Saturday, August 3, 2019

TheList 5061

The List 5061 TGB

To All,

I hope that you all have a great weekend. Some entertainment.



Today in Naval History

August 2

1865 CSS Shenandoah, commanded by James I. Waddell, encounters the British merchant bark, Barracouta, in the Pacific Ocean and receives the first firm report the Civil War ended in April with the defeat of the Confederacy. Shenandoah rounds Cape Horn in mid-September and arrives at Liverpool in early November, becoming the only Confederate Navy ship to circumnavigate the globe. There she hauls down the Confederate ensign and turns over to the Royal Navy.

1943 (PT 109), commanded by Lt. j.g. John F. Kennedy, is rammed by the Japanese destroyer, Amagiri, which cuts through the vessel at Blackett Strait near Kolombangara Island. Abandoning ship, Kennedy leads his men to swim to an island some miles away. With the aid of a Coastwatcher and local residents, they return to Rendova PT base on Aug. 8.

1944 While in action with the German submarine (U 804), USS Fiske (DE 143) is torpedoed mid-ship, breaks in two and sinks. Thirty of her crew members are lost with her.

1964 USS Maddox (DD 731) engages three North Vietnamese motor torpedo boats. In the resulting torpedo and gunfire, Maddox hit all the boats, while she was struck only by a single 14.5-millimeter machine gun bullet. Air support arrives from USS Ticonderoga (CVA 14) and her planes strafe the three boats. Both sides then disengage.

August 3

1804 Commodore Edward Preble's Mediterranean Squadron launches the first of a series of bombardments on the harbor of Tripoli. Designed to destroy the defending batteries and sink enemy ships, the bombardments are part of the blockade that Preble established in 1803.

1861 Secretary of the Navy Gideon Welles calls for designers to submit plans for ironclad warships to the Navy Department. The design, by inventor John Ericsson, is chosen for USS Monitor, a revolutionary armored ship, carrying her guns in a rotating turret.

1942 Mildred H. McAfee takes the oath of office to become the first female line officer. She is commissioned a lieutenant commander in the Naval Reserve and simultaneously undertakes the duties of being the first director of the newly-established WAVES ("Women Accepted for Volunteer Emergency Service").

1943 PBM aircraft (VP 205) sinks German submarine (U 572), north of Dutch Giuiana. Also on this date, USS Buck (DD 420) sinks Italian submarine, Argento, off Tunisia.

1950 Marine Fighter Squadron Two Hundred Fourteen (VMF 214) operating from USS Sicily (CVE 118) attacks Chinju with rockets and incendiary bombs, in the first Marine Corps aviation mission against North Korea.

1958 USS Nautilus (SSN 571) becomes the first submarine to cross the "top" of the world during Operation Sunshine when the boat passes under an arctic ice cap at the North Pole. "For the world, our country, and the Navy - the North Pole," declared the boat's commanding officer, Cmdr. William R. Anderson. The mission had been personally authorized by President Eisenhower as a response to the USSR's Sputnik program.

2017 Richard V. Spencer is sworn in as the 76th secretary of the Navy. Spencer, a Connecticut native, graduated from Rollins College in 1976 with a Bachelor of Arts in Economics. Upon graduation he joined the United States Marine Corps and served as an H-46 pilot until 1981.

August 4

1790 The Revenue Cutter Service is established by Congress, authorizing the construction of 10 vessels to enforce federal tariff and trade laws and prevent smuggling. The service receives its present name, U.S. Coast Guard, in 1915 under an act of Congress that merges the Revenue Cutter Service with the Life-Saving Service, thereby providing the nation with a single maritime service dedicated to saving life at sea and enforcing the nation's maritime laws.

1846 During the Mexican-American War, Marines and Sailors led by Commodore Robert Stockton from the frigate USS Congress land to capture Santa Barbara, Calif.

1898 During the Spanish-American War, USS Monterey (BM 6) becomes the first monitor to cross the Pacific, reaching Manila Bay, Philippines, from San Francisco, Calif.

1939 USS Yorktown (CV 5) and USS Enterprise (CV 6) use hydraulic flush-deck catapults to launch SBC-3 and O3U-3 aircraft from flight and hangar deck catapults.

1943 Ensign Rosalie Thorne, USNR, becomes the first woman to be awarded the Navy Expert Pistol Shot Medal. She scores 211 out of 240 to qualify.

