Skip to comments.Navy may revive 4th Fleet in S. Atlantic, Caribbean
Posted on 01/22/2008 12:50:17 PM PST by BGHater
Strategist says move would show U.S. is committed to Latin America
MIAMI The Navy is considering restoring the 4th Fleet in the Atlantic Ocean, a bureaucratic change that would raise the prominence of Pentagon maritime activities in Latin America and the Caribbean.
Adm. Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, made the disclosure during a visit to the Southern Command last week calling it "a great idea" that "as far as I know is moving forward."
The move would bring no new vessels to the region but would put Southcom on par administratively with other Pentagon outposts that have large budgets and bigger muscle. For example, the Central Command operates the Fifth Fleet in the Middle East.
It would also restore an institution that sent U.S. Navy ships into southern waters in search of Nazi U-boats. The Navy created the 4th Fleet in 1943 to hunt submarines in the South Atlantic during World War II.
It was disbanded seven years later with naval operations in the region run from Norfolk, Va.
Still in planning stage At the Pentagon, Navy Cmdr. Jeff Davis said no final decision has been made. Mullen said if such an institution were created, it would be worked out between the Navy's top officer, Adm. Gary Roughead, and Adm. James Stavridis, the Southcom commander, who runs the region's U.S. military operations out of South Florida.
In theory, the 4th Fleet would operate out of Mayport, Fla., now a smaller headquarters for Navy South, which coordinates Navy activities in Latin America and the Caribbean for Southcom. It is run by a one-star officer, Rear Adm. James Stevenson. A 4th Fleet would be run by a two- or three-star admiral, and may need congressional approval.
Davis emphasized that no new vessels and no additional budget would come with the creation of a 4th Fleet.
Instead, warships from various bases would be assigned to sail in the fleet in waters stretching from the Caribbean through Central and South America.
'A bigger profile' Military analysts said the establishment of a 4th Fleet admiral could elevate Southcom's prominence in discussions on where ships are deployed and would surely send a signal to southern neighbors.
"It gives the Navy a bigger profile in the region," said Frank Mora, professor of national security strategy at the National War College in Washington, D.C. "It sends a message to the region that you are important at a time when there is a sense that we don't care."
Moreover, it may also reflect the Navy's increasing commitment to Latin America and the Caribbean at a time when the Pentagon is preoccupied and when ground forces are focused on Middle East operations.
In recent years, the Southern Command has increasingly relied on the Navy for humanitarian operations.
"Symbolism is something that has some currency," Mora said. "It's a way of compensating for limited resources and funds, perhaps lack of focus in Washington or other things."
Mullen, the top U.S. military officer since October, was at Southcom as part of a five-day trip to the region that includes Colombia and El Salvador.
Lookout Hugo. Bwahahahaha.
Another fleet? Well, by God, I love the Navy, but where are the ships coming to come from?
Where would it be based?
Guantanamo bay, that way both Castro and Hugo will sh*t bricks and can share radio and TV time screaming about the Eeeevil Americans.
More of a police force, state of the art frigates, tin cans, associated support vessels, a few attack subs, and most likely the Kitty Hawk will be re-stationed to it, but not sure which other carrier will be assigned.
Phildelphia Naval Ship Yard. Clinton mothballed hundreds of ships their during his reign.
I thought KH was to be retired.
Yep, Kitty Hawk is being retired, no plans to the contrary.
A “Fleet” is an administrative unit, not a set number of ships.
The New Jersey is in Phily. Wisconsin is in Norfolk. Iowa is north of SFCA...
If the money is available, she’ll be retro’d to be in service if needed in the area (cheaper than building new)....looks like some elements may play in the Gulf too as well as the KH. The Navy needs a good training carrier and they are usually older boats but have lots of life left in them.
Why? Are they’re Nazi U-boats down there again?
Headquarters in Mayport. No new ships. They would control present assets operating in their areas
The Kitty Hawk has a one way ticket to the scrap yard.
Where would it be based?
Drive-by posting; didn't read the article?
OK...I was speculating on the KH, however, will there not most likely be a carrier in that area for air patrol, etc. assigned to the 4th? I figured with Pensacola, Jacksonville around, and Charleston, SC close by, they’d have more than enough places to dock a carrier(s). Those ports not big enough for a Nimitz class or only one carrier per port? Just curious. I like the idea of having some more Navy muscle in that area (China sub crap incidents and all)......we need it and seems to be a good area for training.
You think you’re joking...
Why? Are theyre Nazi U-boats down there again?
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.