future wars to come,” said 7th Fleet commander Vice Adm. Phillip G. Sawyer.

While a win for US foreign policy, it is a major blow for the the U.S. Navy, who have been grasping at relevancy since the cancellation of 70’s sitcom “CPO Sharkey.” Everyone at the Department of the Navy, including key defense strategy analysts, had been working at a fever pitch determining the implication of Thursday’s attacks on inter-state strategic competition.

“We can take solace in the fact that they are already back to providing in-depth analysis of the battles in Game of Thrones,” said Sawyer.

Iran’s U.N. Mission also praised the announcement, calling it the most positive diplomatic action on behalf of the United States military since Iran’s seizure of two US riverine command boats in 2016.

“I commend the officers of the U.S. warships for not ‘giving up the ship’ this time,” the Iranian mission said in a statement. “Instead, they chose to errantly ram that ship into an oil tanker.”

“So brave.”

An investigation into both incidents remains ongoing, but the same senior Navy officials who appoint and ham-handedly relieve officers found guilty of misconduct are confident that the findings will result in sweeping changes to how the Navy shifts blame in future incidents.

“Disciplining only senior officers is not consistent with other branches of the military, who usually vilify more junior personnel first,” said Chief of Naval Operations Adm. John Richardson. “I will ensure the results change that behavior in the future.”

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Navy

Chief of Naval Operations lauds return to tradition of ‘false flag’ operations

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A U.S. merchant vessel sunk by a Nazi submarine. Or was it?

THE PENTAGON — Chief of Naval Operations Adm. John Richardson applauded the Navy’s return to what he called “its storied tradition of false flag operations” in a speech on Friday, several attendees confirmed.

In remarks to senior Navy leaders, Richardson noted that the American fleet has been blaming provocations at sea on outsiders since Yankee sailors dressed up like Indians at the Boston Tea Party in 1773.

“Even before we had declared independence,” he noted, “we were already doing our best to pretend other people started our first war.” Richardson also noted half a dozen times that such operations would help the Navy during “great power competition” and in the “high end fight,” as official Navy guidance on speeches given by senior officers require.

“False flag operations” refer to operations intended to give the impression that another actor launched the initial attack. “The term false flag literally refers to pirate ships hauling up an English or Spanish flag before they attacked,” noted Bill Roberts, a naval warfare and vexillology expert at the Center for New American Security Studies (CNASS). “It let them get close to merchant vessels, before unleashing a deadly broadside of artillery and seizing them.”

Attendees of the speech say Richardson emphasized the timeliness of the Navy’s return to false flag activity. “As we face increasing maritime gray zone threats, including Chinese maritime militias, the Russians in the Black Sea, and North Korean smuggling, it is imperative that we learn how to deceive our enemies so they cannot deceive us,” he told his audience of admirals, captains and senior civilians.

The admiral did not provide any specifics about what false flag operations the Navy had resumed.

According to Roberts, in the last several decades the CIA had increasingly taken over responsibility for all false flag operations.

“Ever since the DoD botched Operation Northwoods during the Cuban Missile Crisis in the ’60s, which was a plan to blame Fidel for CIA-orchestrated terrorist attacks, the boys at Langley have liked to keep uniform personnel far away from this kind of stuff,” he noted.

“I can’t think of a single occasion since Vietnam where military personnel have faked a terrorist attack. It’s great the Navy’s getting back into it.”

Richardson’s remarks came as American leaders sought to assign blame for attacks on two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman, which they claim were likely a covert action by Iran.

When asked for more information by reporters, Pentagon officials said the American public would just have to “trust us.”

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Navy

Iran attacks US warships in the Gulf of Tonkin

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HO CHI MINH CITY, Vietnam—Iran has staged a failed hit-and-run attack on U.S. warships, the Navy has reported.

