Sunday, August 26, 2007

George W. Bush 8, U.S. Coast Guard 0

It's a sobering thought that, despite their best efforts, the terrorists have failed to sink or destroy a single U.S. vessel of war. The Bush administration has managed to destroy no less than eight U.S. Coast Guard Cutters. The 9/11 attacks caught the Coast Guard unprepared for its new role of coastal defense against terrorism:
So five years ago the Coast Guard undertook a massive modernization program called "Deepwater" and ended up way over its head. As correspondent Steve Kroft reports, the $24 billion project has turned into a fiasco that has set new standards for incompetence, and triggered a Justice Department investigation.[1]
So says CBS News' "60 Minutes."

Consider the eight cutters the Bushies destroyed:
You can begin with the fact that the Coast Guard spent nearly $100 million to ruin eight patrol boats. The plan was to take the aging workhorses of the fleet, the 110-foot Island Class patrol boats, and lengthen them by 13 feet, adding a launch ramp for small inflatable boats and expanding the superstructure. But something went drastically wrong at the Bollinger Shipyard near New Orleans, where the first eight boats were extended.

"What you see is a lot of buckling. In the floor. And spaces where you know something is bending that shouldn't be bending in other words it should be flat," Cummings recalls.

After just a few weeks on the water, all eight boats experienced severe structural problems and had to be pulled out of service. They are currently tied up at a pier at the Coast Guard’s Baltimore yard waiting to be decommissioned. Their problems, the Coast Guard says, are too serious to be fixed.[2]
This is a story you have to read to believe.

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