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USS Decatur Skipper Fired

tomahawk6

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Fired for lying about the ships position.

https://www.stripes.com/news/us/report-investigators-say-fired-decatur-captain-lied-about-ship-s-position-1.625832

SAN DIEGO (Tribune News Service) — The captain of the San Diego-based guided-missile destroyer Decatur was removed from command in January for filing false position reports to the Navy, according to a Navy investigation recently obtained by the Union-Tribune.
According to the investigation, Cmdr. John "Bob" Bowen, the Decatur's commanding officer, ordered his crew in September not to report that the ship had gone dead in the water.
The ship had stopped to conduct maintenance on one of its propeller shafts while transiting the eastern Pacific from Hawaii to Seal Beach, California..
In order to hide the four-hour-long stop from the fleet, the crew reported inaccurate ship positions to make it appear as though the vessel never stopped, the investigation said.

 

daftandbarmy

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SupersonicMax said:
Perceived pressure?  Actual pressure?

Chinese inflicted PTSD? :)

https://www.stripes.com/news/photos-show-how-close-chinese-warship-came-to-colliding-with-us-navy-destroyer-1.550153
 

Haggis

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SeaKingTacco said:
Why would you even lie about something like that?

Because he had fallen behind schedule?  Because the mechanical issue might be seen as a failure of command over his engine department?  Lately it seems that the USN is less tolerant of failure in any form than North Korea.
 

Jarnhamar

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Haggis said:
Because he had fallen behind schedule?  Because the mechanical issue might be seen as a failure of command over his engine department?  Lately it seems that the USN is less tolerant of failure in any form than North Korea.

I was thinking the same thing. Rough place.
 

SeaKingTacco

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Haggis said:
Because he had fallen behind schedule?  Because the mechanical issue might be seen as a failure of command over his engine department?  Lately it seems that the USN is less tolerant of failure in any form than North Korea.

I don't know. I have a fair bit of sea time and the story just does not make sense. There have got to be some missing pieces.
 

tomahawk6

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In this age of satellites and other types of intelligence lying would be pretty risky if the chain of command chose to verify.

https://www.stripes.com/news/us/report-investigators-say-fired-decatur-captain-lied-about-ship-s-position-1.625832
 

FSTO

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SeaKingTacco said:
I don't know. I have a fair bit of sea time and the story just does not make sense. There have got to be some missing pieces.

A head scratcher for sure. Who thinks that you can keep a secret within the entire crew of an Arliegh Burke Class Destroyer? Something stinks in the command structure of the United States Navy Pacific Fleet.
 

Journeyman

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There are some disconnects between Capt and crews' testimonies.  Plus lots of "I don't remember," which is also a hallmark of this administration's several legal adventures.
 

Navy_Pete

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I could see not being too worried about reporting something to fleet like that via the official channels (other then maybe a quick ping over chat or whatever) but shutting off Link16 and GCCS, falsifying records in the bridge notebook etc are just really stupid.  Plus it's probably still logged in the bridge recorder (along with voice recordings of things like the phone calls) so it's really strange.

We did this kind of stuff regularly and unless it was a big defect that we were fixing it wouldn't even merit anything other than a note in the daily sitrep message.  If it's a transit from A to B, no one cares if you do something like this if you stay on schedule; no one asks permission for a SWIMEX, banyan or whatever.

USN seems to have a really toxic command oversight.
 

daftandbarmy

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Navy_Pete said:
I could see not being too worried about reporting something to fleet like that via the official channels (other then maybe a quick ping over chat or whatever) but shutting off Link16 and GCCS, falsifying records in the bridge notebook etc are just really stupid.  Plus it's probably still logged in the bridge recorder (along with voice recordings of things like the phone calls) so it's really strange.

We did this kind of stuff regularly and unless it was a big defect that we were fixing it wouldn't even merit anything other than a note in the daily sitrep message.  If it's a transit from A to B, no one cares if you do something like this if you stay on schedule; no one asks permission for a SWIMEX, banyan or whatever.

USN seems to have a really toxic command oversight.

Commanders, who are regularly beaten by their bosses, behave differently from normal leaders....
 

Navy_Pete

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daftandbarmy said:
Commanders, who are regularly beaten by their bosses, behave differently from normal leaders....

I agree, I guess the whole thing is like one of those crimes so stupid you have to wonder how they thought they would get away with it.  A ship's captain used to be god over their own domain when the lines slipped, crazy to me that they would have somehow turned it so on it's head to be scared of saying they are doing something basic and totally within their authority to approve.

I can't really wrap my head around the CO ordering people to lie about their position, shut off equipment etc, to get around not reporting something that they specifically don't have to. Maybe the same person that kept calling back for 'clarification' took some inappropriate initiative, or something was mangled in the telephone game? Usually the limits on what is reported is pretty reasonable, and prevents the HQ from getting overwhelmed with a volume of minor reports, so the whole story is really strange.
 

Baz

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SeaKingTacco said:
Why would you even lie about something like that?

A quote from a USNI Blog by Cdr Salamander I'm posting over on the TR thread:
Just to stick to recent history; from Fat Leonard, to the tragic events of 2017, to the Housewives of the Potomac drama involving the already confirmed prospective next CNO, to TR pierside in Guam we have a pattern of dysfunctional uniformed leadership at the highest levels.
 
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