1943 A radar-equipped Catalina PBY carries out predawn bombing of a submarine base and main Japanese camp area on Kiska. The Catalina also drops 92 empty beer bottles (for the disconcerting whistling effect they produce) on those targets. Also on this date, USS Finback (SS 230) sinks Japanese cargo ship Kaisho Maru in the Java Sea off the north coast of Java while USS Seadragon (SS 194) damages Japanese transport Kembu Maru east of Ponape.

Thanks to CHINFO

Executive Summary:

• Today's headlines include the President threatening to levy additional tariffs against China, a N. Korean soldier crossing into the south, and the U.S. pulling out of the New Start treaty with Russia.

• The U.S. Senate approved Vice Adm. Michael Gilday to be promoted to admiral and serve as the next Chief of Naval Operations, reports multiple outlets.

• Navy Times reports that CNO Adm. John Richardson dismissed charges against a SEAL officer charged with covering up war crimes and ordered a comprehensive investigation into the performance of Navy JAG leaders.

• The Wall Street Journal reports that North Korea conducted its third weapons test in just over a week.

This day in History

Today in History August 2

216 BC

Hannibal Barca wins his greatest victory over the Romans at Cannae. After avidly studying the tactics of Hannibal, Scipio Africanus eventually bested his Carthaginian adversary.

47 BC

Caesar defeats Pharnaces at Zela in Syria and declares, "veni, vidi, vici," (I came, I saw, I conquered).


The treaty of Passau gives religious freedom to Protestants living in Germany.


An invading French army is destroyed at the Battle of Marciano in Italy by an imperial army.


During France's religious war, a fanatical monk stabs King Henry II to death.


The Continental Congress, having decided unanimously to make the Declaration of Independence, affixes the signatures of the other delegates to the document.


The first US census begins enumerating the population.


Napoleon Bonaparte is proclaimed "Consul for Life" by the French Senate after a plebiscite from the French people.


The first parachute jump from a balloon is made by Charles Guille in New York City.


Troops under General Henry Atkinson massacre Sauk Indian men, women and children who are followers of Black Hawk at the Bad Axe River in Wisconsin. Black Hawk himself finally surrenders three weeks later, bringing the Black Hawk War to an end.


William A. Leidesdorff launches the first steam boat in San Francisco Bay.


Union General John Pope captures Orange Court House, Virginia.


The Army Ambulance Corps is established by Maj. Gen. George McClellan.


Wild Bill Hickok is shot while playing poker.


Germany invades Luxembourg.


A British force lands in Archangel, Russia, to support White Russian opposition to the Bolsheviks.


Vice President Calvin Coolidge becomes president upon the death of Warren G. Harding.


German President Paul von Hindenburg dies and Adolf Hitler becomes chancellor.


Lt. John F. Kennedy, towing an injured sailor, swims to a small island in the Solomon Islands. The night before, his boat, PT-109, had been split in half by the Japanese destroyer Amagiri.


The U.S. First Provisional Marine Brigade arrives in Korea from the United States.


U.S. destroyer Maddox is reportedly attacked by North Vietnamese patrol boats.


Newsman Morley Safer films the destruction of a Vietnamese village by U.S. Marines.


Iraqi forces invade neighboring Kuwait.


Author William S. Burroughs (Naked Lunch), considered the godfather of the "Beat Generation" in American literature, dies at age 83.


Thanks to Bill

Personal story of the Ploesti oil field raid with B-14

Hello Skip,

August 1,1943 is a day of mourning for our family. My uncle Bill was a flight engineer/ball turret crewman in the 44th bomb Group assigned to the 8th Air force. Three B-24 groups from the 8th were OPCON'ed to the 9th USAAF in N.Africa. The B-17's did not have the legs for the mission to Ploesti. The Ploesti fields had 5 plants and the 44th's target was the Columbia Aquila factory. Leading in from the south to the plant was a rail system in which the Germans believed would be the route the 44th would follow so, they put a flak train on the rails. Remember, this was a low -level raid and the Germans were right. As the 44th tightened up the formation at the IP they followed the train tracks in and the train went with them firing into the B-24's. Hank Lasco the pilot who flew his B-24 next to my uncles plane which was piloted by Lt. Scrivener said that 5 miles from the target my uncles plane had the two right engines knocked out and the entire right side was in flames. Despite this the B-24 pressed on and arrived at the target, opened its bomb bay, and dropped 6 -500 lb time delayed bombs on the factory. Immediately, thereafter bombs from another group who had earlier misidentified the plant as their assignment -that group soon to be my father's- exploded and my uncles B-24 rolled inverted and crashed-all on board perished. The irony of valor here is subtle. My uncle's crew along with the entire 44th were the first B-24 units in the 8th. Bill who missed a mission due to bronchitis had 1 more to go to make 25 and rotate home. The other crew members had 25 missions and did not have to go to Ploesti. Nonetheless, all volunteered to take Bill on this mission so they could rotate back home together as the same crew that came to the 8th. Fate would have it different. The crews remains were recovered in 1947 and most are interned at Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery.

