Wednesday 11 October 2017

US Navy crew monitoring North Korea says ship is a ‘floating prison’

There is a serious morale problem on one of the US Navy’s missile cruisers charged with keeping North Korea at bay, according to a new report.
Crew aboard the USS Shiloh told an anonymous Navy survey the boat is a “floating prison” and said that they “hate” their job and ship, according to a Navy Times report detailing the shocking responses.
“I just pray we never have to shoot down a missile from North Korea, because then our ineffectiveness will really show,” one dejected sailor wrote.
Crew lodged the hair-raising complaints in three surveys conducted between June 2015 and August of this year — when the ship was commanded by Capt. Adam M. Aycock. He was not fired, the Navy Times reported.
Another stationed on the vessel said that depressed and suicidal crewmembers were afraid to report the life-threatening conditions because those who did were prevented from leaving the ship.
“I am honestly worried people will stop asking for help due to the worry of being punished,” a sailor wrote. “Why would someone ask for help just to be forced to stay in the location that is making them feel that way.”
They also complained they were severely overworked and the boat wasn’t in ship shape.
“It feels like a race to see which will break down first the ship or it’s [sic] crew,” one despondent respondent wrote.
The Shiloh is part of the Navy’s troubled 7th Fleet, which has endured serious scrutiny and high-level leadership shakeups after two of its ships crashed into commercial vessels in separate incidents this year.
First the USS Fitzgerald plowed into a container ship near Japan on June 17. Investigators found that sailors made a “slew” of mistakes leading up to the collision, which claimed the lives of seven sailors when the Fitzgerald’s hull ripped open and the men’s sleeping quarters were flooded with seawater.
Then the USS John S. McCain slammed into an oil tanker near Singapore, leaving 10 servicemen dead. A preliminary investigation revealed the crew failed to compensate when the ship lost its steering power, according to a Washington Times report.

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