PROVIDENCE, R. I. – Some veterans of the Navy’s “Silent Service” are cringing at the news that President Donald Trump known the whereabouts of the two submarines that are part of a submarine force which prides itself on stealth.
While Trump gave the subs’ exact location, telling the president of the Philippines of the submarines’ presence in a private conversation scares a lot of people in a community who had long held up by the adage “Loose lips sink ships.”
“The only thing that saves our lives is that people do not know where we are,” said T. Michael Bircumshaw, a retired Navy master chief and the former commander of the United States Submarine Veterans, Inc. He said that telling anyone anything about where the AMERICAN submarines are “pure, unadulterated, criminal stupidity.”
Security experts say that these revelations are rare. A shortcoming, that is bitterly remembered in the submarine force came in 1943, Kentucky Congressman Andrew J. May was found that the submarines were escaping Japanese attacks, because the costs which they let fall, were explosive too shallow of a depth, Bircumshaw noted. Japanese troops adapted, and AMERICAN submarines were affected.
Trump’s reference to submarines was made during an April 29 call, which touched on the North Korean threat. Trump turned out to be the US had two nuclear submarines in the region, and do not want to use, according to a leaked transcript of the interview with Rodrigo Duterte.
“I see nothing wrong there, and that people, which makes it a foul” are a little ridiculous,” said retired Vice-Adm. Al Konetzni. “We have submarines operational, fortunately, we have them in all the trouble spots of the world.”
Thomas Fedyszyn, professor of national security affairs at the U. S. Naval War College in Newport, Rhode Island, could not recall an AMERICAN president ever making such a disclosure.
“It was a very rare, unlikely and unusual statement from a senior political leader,” he said.
The Navy in general, do not describe where submarines are on patrol after they return home or they call on a port. The announced visit of the USS Michigan to Busan, South Korea, a few days for Trump ‘ s conversation with Duterte.
Dane Brown, who performed submarine war patrols for the Navy during the second world War, said he was not concerned about the disclosure of information, and the subs may not even be where Trump said that they were.
“But even if they are there, they are not going to be there very long,” said Brown, 94, of Oakdale, Connecticut.
Bud Atkins, who served on 10 submarines and retired as a command master chief, was incredulous. He said Trump should “keep his mouth shut, to put it bluntly.”
“I couldn’t believe it. I couldn’t believe it, ” said Atkins, also of Oakdale.
American submarines, the implementation of the nuclear warheads patrol the oceans of the world to deter a nuclear attack. Their locations are kept secret to ensure the US can strike back if attacked. Attack submarines also should remain hidden for their task, destroying enemy ships to send special operations forces to the shore, and the gathering of intelligence.
While varied opinions about the meaning of the Trumpet of the disclosure, the marines spoke of stealth as a principle in the advantage.
“We bring all those years of training to keep quiet under the water. We build machines specifically to make,” said submarine veteran Ray Hamilton, New London, Connecticut. “And we will remain hidden, until the president says, ‘Hey, we are hiding them there!”
James H. Patton, Jr., a retired Navy captain, said that it will come as no surprise that there are submarines active in that part of the world, and Trump does not give a precise location or ship names. But he wondered whether it was an intentional statement vetted by his advisers, perhaps to reassure allies, or something spontaneous.
“If he was game that uses dice from the information that he knew, that’s worrisome,” said Patton. “If it’s a deliberately thought out statement, I have no problem.”