Incidentally, Hank Lasco's plane was also hit hard and he took a 20 mm round through his cheek-in one side out the other taking 10 teeth with it- lucky. His plane crashed next to my uncles but Hank survived and became a POW. I had the pleasure of meeting him in 2000. In those days 8th Air Force crew longevity was around 10 missions. In December of 1943 my father was assigned as a B-24 pilot to the 376th BG-the group that misidentified their target. His first mission was -yep-Ploesti. My family still remembers.


Thanks to Dutch and Shifty

Gulf of Tonkin Incident 55th Anniversary Commemoration

I am forwarding the below email from Dome Kerans (assisted by Al Gorthy AKA Kneepad) regarding the commemoration to be held on September 17th. I am sure some of you have already heard about this event via other means. However I would rather you get two emails regarding this commemoration than none at all.

Please pass on to anyone else you feel would interested in attending.

Note the evite link (for more info and to RSVP) included in Dome's email.

I hope to see some of you there.


Begin forwarded message:

From: Gary Kerans

Subject: Gulf of Tonkin Incident 55th Anniversary Commemoration

The Commemoration of the 55th Anniversary of the Gulf of Tonkin Incident will take place September 17, 2019 at NAS Lemoore, CA. The official event will commence at 1330 at the base theater followed by a reception at the O'Club around 1500. In attendance as honorees will be Capt John Nicholson, CDR Everrett Alvarez and LT Ron Boch of VA-144 who all flew together the night of August 4th off USS Constellation, CV-64, in what became the Gulf of Tonkin Incident.

As I mentioned in an earlier email Capt Al Gorthy, USN (RET) and I are assisting in setting up this commemoration. The leadership team at NASL is very supportive and excited about this event and extends the formal invitation link attached below. If you plan on attending you must RSVP via the "einvitations" link attached below so the NAS Lemoore folks can create an official list for entry on the base. Please try to respond by Friday August 16th.

As a side note the NAS Lemoore Air Show with the Blue Angels also takes place that weekend on Sept 21-22. Listed below are some of the local hotels for your convenience. They do get busy this week due to the airshow so consider an early reservation if you are attending from out of town. Hope to see you at NASL and help honor these fellow Naval Aviators.

If you have any questions our contact info is included below.


Gary Kerans

928 925-5099

Al Gorthy

913 912-0828 Cell

Click on the link below for your einvitation


Thanks to Ed

Sent to me by a friend. One of many great Blues videos, but not many like it.

Blue Angles Ridealong by a schoolteacher

"These are two videos (Part 1 and 2) of a Blue Angels ridealong out of El Centro last year. They are a reminder that there are still good things going on with the Navy, the USS Gerald Ford notwithstanding. I am so very impressed with the pilot and the way he talked to the lady throughout the flight and the great flight he gave her. She did a great job too. She got sick, but hung in there longer than I would have, and I have almost 7000 hours of flight time. I think you'll be impressed too."



Thanks to Mugs

Perfect Thunderbird cross over

Watch video. Virtually impossible to do this consistently.


Thanks to Carl


Thanks to Dutch

Incredible moment a plane with engine trouble makes a dramatic emergency landing in the middle of a Washington HIGHWAY

A KR2 single propeller plane was forced to land after fuel system malfuction

Washington State Trooper was driving down road when he noticed plane

His dashcam caught astonishing moment the plane came in to land on highway

No one was injured in the incident which happened on Pacific Avenue South

By Sophie Tanno For Mailonline

Published: 05:03 EDT, 2 August 2019 | Updated: 05:04 EDT, 2 August 2019

A plane battling with engine failure was forced to make an emergency landing on a Washington highway.