According to Pentagon officials, vessels secretly controlled by Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps Navy (IRGCN) fired several missiles at the U.S. destroyers USS Maddox (DD-731) and USS Turner Joy (DD-951) yesterday while they cruised in the Gulf of Tonkin, just off the coast of Vietnam. The missiles failed to strike either warship.

The move came as a shock to Seventh Fleet, which expected Iran to attack U.S. forces on the other side of the world in the Persian Gulf.

“This shows just how devious the Ayatollahs are,” said a senior U.S. official who spoke anonymously so he would not be tweet-fired, referring to Iran’s religious leaders, who control the country. “Clearly, the Persians realize that we have achieved local superiority in the Middle East and are pursuing asymmetric responses.”

Earlier this month, the U.S. sent an aircraft carrier strike group to the Persian Gulf to deter what U.S. officials claimed was an impending Iranian attack. More recently, officials claimed the Iranian threat had faded.

The vessels that staged the attack are traditional Iranian sailing vessels, called dhows, and did not have military markings. The dhows departed immediately after the incident and have not been located since, according to several Pentagon officials.

“This is some real gray zone stuff,” an admiral said. “We were expecting renewed great-power competition, or at least a near-peer fight.”

A sailor familiar with the matter said that it was not unusual for sailing vessels to be hard to track on the high seas. Conditions in the Gulf of Tonkin, where a squall shortly after the attacks reduced visibility to brought six-foot waves, also likely contributed to the Iranian escape. Beyond difficult detection conditions, the sailor said the Maddox‘s long-range air-search radar and the Turner Joy‘s radar were inoperative.

“We’re just happy we didn’t hit a freighter,” the sailor said.

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Navy

President Trump orders Navy to scuttle USS John S. McCain

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The USS John S. McCain during a replensihment at sea.

TOKYO—President Donald Trump has ordered that the crew of the USS John S. McCain (DDG-56) to scuttle the ship. The order, relayed through acting Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan, sent shock waves through the Navy. When carried out, it will be the first active U.S. Navy vessel scuttled since World War II.

“I like ships that don’t get hit by freighters” Mr. Trump told Vice Adm. Phillip G. Sawyer, commander of Seventh Fleet. “You know, 354 ships should be good. I don’t know why everyone is talking about 355 ships. They’ll be the best ships, anyway believe me.”

Unable to take the ship out to sea and scuttle it on such short notice, the McCain’s captain, Cdr. Micah Murphy, ordered the ship hidden from Mr. Trump during his visit. Murphy ordered the crew to place a large tarp covering the name on the stern, hoping that the Commander-in-Chief would not notice the presence of the 500-foot long vessel moored to the pier.

“If that doesn’t work, then maybe repaint the name to ‘Mohn J. ScCain,’’ Murphy reportedly told his crew. “Or maybe ‘Ohnjay cCainMay.’”

Trump told reporters, “I wouldn’t have crashed the ship if I was captain. I would have been a very good admiral, a very stable captain.”

Chief of Naval Operations Adm. John M. Richardson is reportedly trying to save the ship without the president’s knowledge. He directed sailors to paint over the stern plate in the meantime. “We should have thought about this when it was in drydock last year,” Richardson reportedly told IndoPacCom Commander Adm. Phil Davidson. “I knew the president had a personal grievance against one of the ship’s namesakes, but I didn’t think he’d order us to sink a perfectly good ship.”

“You know what?” Richardson asked. “Fuck it. I’m about to retire. Save the ship. We’ll just cross the name out and call it the USS Trump for now.”

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Miscellaneous

Pearl Harbor survivor unhappy with Mitsubishi Memorial Day sale

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HONOLULU, Hawaii — Local World War II veteran Johnny Thompson is unhappy with the nature of the this past weekend’s sale at his local Mitsubishi dealership in honor of Memorial Day.

“I get this sinking feeling when it comes to commercialism that takes advantage of a day to honor our fallen brothers in arms,” Thompson told reporters. “It’s like they are trying to torpedo their American competition.”

“Honestly, this whole event snuck up on me,” he added.

