US Navy Ship Gets COVID - Captain Fired, then Scorned

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Ralebird, Apr 7, 2020.

  1. Ralebird

    Ralebird Well-Known Member

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    Talk about a shit show!

    USS Theodore Roosevelt in Pacific gets sent to Vietnam to make anniversary appearance. Some crewmembers then come down with Coronavirus. Fast forward to a week ago; virus count aboard approaches 100; Captain Brett Crozier looks to protect his crew by landing in Guam and sending healthy members to temporary housing onshore. This apparently in line with CDC and USN guidelines.

    Details vague but he apparently gets outranked and overruled. He emails letter detailing his plan to protect his crew to high Navy officials later saying he did so because he did not believe Fleet Admiral Stuart Baker would approve of him sending letter. Admiral later says he would not have approved of the letter being sent. No information of Admiral Baker providing orders on how to protect crew.

    Letter is leaked and Acting Navy Secretary of the Navy Thomas Modly fires Captain Crozier citing "loss of confidence" in his ability to lead for skirting the chain of command. Crozier leaves ship in Guam to cheers and chants from his crew and is later confirmed to have contracted COVID-19 himself. Modly flies to Guam to address the crew via PA system. In doing so he slams Crozier as naïve or stupid for sending the email or intentionally allowing it to leak as a betrayal of the system.

    He also scorns the crew for cheering the man who was trying to keep them safe. Modly suggests the crew doesn't need to like their jobs they just need to do them. Speech is recorded all over the ship and is quickly released to the media. Was Modly naïve or stupid? 2,000 crewmembers moved off ship as Crozier proposed in effort to curtail the virus which now has 173 victims aboard.

    Modly immediately comes under fire for his heavy handed actions and rambling scornful, profane speech to crew to the point that Trump, who initially backed the firing of Crozier is now critical of Modly who has held the position since November 24, 2019 when Secretary Richard Spencer resigned under pressure after showing his displeasure that the White House interfered and pressured him in the war crimes case of Navy Seal Eddie Gallagher.

    Modly issues apology to crew and Crozier but also doubles down on criticisms. Trump announces he will need to get involved to find out why two guys with good histories are being so heavily criticized.

    More details here:

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/art...ve-stupid.html

    https://arstechnica.com/science/2020...id-19-dilemma/
     
  2. Dierking

    Dierking Well-Known Member

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    You ever serve in an infantry unit, son?
     
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  3. FJF

    FJF 2018 MVP Joe Namath Award Winner

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    Captain broke chain of command. Can’t do that. You’re taught very early that the chain of command is strictly adhered to. Your also taught that the military is to protect democracy not practice it. Good for the captain for protecting his sailors but he did it wrong
     
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  4. Ralebird

    Ralebird Well-Known Member

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    Actually, there is an obligation for every member of the armed forces to do just that when issued unlawful orders or in a situation where the crew would be unnecessarily endangered. Ever heard of the Caine Mutiny? It's fiction but it illustrates the obligation. (You're also taught to never contact your congressman or senator but I know from personal experience that can be quite effective but that's a long story from long ago.)

    The question here, in my mind, is what did Admiral Baker plan to do to stop the spread of the disease; what did he order Crozier to do in that regard? There is a great probability that Crozier made the proposal to offload part of the crew and got denied by Baker before sending his letter. Crozier has stated that he sent the letter because he believed if he asked permission of Baker to send it he would have been denied. Baker confirmed he would have denied permission.

    So we now have a ship with about 4500 crewmembers aboard being swept with Coronavirus; almost 100 cases at the time and at least 173 today. Captain Crozier, being familiar with recent CDC and Navy directives on dealing with the virus, proposes bringing the ship to port in Guam and removing some of the crew to stifle the spread of the virus. (Here's where the speculation comes in for now) He tells Admiral Baker, who I believe is quartered on the same ship, his plan and is denied permission. There is no indication that Baker is concerned enough with the situation to propose his own plan for combatting the virus. The rock and the hard place.

    Crozier is charged with protecting his ship and his crew and has been denied the opportunity to do so (again, that part is speculation for now). He makes the choice that a Naval Academy graduate with 32 years experience never wants to make. The shit hits the fan.
     
  5. FJF

    FJF 2018 MVP Joe Namath Award Winner

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    Based on the article and your synapses, he jumped the chain of command. He needed to send the request to the admiral get denied and than jump over. He missed a step. He’s wrong for the right reasons but still wrong.
    And the admiral probably isn’t on the carrier, he usually is on the carrier group flag ship.
     
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  6. Ralebird

    Ralebird Well-Known Member

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    If he did not submit his proposal to offload part of the crew to the admiral he did skip up the chain by sending the letter he believed the admiral would have denied, which the admiral has confirmed. I'm speculating he told the admiral what he wanted to do and when denied decided he had no choice but to send the letter. I believe the gaps in the timeline will be filled in before this gets put to bed. Whether we ever find out may be another story.

    Right now I have a "loss of confidence" in the ability of Admiral Baker to command the fleet. One or two of the many articles I read on the situation indicated Baker was "just down the passageway" on the same ship. Is a carrier never the flagship?
     
  7. FJF

    FJF 2018 MVP Joe Namath Award Winner

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    Could be. When I was on the Washington the admiral was on the support ship and was referred to as the flag ship. Could be different now.
     
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  8. Ralebird

    Ralebird Well-Known Member

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    The admiral here is a ROTC guy who must have done something right to get his own fleet; the Captain is an Annapolis guy. Are there relationship problems between those two groups or does that pretty much disappear at the upper levels of command?
     
