Each of the Features at the front of this edition of THE SUBMARINE REVIEW treat issues which are most worthy of note and thoughtful consideration. President Clinton”s congratulations on the success of naval nuclear power has connotations beyond the recognition of a significant mile-stone-it says a lot more about the future than the past. Secretary Dalton’s ringing speech at the June 16th Symposium banquet solidly endorsed the submarine building program. A collection of appropriate parts of several of SecNav”s speeches is also included as background, and as an indication of his support of submarines.
In his remarks to the Symposium, the Chairman of the Naval Submarine League, Admiral Carl Trost, surveyed the current environment facing the submarine community, and laid out the general plans of the League in meeting its challenge. Vice Admiral George Emery’s keynote talk to the Technology Symposium in May has been declassified and is also featured here to present SubLant’s views on the importance of technological advances to future submarine performance. Other presentations at both the Technology and the Annual Symposia will be presented in the October issue of THE SUBMARINE REVIEW, but the final feature selected for inclusion here is the talk given by Rear Admiral Bill Houley on the need for innovation and pulling together in the submarine community if we are to be successful in the uphill battle ahead of us .
To set the context for consideration of a major part of the submarine building picture, the first of the Articles is a piece which recaps the history and the purpose of the New Attack Submarine program from the time it was known as the CENTURION project. The next one is more general in scope but it addresses a concern of us all in its treatment of budget-based cuts versus those based on an objective assessment of requirements.
For a change of pace, and venue, we have three articles on the Soviet Submarine Force. One aspect of their performance in World War II is treated by the noted German naval historian Professor Doctor Jurgen Rohwer as he describes the action by the Soviet boats in the eastern Baltic during the last year of the war. He notes that several sinkings at that time resulted in history’s worst sea disasters. Another article recounts the early days of Russian submarining and the design, building and operation of their first submarine. The third story is a more modem one and serves to prove that simple mistakes can add up to big problems in anyone’s navy.
A pair of articles about U.S. submarines is offered, with a new career for REQUIN described and an old trip for POGY recount-ed. For those who marveled at the high-tech graphics presented by the CO of the Submarine School at the Annual Symposium, the last article should be of particular interest. The Lieutenant Commander responsible for the computer-driven graphics describes his day-job use of those talents for modem training. It seems that School-of-the-Boat is not what it used to be.
One of the special notices in this issue concerns the project of the Capital Chapter to provide job counseling for those leaving the service or transitioning for one reason or another. The other notice is a status update on the Submarine Bibliography project. Finally, it is with great pleasure that the REVIEW presents a condensation of Commander Red Ramage’s patrol report of the action that won him the Medal of Honor 50 years ago this summer.
FROM THE PRESIDENT
As this volume of THE SUBMARINE REVIEW goes to press, we wrap up a very busy and exciting quarter. In May, the Submarine Technology Symposium at Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory was once again a sellout success. The theme, “Shaping the Submarine Force for the Twenty-First Century: Enabling Technologies for Transition from the Sea to the Littoral”, evoked a number of interesting papers. Advanced weapons (torpedoes, cruise missiles, and mines), enhanced high data rate communications, new concepts in stealth, new hydrodynamics applications, underwater vehicles, precision navigation, submarine-launched unmanned aerial vehicles, next-generation sensors, and mine counter-measures are representative of the subjects presented. Guest speakers included Vice Admiral George Emery, USN, COMSUBLANT; Rear Admiral Marc Pelaez, USN, Chief of Naval Research; Rear Admiral David Oliver, USN, Deputy for Policy to the Assistant Secretary of the Navy (Research, Development and Acquisition); Dr. Louis Marquet, Assistant Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Advanced Technology Development; and the Honorable Noel Longuemare, Principal Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition and Technology. Planning for the 1995 Technology Symposium is already underway.
Without much of a recovery period, the Annual June Subma-rine Symposium was upon us, and again we were blessed with success. The attendees heard reports from the Force Leadership, Atlantic, Pacific and Washington; a wake-up call from our compatriot Richard Compton-Hall ofthe U.K.; after-action reports from Commander Tom O’Connor, CO, USS SCRANTON (SSN 756 ) and Commander Bill Ostendorff, CO USS NORFOLK (SSN 714)recently returned from Adriatic deployments; John Birkler of the RAND Corporation, author of the Submarine Industrial Base Study; Rear Admirals John Mitchell on Strategic Systems, Bob Natter on Legislative Affairs, Walt Cantrell on Navy C’I, Dugan Shipway on the New Attack Submarine, and Bill Houley on Technology Requirements. Captain Wayne Peters described the transition at Submarine School from our beloved MK 4 TDC to the Star Trek systems of tomorrow, while Captain Robert Crawshaw, a surface warrior, described the new world of Maritime Action Group operations in the which SSNs play such a vital role, and Admiral Hank Chiles, CINC STRATCOM, revealed the complexity of the ongoing strategic force consider-ations. The Honorable Ike Skelton, U.S. Representative from Missouri and a great friend of the Force, was our luncheon speaker, while Secretary of the Navy John Dalton, a submariner, was our guest of honor at the banquet. Despite the very full agenda, there was time for socializing, renewing old friendships, and an occasional sea story.
One other event of the quarter was of historical significance. An industrial team (GTE, Lockheed Sanders, and General Dynamics Electric Boat) executed successfully on board USS ALBANY (SSN 753) a submarine communications demonstration in which submarine periscope video, imagery, video teleconferenc-ing, high throughput data, encrypted telephone calls, and E-mail messages were transferred to and from the ship at periscope depth in real time, with zero error rates. Any doubts concerning the viability of submarines as active participants in the Joint Task Force should be erased.
The last piece of good news as we go to press is that as a result of an aggressive recruiting campaign, we have gained eight new Corporate Benefactors. If we were as successful in individual memberships …This volume of THE SUBMARINE REVIEW attempts to bring you up-to-date on the many and complex fast-moving acquisition issues. Pay attention. There will be a quiz.