The “Zero down, zero interest for 24 months, and no payments for six months” promotion was a surprise event for local consumers, despite the fact that the dealership is known for its tagline of “Deals! Deals! Deals!” According to Ken Yamamoto, General Sales Manager at Tora Tora Mitsubishi, the offer began at 7:53 AM on Sunday but only lasted for a little under two hours. The company’s sister dealerships in the Philippines, Guam, and Wake Island offered a similar promotion starting ten hours later.

“Our competition there never saw it coming, despite the fact that our sales blitz was all over AFN,” Yamamoto added.

Thompson believes that the problem may just be cultural differences. “Why can’t Mitsubishi just leave and make room for decent manufacturers like Mercedes and BMW?” he asked. 

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Navy

Sailors walking into strip club reminded to ‘clap like Mike Pence is speaking’

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mike pence

SAN DIEGO, Calif. — A group of sailors preparing to enter the Rear Admiral Gentleman’s Club were reminded by Command Master Chief Petty Officer Michael Tubbins on Saturday evening to “clap like Mike Pence is speaking,” — referencing the primal sexual energy typically elicited by the vice president’s remarks, sources confirmed today.

The sailors, who varied in age, rank, and number of vice presidential addresses attended, appreciated the reminder, according to defense officials.

“Obviously, we’ve all attended a few speeches by the vice president, usually while on temporary duty away from our home station” stated Petty Officer 3rd Class Jason Smith.

“Heck, we all know that one junior sailor new to the fleet who marries the first Mike Pence speechwriter he meets. But we’re young, horny sailors so being in a strip club was a new experience for us and the Master Chief’s advice for how to act was invaluable.”

“These kids aren’t dumb. They know if there is one thing you do in a strip club it’s clap but it’s usually more reserved like when a movie ends or when your plane lands safely,” Master Chief Tubbins told reporters.

“But when a young lady in six inch glass heels and a G-string with several C-section scars takes her top off that’s not time to just be polite, you need to really help her feel welcome.”

Sources confirmed that the entire group of sailors responded in kind and expressed enthusiasm that was more than worthy of a Mike Pence address.

“I do this job for the applause so I’m always hoping it’ll be loud but from the second I stepped out there I was like whoa, is the vice president here? This is crazy,” said DyNasti, a dancer at Rear Admiral. “And when the DJ started spinning Hail to the Chief, I knew I had to work that pole the way Mr. Pence works that podium.”

Tubbins, who was present for the Pence’s “ISIS is defeated(-ish)” speech in January, expressed pride in his sailors’ effort but says it still cannot compare to the atmosphere of a real Mike Pence speech.

“Friday night had more boobs than a typical speech by the vice president but no VIP room will ever match the raw energy, intensity, and emotion of a Pence original.”

At press time, Command Master Chief Tubbins had been asked to resign from the Navy for daring to imply that sailors would bring the type of enthusiasm exhibited in a vice presidential address into a titty bar. Additionally, Petty Officer 3rd Class Smith and Dynasti are now married and expecting their first child together.

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Navy

Sailor can’t pee unless someone is watching

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SAN DIEGO — Retiring Chief Petty Officer Joe Andrews hasn’t peed without someone watching him in 22 years and isn’t about to start now.

“At first, I thought all the meat gazing was weird,” said Andrews. “Now, after all this time in the Navy, I went from not being able to piss with someone watching to not being able to piss without someone watching.”

Andrews told fellow sailors at the his retirement party that he’s not sure how he’s going to piss without someone making eye contact with his one-eyed monster.

“I’ve told Andrews that he just needs to reach out,” said Lt. Cmdr. Ross Stevens, Andrews’ commanding officer. “No one should have to pee alone.”

Many sailors are able to make the transition to pissing alone by running water in the background or pasting a picture of a urinalysis observer above the toilet, according to a recent Veterans Affairs Public Information for Sailors Study (PISS). Some, however, never fully make it through the transition, and find themselves seeking YMCAs, baseball stadiums and subway stations to avoid kidney problems.

