Keeping the blogosphere posted on the goings on of the world of submarines since late 2004... and mocking and belittling general foolishness wherever it may be found. Idaho's first and foremost submarine blog. (If you don't like something on this blog, please E-mail me; don't call me at home.)

Friday, August 19, 2005

USS Kearsarge ESG Attacked by Rockets

The flagship and another amphib of the USS Kearsarge Expeditionary Strike Group were attacked by Katyusha rockets in the Jordanian port of Aqaba today. A rocket, apparently fired from a warehouse in Aqaba near the docks where USS Ashland (LSD-48) and USS Kearsarge (LHD-3) were moored. According to a statement from Central Command, the rocket flew over the bow of USS Ashland and hit another warehouse. According to the Jordanian government, the warehouse the rockets were fired from "...had been rented a few days ago by four people of Iraqi and Egyptian descent."
The USS Kearsarge Expeditionary Strike Group carries the 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit, and consists of the flagship and the amphibious transport dock USS Ponce (LPD 15), the dock landing ship USS Ashland (LSD 48), the cruiser USS Normandy (CG 60), the guided-missile destroyer USS Gonzalez (DDG 66), the guided-missile frigate USS Kauffman (FFG 59), and the fast-attack submarine USS Scranton (SSN 756). Apparently only the Kearsarge and Ashland were in port at the time.
Submarines attached to Expeditionary Strike Groups are fairly new; the first deployment I remember of a submarine with these groups (which used to be called Amphibious Ready Groups) was back in 2003, when USS Greeneville (SSN-772) deployed with ESG-1. Later, my old ship USS Connecticut (SSN 22) deployed with ESG-2. Normally, the submarines are only loosely affiliated with the Strike Group, and spend most of their time doing their own thing.
This attack brings to mind the attack on USS Cole in Yemen back in 2000. It makes me think that our improved force protection capabilities are paying off, if the best the jihadis can do is fire a rocket at our ships, and miss at that.

Going deep...

Update 2027 19 Aug: They apparently haven't caught the attackers yet. I think it's important in this case to ensure that the Egyptians, when caught, are returned to their own government for questioning.

Update 2109 19 Aug: Eagle1 has much more on the attack.

Update 1930 22 Aug: Looks like the ringleader has been arrested.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Back in the last century, long before 9/11 and slightly less than a year before the mighty USS Cole was attacked, we visited the port city of Aqaba, Jordan. See for a few of the details. This was the second SSN visit to Jordan. The first was conducted by the USS Kamehameha earlier in 1999. When we were there on the mighty Scranton, we were in Threatcon B and this was the only time in my career that I got to wear a pistol when standing SDO. Kind of cool. We had a good time there with some folks even going to Petra to visit. It was very sobering when the King of Jordan arrived for his orientation cruise (lots of fun for me as NAV in those confined territorial waters) with all his armed guards. I am sorry to see that security there has significantly decreased.

8/19/2005 9:48 AM

Blogger Chap said...

Yes, indeedy, the first was the Mighty Kam.

If I may permit myself a hearty "IMUA!".

King A. visited us, too, as he used to run the country's SOF when he was merely a junior son, and we brought our own SOF to play with.

The Jordanian CNO died recently. Like many other military senior leaders, he had children with dual American citizenship.

Aqaba is walking or swimming distance from Eilat, Israel, by the way, and Egypt is a long swim in a different direction, and Saudi down the road a short piece. It's a tight little spot.

When we smush the AQ I'm taking the family to Petra and diving in the Gulf of Aqaba. Beautiful stuff.

8/19/2005 2:04 PM

Anonymous Joanna said...

In my view every person ought to look at it.

9/19/2012 7:44 AM

Blogger Unknown said...

I was attached to the USS Kearsarge at the time! Scary stuff to deal with.

3/18/2013 9:09 PM


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