Nail-biting footage caught on a driver's dashcam shows the small plane coming in to land on Pacific Avenue South, just south of Seattle in Washington, on Thursday.

The pilot of the KR2 single propeller plane has been praised for successfully executing the tricky landing, guiding the plane around the traffic to touch down on the busy road.

Miraculously, no one was injured in the incident.

The rest of the article is at


Bonanza hard landing/gear partial collapse OSH

thanks to Otis and Dutch


Unforgiving of Human Error

thanks to THE Bear

Fighter Jet Crashes in 'Star Wars' Canyon, Killing Pilot

The canyon in Death Valley is popular with aviation enthusiasts looking for a fleeting glimpse of military jets swooping through.


Some news from around the world for 2 August

USA—Washington Formally Withdraws From INF Treaty U.S. State Dept. | 08/02/2019 The U.S. has confirmed its formal withdrawal from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty with Russia, reports the U.S. State Dept. The decision took effect on Friday, six months after Washington gave notice that it would leave the accord, said Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. "Russia is solely responsible for the treaty's demise," he said. Russian officials confirmed the termination of the INF treaty, reported the Tass news agency (Moscow). Washington has long held that Moscow has been developing the 9M729 (NATO: SSC-8) cruise missile, which violates the terms of the accord. Moscow has deployed multiple battalions of the missile across Russia, a source told Reuters. Russia denies that the missile violates the terms of the deal and has accused the U.S. of using the weapon as a pretext for withdrawal. The U.S. suspended its participation in the pact in February. Russia followed suit days later. The INF treaty entered effect in June 1988. It banned all land-based cruise and ballistic missiles with ranges of 300-3,400 miles (500-5,500 km).

USA—Air Force Orders Stand Down To Focus On Suicide Prevention Air Force Times | 08/02/2019 Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Dave Goldfein has ordered all wings to stand down after an increase in the number of suicides, reports the Air Force Times. At least 78 Air Force personnel have taken their lives so far this year, Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force Kaleth Wright said on Thursday. That figure is 28 more than at the same point last year, he noted. Commanders will have until Sept. 15 to hold a "resilience tactical pause," during which units will focus on addressing the problem, said Goldfein. The pause will be similar to last year's one-day safety stand-down, reported Air Force magazine. The service will not dictate what commanders do during the pause. Guidance will be provided through the resilience directorate.

USA—Defense Spending Gets $45 Billion Boost Over 2 Years Defense News | 08/02/2019 The Senate has approved a budget plan that includes a roughly $45 billion boost to military funding over two years, reports Defense News. The plan passed on Thursday 67 to 28. President Trump is expected to sign the measure on Friday. Under the budget, military spending will increase from $716 billion in fiscal 2019 to $738 billion in fiscal 2020 and $740 billion in fiscal 2021. The agreement suspends the debt ceiling until July 31, 2021 and averts the possibility of a government shutdown in the fall, noted the Washington Post.

USA—CNO Nominee Acknowledges Navy Failures In Ford-Class Carrier Program Military.Com | 08/02/2019 The Pentagon's nominee for the next Navy chief admitted that the service had made mistakes in the development of its new class of aircraft carriers, reports Vice Adm. Michael Gilday faced tough questioning by lawmakers during his confirmation hearing to be the next chief of naval operations on Wednesday. Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.), the chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, slammed the Gerald R. Ford-class aircraft carrier program, saying that the problems with weapons elevators, radar, catapults and arresting gear "ought to be criminal." Gilday agreed that there were significant lessons to be learned from the way new technologies are developed, including the need to test new systems on the ground before installing them on ships. Gilday also noted progress in integrating the Ford's radar as well as catapult and arresting gear. Only two of the carrier's 11 weapons elevators are working which has delayed its post-shakedown availability to October. The admiral said that if he were confirmed, he would be open about ongoing challenges with existing programs and ensure that future projects avoid the same problems, reported the USNI News. On Thursday, the Senate unanimously confirmed Vice Adm. Gilday as the next CNO, reported the Military Times.

USA—Billings Littoral Combat Ship Ready To Enter Service Dept. Of Defense | 08/02/2019 The U.S. Navy is set to commission its newest Freedom-class littoral combat ship, reports the Dept. of Defense. The Billings (LCS-15) will formally join the fleet during a ceremony on Saturday in Key West, Fla. The Billings, named after the largest city in Montana, will be homeported in Mayport, Fla. Sen. John Tester (D-Mont.) will deliver the principal address. His wife is the ship's sponsor. The ship will be the 17th littoral combat ship to enter service and the eighth from the Freedom class, reported the Miami Herald.

