Naval Reactors: Still No Sense Of Humor
[Intel Source: The Sub Report] Lately, it seems like carrier Sailors have been turning out humorous "music videos" to improve morale and unit cohesion. So what happens when Sailors trying to do something to make their lives more enjoyable draw the attention of NR? Pretty much what you'd expect. From an article in today's San Diego Union-Tribune:
The Navy has pulled the plug on a YouTube video shot aboard the San Diego-based aircraft carrier Ronald Reagan because it shows sailors inappropriately using safety equipment, a Navy spokesman said.So how do you think NR would pass on their displeasure? Maybe a P4 message? Nope, they had to rub it in the CO's face as much as possible to show him who his boss really is.
The four-minute, 18-second music clip, titled “Women of CVN76: 'That Don't Impress Me Much,' ” was posted May 23 on the popular Web site for videos. It was viewed more than 31,000 times before its removal last week – reportedly at the urging of Adm. Kirkland Donald, the Navy's director of nuclear propulsion...
...The theme of the Reagan video, set to a tune by country singer Shania Twain, is that women serving aboard the Reagan can do the same jobs as men. Until 1994, the Pentagon barred women from serving on combat ships.
“The video was a lighthearted and positive depiction of the service of women officers and sailors aboard aircraft carriers and in Navy squadrons,” Brown said. “It showed the good humor and camaraderie of the ship's crew.”
But it also included fleeting shots of the door to the ship's nuclear power plant and of a sailor dancing while wearing a full-body radiation suit – items that might alarm the Navy's nuclear-propulsion officials, who are hypersensitive about the security. Under Pentagon rules, images of any part of a ship's nuclear plant cannot be shown to foreign nationals.
“The nuclear community is totally paranoid,” said Norman Polmar, an independent Navy analyst from Alexandria, Va. “They should be security conscious. But we're not the only people in the world with nuclear technology.”
Brown denied that anything in the video compromised operational security. What worried Navy officials, he said, was the “lack of propriety” in a few scenes involving the use of safety equipment.
Neither the Navy nor the ship's command sponsored the video, Brown said. But “Women of CVN76” spotlighted sailors from many departments of the carrier. Even the commanding officer, Capt. Terry Kraft, made a cameo appearance.
Brown said someone brought the video to the Navy's attention last week.
Kraft was then summoned to the Pentagon for a meeting with Donald, a four-star flag officer who is near the top of the Navy's chain of command.Betcha that makes sure that no carrier CO will ever appear in a video again. Wouldn't want to risk having something that might be viewed by potential recruits showing them that senior Navy officers have anything resembling a sense of humor.
Update 1049 18 Aug: I should point out that I'm still enough of a nuke to recognize that it was inappropriate for the Sailors to use safety or emergency equipment to have fun with; still, that could have been handled by having the command do training. Calling the CO in for a one-on-one with the Admiral (obviously not in the Pentagon, as the story says, but most likely at NR HQ) was the overkill I didn't like.