Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Changes in the Humanitarian Mission to Georgia



According to this report, American warships will no longer be conducting humanitarian aid port calls to Georgia. Those will only be done by civilian ships from this point forward. The report also notes that more than 60 aid flights were made to Georgia.

Comment: The cynical view in Runet is that now that warships have stopped making port calls in support of the humanitarian mission, now they can get back to the work of re-arming Georgia.

5 comments:

NavyRu said...

Here in Russia we are puzzled by fact that american humanitarian cargoes included very special things like toilet paper for georgians. Hм-м-м ??? :)
As you saw probably at CNN:

http://rutube.ru/tracks/992608.html?v=5db2d3d3f32294c04690dcffb14a2046>

And what for it was required to deliver the humanitarian help by the military ship like USS Mount Whitney. Here (http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/agency/navy/lcc-20.htm) anybody can read:

The USS Mount Whitney is the most sophisticated command, control, communications, computer and intelligence ship ever commissioned. The ship can receive and transmit large amounts of secure data from any point on Earth through various communications paths. The ship can carry 450 enlisted personnel and officers and is armed with two 20 mm Close-In Weapons Systems, chaff rockets, 25 mm chain guns and .50-caliber machine guns.

Is she ToiletPaperNosets, оr conbatant ship?

Excuse me my broken english. :(

So, it very interesting blog!

ChesapeakeAuxie said...

The US ALWAYS delivers humanitarian aid by military ships and planes.

There are many refugees that nobody seems to remember of, that migrated south to Georgia and will need this aid. However, this is also a good reason to bring the warships to the Black Sea and show the flag. However, the operation is officially over and the ships will be leaving soon.

Navalist said...

navyru - just to add to what chesapeake said, if you search for stories on the 2004 Asian Tsunami you'll see that the US dispatched a lot (if not all) of its seaborne humanitarian aid via naval warships. I also remember a case probably over a decade ago during floods in Bangladesh when the Bengalis made noises opposing aid comming via US warships. These are just two examples I suspect there are many more.

Not being a naval expert I'm not sure of the exact reasons why the US delivers aid via the Navy but I would speculate that there are two reasons. One, the navy has the presence and ability to be dispatched to where the need is more quickly and two, the US no longer possesses a sizeable merchant marine fleet that could be similarly dispatched.

In regard to the use of the USS Mount Whitney, there could be several reasons for it. Firstly, it is a command vessel not a combat vessel. As you pointed out from globalsecurity.com, it is armed with only defensive weapons, this should serve to calm fears (among the normaly thinking types) that it may 'engage' anything larger than a Black Sea Fleet tugboat. In addition it may have been the only available non-warship the Navy could send. It seems that the US is going out of its way to send the meek and the lightly armed through the Bosporus. Take the USS Dallas for instance. A Coast Guard cutter is far from the most powerful vessel in the US fleet.

In regard to the Whitney's possible surveillence capability - you bet. Are you saying the Russian Navy doesn't spy on the US Navy? As long as the Whitney stays clear of Russian waters is there any crime in listening to radio traffic?

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