Andrews expressed his hope for the future with a loud groan at the urinal before leaving the Chief’s Mess for the last time today. His first proctology appointment with the VA is a week from today, which he feels is a festive step up from the usual wiener wagging.

Stevens said that might be willing to go warm up Andrews’ bed and sweat on it a little bit, just the way he needs it to fall asleep.

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Army

I lived it: I stole the Navy goat, and now I just … have a goat

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We all do some foolish things in our youth when we don’t understand the consequences. For me, a lighthearted prank saddled me with a goat for the rest of my career, and I have to tell you — goats are a lot of fucking work.

It started late one night in Bradley Barracks on a cool autumn night just before the Army-Navy Football game. My roommate and I were rubbing each other’s backs and talking about our dreams, like we always did, when we hatched a fantastical plan to steal the Navy goat. We would be legends.

Still, I wasn’t ready for that moment, deep below Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium, when I locked eyes with Adm. Ernst J. King the goat. I didn’t expect him to seem so worldly, so wise, so game for the adventure. There were many goats in the goat dungeon that night, but I knew that Ernest was the goat for me. Ernest stood aside from the common goats, lazily eating “The Bluejacket’s Manual,” and practically leaped into the rucksack I’d brought for him. Our first touch was electric.

The next few days were a haze. While the military world panicked at the loss of Ernest, we spent lazy days on Clinton Field, sharing a secret just the two of us knew. I showed him how to cut a pie properly; he showed me how to eat the pie tin.

I realized, as I boarded the bus for the Army-Navy game, Ernest tucked neatly under my winter cape, that I had devised such an excellent scheme to steal Ernest I had never thought to make a plan to return him.

Time with Ernest flew by. Before I knew it, it was branch night, then graduation. As I threw my cap into the air, Ernest headbutted the chair out from under me, a sign of things to come.

Being a platoon leader is hard for anyone, but it’s harder with a goat. At unit PT, he’d run faster than me and jump higher than me, embarrassing me in front of my men.

I was excited and nervous for my first deployment, a fact lost on Ernest. He was a constant liability. He never wanted to stay on the FOB, which I can respect, but he was always getting confused as a gift, bribe, snack or sex toy when we went out on patrol.

If I thought Ernest was difficult on deployment, I really wasn’t ready for how he was going to handle our next assignment, as an assistant training officer at brigade S3. Ernest had no patience drafting PowerPoint slides for hours. He was clearly the kind of goat that you needed to keep with troops, the kind of goat that needed a mission. He took out his frustrations about the assignment — about the things he’d seen on deployment — by drinking too much. I could never get him enough water, and then he’d pee on the paper shredder. There were times I didn’t think we could keep it together.

Things got a little better when I picked up captain. I had a little more money to spend on Ernest. He got frustrated at the long hours and the midnight phone calls, but by that point, Ernest understood that we’d spent too long together. He couldn’t do better than me.

Sometimes people say to me, “How did you get a goat in the Pentagon?” I’d ask you how I could not have a goat in the Pentagon. Sure, now that I’m chief of staff of the Army, it raises some questions about why I don’t have a mule. It’s a ridiculous question. I’ll enjoy an evening in the company of Traveller or Trooper, but I bear a responsibility to Ernest. Ernest made it through War College, too, and he’s never brought a cell phone into a SCIF, so he’s ahead of most of us.

I never planned this life. Ernest J. King didn’t plan this life. Tradition brought us together. I think sometimes that Ernest needs to go back, but we both know that he can’t go back to naive midshipmen and lush greenery of Annapolis. Not after what he saw in Afghanistan. The VA isn’t ready for his type. He has no marketable skills. He can’t make it on the outside.

I’ll warn you: traditions are fun, cadets, but think through it. Always have an exit plan. Ernest and I didn’t. And I still have a fucking goat.

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