Rear Adm. (sel.) Mark Kenny, director of the new Navy Irregular Warfare Office, told the Submarine Naval League Symposium in Virginia last week that the SSGNs are being sent "where al Qaeda is at...it's that simple" according to an article in Defense Daily (subscription) this morning.
"The first two deployments, the Ohio and Florida, were groundbreaking deployments," he said at the Naval Submarine League Symposium in McLean, Va. "The ships work as advertised, brought home the bacon. And I wish I could give you the briefs in detail, because they are eye-watering..."We recently observed the USS Ohio (SSGN 726) with two dry deck shelters, which one would imply that there were at least two special operations teams aboard. The article goes on to the discuss unmanned systems in development for the SSGN, including submarine versions of the Sea Stalker and the Boeing ScanEagle, to improve ISR capabilities.
"These ships are the Navy's premiere counterterrorism tool, no doubt about it," Kenny said. He added that's the view of "those that lead this fight"--officers such as Special Operations Command leader Adm. Eric Olson--as well as the intelligence community.
The SSGN has an advantage over aircraft because it has both the intelligence-surveillance-reconnaissance (ISR) and strike capabilities, he said, and doesn't need permission from other nations to take off and land.If you have read here long, you should already be aware that it is the submarine force quietly leading from the front lines for the Navy. Good to see the submariners get some credit. However, ADM Kenny should have stopped while he was ahead.
He added that the SSGN can fill the gap in surface-fire support created by the planned truncation of the DDG-1000 destroyer line.Sigh. ADM, stick to irregular warfare, that last comment drove a Marine sitting 20 feet from my desk to use his outside voice indoors, and when you remove the colorful adjectives of his comment it goes something like "that guy knows nothing about fire support." Maybe you were making an important point, but the Tomahawk Cruise Missile is not fire support, and if that is what you are talking about I will agree with the Marines.