Italy’s 3 new frigates at sea together for the first time

Carlo Bergamini (F590) is a general purpose frigate while Virginio Fasan (F591) and Carlo Margottini (F592) are ASW variants. A total of 6 GP and 4 ASW frigates are planned for the Italian Navy. France will take 7 ASW frigates and 2 air-defence frigates. Morocco has accepted a single frigate into service.

“Nuovo successo per la Marina Militare e l’industria italiana” – Le prime tre FREMM prendono il largo

Golfo di La Spezia – Nel corso della mattina del 26 settembre il Golfo dei poeti ha tenuto a battesimo Nave Carlo Margottini che ha effettuato la sua prima uscita in mare. L’ultima “nata” del programma FREMM, strategico ed ambizioso programma di costruzioni navali militari in Europa che vede impegnati Francia ed Italia, rappresenta un successo programmatico nato dalla vincente sinergia tra la cantieristica italiana e la Marina Militare.

Nave Margottini, unitamente alle altre due FREMM (fregate europee multi-missione) italiane, realizzate da Orizzonte Sistemi Navali, la joint-venture fra Fincantieri e Selex ES, hanno lasciato per la prima volta tutte insieme i moli del cantiere del Muggiano per il mare aperto.

La capoclasse nave Carlo Bergamini, consegnata alla Marina Militare lo scorso maggio e le gemelle Virginio Fasan e Carlo Margottini, che dovrebbero essere consegnate rispettivamente entro fine anno ed il prossimo febbraio, hanno effettuato una serie di evoluzioni e prove nel corso della giornata volte a testare l’efficienza dei moderni imbarcati.

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VIDEO: Readiness and Care of Vessels in Inactive Status (1945)

America’s “No.2 Nuke Commander” Suspended From Duty

Not arrested or charged, but suspension from such a high-profile job seems a reasonable precaution. The chap sitting in that seat can do without any distractions.

No. 2 nuke commander suspended amid casino probe

WASHINGTON — The No. 2 officer at the military command in charge of all U.S. nuclear war-fighting forces is suspected in a case involving counterfeit gambling chips at a western Iowa casino and has been suspended from his duties, officials said.

Vice Adm. Timothy Giardina
U.S. Navy

Navy Vice Adm. Tim Giardina has not been arrested or charged, Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation special agent David Dales said Saturday. The state investigation is ongoing.

Giardina, deputy commander at U.S. Strategic Command, was suspended on Sept. 3 and is under investigation by the Naval Criminal Investigative Service, a Strategic Command spokeswoman said.

The highly unusual action against a high-ranking officer at Strategic Command was made more than three weeks ago but not publicly announced at that time. The command is located at Offutt Air Force Base near Omaha, Neb.

Air Force Gen. Robert Kehler, who heads Strategic Command, suspended Giardina, according to the command’s top spokeswoman, Navy Capt. Pamela Kunze. Giardina is still assigned to the command but is prohibited from performing duties related to nuclear weapons and other issues requiring a security clearance, she said.

Kehler has recommended to Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel that Giardina be reassigned, Kunze said. Giardina has been the deputy commander of Strategic Command since December 2011. He is a career submarine officer and prior to starting his assignment there was the deputy commander and chief of staff at U.S. Pacific Fleet.

DCI agents stationed at the Horseshoe Casino in Council Bluffs, Iowa, discovered the counterfeit chips, Dales said. He would not say when the discovery was made or how much in counterfeit chips was found, only that “it was a significant monetary amount.”

Council Bluffs is located across the Missouri River from Omaha.

“We were able to detect this one pretty quickly and jump on it,” Dales said. He declined to give specifics on how authorities determined that casino chips had been counterfeited or how Giardina might have been involved.

Strategic Command oversees the military’s nuclear fighter units, including the Navy’s nuclear-armed submarines and the Air Force’s nuclear bombers and nuclear land-based missiles.

Kunze said Strategic Command did not announce the suspension because Giardina remains under investigation and action on Kehler’s recommendation that Giardina be reassigned is pending. The suspension was first reported by the Omaha World-Herald.

Kunze said a law enforcement investigation of Giardina began June 16. Kehler became aware of this on July 16, and the following day he asked the Naval Criminal Investigative Service to begin a probe.

The suspension is yet another blow to the military’s nuclear establishment. Last spring the nuclear missile unit at Minot Air Force Base, N.D., pulled 17 launch control officers off duty after a problematic inspection and later relieved of duty the officer in charge of training and proficiency.

In August a nuclear missile unit at Malmstrom Air Force Base, Mont., failed a nuclear safety and security inspection; nine days later an officer in charge of the unit’s security forces was relieved of duty.

http://www.stripes.com/news/navy/no-2-nuke-commander-suspended-amid-casino-probe-1.244005

PHOTEX: USNS Charles Drew SH-60 conducts vertical replenishment with USS Preble

130926-N-TX154-581PHILIPPINE SEA (Sept. 26, 2013) An SH-60S Sea Hawk helicopter from the Island Knights of Helicopter Combat Support Squadron (HSC) 25 delivers supplies to the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Preble (DDG 88) during an underway replenishment with the Military Sealift Command dry cargo and ammunition ship USNS Charles Drew (T-AKE 10). Preble is on patrol with the George Washington Carrier Strike Group in the U.S. 7th Fleet area of responsibility supporting security and stability in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Paul Kelly/Released)

The end of an era… Lloyd’s List goes “online only” after 279-years in print

The end of an era for the world’s oldest newspaper.

279-year-old Lloyd’s List newspaper goes digital

A newspaper that began life 279 years ago as a notice pinned to a London coffee shop wall, will be available online only from the end of the year.

Lloyd’s List is to go fully digital from December.

The last print publication of Lloyd’s List, which carries news for the shipping industry, will be on 20 December.

A survey carried out earlier this year found that only 25 of its customers used the print edition alone.

Editor Richard Meade said it was “just a natural part of our evolution”.

He said the aim had changed little since 1734, when the notice pinned to a coffee shop wall offered customers shipping news and information.

“We haven’t changed that much. But now [customers] can access us in any coffee shop in the world,” he added.

Mr Meade said that while nostalgia weighed on the company’s shoulders, customers paid a premium for information and did not want to wait for it to come by post.

Lloyd’s List was founded by Edward Lloyd, who posted details of ship arrivals, departures and casualties on the wall of his coffee shop for the benefit of London’s 18th Century maritime community.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-24272336

OTDIH 26 September 1580 Francis Drake completed his circumnavigation of the Earth

On this day in history, 26th September 1580, the Golden Hind sailed into Plymouth and completed Francis Drake’s circumnavigation of the Earth.

He was knighted at Deptford on 4th April 1581.

Map of Sir Francis Drake’s circumnavigation of the globe 1577-1580 engraved by Nicola van Sype.