Germany—Navy Chooses NH90 To Replace Sea Lynx As Standard Shipboard Helicopter Defense-Aerospace | 08/02/2019 The German navy has decided on a replacement for its aging Sea Lynx helicopters, reports The NH90 will replace the Sea Lynx Mk 88A as the navy's standard shipboard helicopter, according to a German navy press release. Vice Adm. Joachim Ruhle, the representative of the inspector general of the German armed forces, approved the helicopter's acquisition on July 29. The first helicopters are expected to be delivered by 2025. The multirole frigate helicopter (MRFH) is a German-specific variant of the NH90 NFH and the French NH90 Caiman (NFRS). The NFH variant is currently in service with Italy, Norway, Belgium and the Netherlands. The helicopters will be equipped with sonar, radar and torpedoes and serve as sensor and weapon carriers with underwater and above-water capability. The NH90s will also be able to conduct transport and search-and-rescue operations.

Slovak Republic—Lockheed Wins Deal For Slovak F-16s Dept. Of Defense | 08/02/2019 The Pentagon has announced a contract award to Lockheed Martin for F-16 fighter jets for the Slovak air force. On July 31, Lockheed Martin Aeronautics, Fort Worth, Texas, received a US$800 million contract to manufacture and support 14 F-16 Block 70 fighters for Slovakia, said a Defense Dept. release. The Slovak air force first selected the F-16 to replace its MiG-29s in July 2018, reported Defense News at the time. Adjusting for the value of support services included in the contract, the unit cost of the F-16s in the deal comes out to US$57.1 million, reported

Turkey—Military takes Delivery Of Final 4 Chinook Helicopters Ahval News | 08/02/2019 The Turkish military has taken delivery of its last four of 11 CH-47F cargo helicopters, reports the Ahval News (Turkey). The helicopters were handed over at the port of Izmir on Wednesday, said the U.S. Embassy in Turkey. The delivery occurred despite ongoing concerns about supplying advanced technologies to Turkey. Washington removed Ankara from the F-35 stealth fighter program last month after Turkey took delivery of Russian S-400 air defense systems. Turkish pilots in the U.S. to train on the stealth fighter were scheduled to return to Turkey on Thursday, reported Yeni Akit (Turkey).

North Korea—Yet Another Round Of Missiles Test-Fired Yonhap | 08/02/2019 North Korea has launched another series of projectiles into the Sea of Japan, reports the Yonhap news agency (Seoul). On Friday, two missiles were launched from Yonghung, South Hamgyong province, into the sea, said the South Korean Joint Chiefs of Staff. The weapons flew about 135 miles (220 km) at an altitude of about 15 miles (25 km) and reached a top speed of Mach 6.9, said the statement. The projectiles were believed to be ballistic missiles but further analysis is needed, said the president's office. Their flight path indicated similarities to the missiles that North Korea launched on Wednesday. On July 25 and 31, North Korea launched what were suspected to be KN-23 short-range ballistic missiles, which are said to be similar to the Russian Iskander.

South Korea—Tokyo Set To Up Economic Pressure Korea Times | 08/02/2019 The Japanese government is prepared to implement additional economic measures against South Korea after top-level talks failed to resolve their disputes, reports the Korea Times. On Thursday, South Korean Foreign Minister Kang Kyung Wha and her Japanese counterpart Taro Kono met on the sidelines of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Regional Forum in Bangkok. South Korea was seeking to prevent its removal from Japan's "white list" of countries that face minimal trade restrictions. Tokyo is set to move forward with the removal on Friday, said Japanese government sources cited by the Kyodo news agency. Should Japan remove Seoul from the white list, there will be significant ramifications to bilateral relations, said Kang, as quoted by the Yonhap news agency (Seoul). South Korea could choose not to renew a bilateral intelligence-sharing accord, she said. Bilateral relations have spiraled since the South Korean Supreme Court last year ordered Japanese firms to compensate Korean victims of forced labor during Japan's colonization of the peninsula from 1910 to 1945. Japan argues that the 1965 treaty normalizing relations included compensation that resolved all such demands going forward. In July, Japan implemented tougher restrictions on exports of materials used to manufacture superconductors and displays, citing security concerns. Seoul believes the moves are in retaliation for the court's ruling.