  9. Biggs

    Biggs Well-Known Member

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    Agreed. The Captain signaled that one of the US Navies most powerful weapons was compromised due to crew members being incapacitated by illness. The Secretary of the Navy signaled that one of the US Navies most powerful weapons had incompetent leadership and was compromised. Both messages were leaked out to the public. The acting Secretary of the Navy should be removed immediately for the same principle reason the Captain was removed.

    It wasn't just about the chain of command it was about compromising US national security. The Secretary of the Navy has let the world know that the US Navy has a big problem and it was leaked out to the world in minutes.

    What a complete dumb ass.
     
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  10. FJF

    FJF 2018 MVP Joe Namath Award Winner

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    I have no idea, I was involved in a aviation and all the officers were pilots and very much a tight knit group
     
  11. Biggs

    Biggs Well-Known Member

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    The acting secretary of the Navy has resigned. Jonas Grumby is said to be the next in line.
     
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  12. SOXXX2

    SOXXX2 Well-Known Member

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    It's a tough situation but the Captain was wrong...coming down hard on him is the appropriate response because more military guys would do the same if the punishment was minimal. You can't break the chain of command.
     
  13. Ralebird

    Ralebird Well-Known Member

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    Actually there is an obligation to break the chain if someone above is putting a ship and its crew in unnecessary danger. Why did Admiral Barker not want his decision to not put crewmembers ashore to curtail the spread of the virus sent to his superiors? Did Barker have a plan of his own? What was it? I would note that as soon as this blew up in public Crozier's plan was enabled.
     
  14. Biggs

    Biggs Well-Known Member

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    In this case we're talking about a Nuclear air craft carrier. It's literally the tip of the spear of United States power across the globe. While the captain has an obligation to his crew, in this case were not talking about a PT boat. We're talking about a weapon that could wipe out a small country. US National security, the stability of our relationship with our allies and even our enemies is dependent on the US chain of command being sacrosanct. The Captain needed to resign or be fired. That said the publicly leaked address by the Secretary of the Navy was an abomination and he was rightfully forced to resign.

    I get the obligation of the Captain to his crew but we're talking about raw power that could destabilize the world with a small misunderstanding. The chain of command in this case has to be enforced no question about it.
     
  15. Ralebird

    Ralebird Well-Known Member

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    In my eyes the weak link in the chain was not Crozier but Admiral Baker. Until we know what transpired between those two we won't know which one failed in his command. What we know now is that Crozier had a plan to maintain his ship and at the same time to take measures to safeguard the crew in consideration of both Navy and CDC directives regarding the Coronavirus. He wasn't going to tie up the ship and evacuate. His plan is now being utilized and 2,000 crewmembers are onshore. What was Baker's plan to save the crew and the ship?

    For some reason Crozier felt the need to bypass Baker and send a letter proposing to do what has now been adopted; he also believed Baker would not have given permission for such a letter to be sent which Baker confirmed. It would be totally illogical to believe the scenario would have played out the way it has without Crozier first presenting his plan to Admiral Baker and being denied.
     
  16. Zach

    Zach Well-Known Member

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    Shit show, it is.

    I remember this German 5-star field marshal named Friedrich Paulus during WWII.

    He was tasked to hunker down in Stalingrad - even when he was completely surrounded by Zhukov.

    Hitler even "promoted" him so he would fight till the last man. What did Paulus do? He flipped his finger at Hitler and surrendered.

    And he did the right thing, if you ask me. If your higher authority gives you bullshit, you should flip your finger at them. No officer with half sanity would give unethical command to begin with. That's what we soldiers are being taught. We do get to say no to unethical commands. Here, Cpt. Crozier was given a command to either [infect the whole fucking ship] or else. Maybe not directly, but that is the inevitable outcome if Cpt Crozier did take Theodore Roosevelt out on a misison.

    So [he broke the chain of command] argument is completely irrelevant. That Modly is such a fucking retard doesn't make the argument valid. It is not even like Cpt Crozier didn't do his due diligence within the proper channels. Nothing came back was useful for his situation. (Adm Baker? He gave Cpt Crozier a lot of nothings, last time I checked.)
     
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  17. Red Menace

    Red Menace Well-Known Member

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    If you know your superior officer is not going to support you while you are doing everything right then you have an obligation to take it to a higher authority.

    Hitlers henchmen hid behind the..” I was following orders” when asked about their actions with regards to the killing of masses.

    I’m so sick and tired of people acting like robots and not thinking for themselves.

    Personal experience.......I was asked by my superior to carry out an unlawful order and I refused, he berated me in front of a group of fellow workers, I kept my cool during the whole ordeal.

    When we were brought into the office the Assistant Chief told me “I should have followed his order and followed it up with a report to him about what was asked of me.”

    I looked at the assistant chief and asked him “if I could have it in writing that I would be indemnified in future events if I was asked to carry out an unlawful order again. He said no.”


    Guys, sometimes people in authority have no clue how to carry out their jobs and shouldn't have those jobs.

    I don’t follow the orders of stupid bosses when serious matters are involved in this case people’s lives, I can think for myself thank you. If I get fired so be it, I’m the one who has to live with it on my conscience.
     
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  18. Biggs

    Biggs Well-Known Member

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    Baker should walk the plank or be keel hauled.
     
  19. Cman65

    Cman65 The Dark Admin, 2018 BEST Darksider Poster

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    Either way, the Capt's career is finished. If they let him keep his pension, he'll be lucky. No good deed goes unpunished.
     
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  20. Zach

    Zach Well-Known Member

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    Indeed, sir. Indeed.
     

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