Thailand—String Of Explosions Hits ASEAN Security Conference Straits Times | 08/02/2019 At least four people have been injured in a series of blasts across Bangkok, reports the Straits Times (Singapore). On Friday, at least six explosive devices detonated around the Thai capital as leaders gathered for a security meeting of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). The blasts targeted two elevated rapid transit stations, a skyscraper, a government complex on the outskirts of the city and a residential area. Police found two fake bombs as well as one device that had not detonated. Four people were lightly injured in the explosions. Two men have been arrested in connection with the attack. There were no immediate claims of responsibility.

Afghanistan—Withdrawal On The Table In Talks With Taliban Washington Post | 08/02/2019 The U.S. is offering a significant troop drawdown in peace negotiations with the Taliban in Afghanistan, reports the Washington Post. Under the proposal, the U.S. would cut its forces from around 14,000 to 8,000 or 9,000 in return for a cease-fire and the renunciation of Al-Qaida as part of an initial deal to end the war, said U.S. officials. It would also require the Taliban to begin direct talks with the Afghan government on a larger peace deal. The militant group has so far refused to enter into direct talks with Kabul. One official said the deal was about 80 to 90 percent completed, noting that the last 10 or 20 percent would be difficult. Further troop cuts would be discussed as part of talks with both Kabul and the Taliban.

Sudan—SPLM-N Rebels Declare Cease-Fire In Support Of Transition To Civilian Government Radio Dabanga | 08/02/2019 The Sudan People's Liberation Movement-North (SPLM-N) has announced a five-month cease-fire, reports Radio Dabanga (Sudan). The truce, announced on Wednesday, will run from Aug. 1 to Dec. 31. Sudan People's Liberation Army units will only take action in self-defense and in defense of the people over that timeframe, SPLM-N faction leader Abdelaziz El Hilu said in a statement. The cease-fire is a goodwill gesture to promote "the peaceful resolution of the Sudanese problem and to give an opportunity for the immediate and smooth transfer of power to civilians," Hilu said. Earlier this week, SPLM-N confirmed its commitment to negotiating with the government being formed between the Sudanese opposition and military government.

Sudan—Security Forces Open Fire On Protesters, Killing 4 Sudan Tribune | 08/02/2019 Sudanese security personnel have killed four protesters while attempting to disperse a demonstration in Omdurman, reports the Sudan Tribune (Paris). On Thursday, security forces opened fire on a demonstration expressing solidarity with the protesters killed by the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF) in El Obeid last week, said the Central Committee of Sudan Doctors. Civil society and opposition groups organized thousands of marches across Sudan following the killings. The Sudanese Transitional Military Council has since acknowledged that the killings in El Obeid were the responsibility of the RSF and said that the perpetrators have been arrested.

Morocco—Rabat Wants To Buy Apache Attack Helicopters From U.S. Defence Web | 08/02/2019 Morocco is seeking to purchase attack helicopters from the U.S., reports Defence Web (South Africa). The US$1.5 billion proposal covers 24 AH-64 Apache aircraft, according to a country profile on Rabat selected the Apache over the Turkish T129 ATAK and Bell AH-1Z Viper in a competition earlier this year. The Moroccan military currently does not operate a dedicated attack helicopter. Earlier this month, Morocco also requested the transfer of two C-130H transports under the Excess Defense Articles (EDA) program. Morocco is the biggest customer of U.S. weapons in Africa.

Ghana—Deal Inked For New Naval Infrastructure, Patrol Boats Defence Web | 08/02/2019 Ghana is boosting its naval capabilities to better protect its oil and gas infrastructure, reports Defence Web (South Africa). The Ghanaian government recently finalized a US$200 million contract to build a forward operating base in Edzinlibo in the Western Region, the website reported on Thursday. A separate contract for up to six offshore patrol boats was also signed with Accra-based Gulf Frontiers. Paramount Group of South Africa is expected to construct the vessels. The announcement was made last week by Defense Minister Dominic Nitiwul during the Maritime Defence Exhibition and Conference in Accra. The minister noted that the navy was about to take delivery of two more offshore patrol vessels with significant endurance to patrol Ghana's exclusive economic zone (EEZ). Naval activity in the region has been focused on preventing "petro-piracy," the theft of refined petroleum products, since the discovery of offshore oil and gas resources. Ghana is also dealing with piracy; illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing; and maritime pollution.

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