Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Military confirms USS Oklahoma City's move to Guam

Military confirms USS Oklahoma City's move to Guam

By Brett Kelman • Pacific Daily News • December 3, 2009

A new submarine will move to Guam as part of the Navy's response to the threat from a growing number of submarines in the Pacific, according to a press release sent by the military yesterday.

The USS Oklahoma City will be shifted here to replace the USS City of Corpus Christi, which must move to Hawaii for repairs. The switch will happen between fall 2010 and spring 2011, the release states.

"Shifting homeports for USS Oklahoma City and USS City of Corpus Christi ensure that our most technologically advanced submarines are forward, so we maintain our ability to dominate the sea base and shape potential adversaries," said Rear Adm. Douglas J. McAneny, according to the release.

The 2006 Quadrennial Defense Review mandated U.S. Navy to homeport 60 percent of its submarines in the Pacific by the end of next year. The review official recognized the importance of the region and "the increased threat posed by the proliferation of submarines ..." the release states.

Since the mandate, seven submarines have been transferred to the Pacific. Currently, 31 of the U.S. Navy's 53 fast attack submarines are home ported in the Pacific. Eighteen of those are in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.

The movement of the USS Oklahoma City and USS City of Corpus Christi are not part of the coming military buildup, and increases in the total number of submarines in Guam will be temporary, the release states.

The USS Oklahoma City is a Los Angeles-class fast-attack submarine that currently makes port in Norfolk, Va. It was commissioned in 1988 and has a crew of 13 officers and 121 enlisted sailors, according to a release from the office of Delegate Madeleine Bordallo.

Bordallo reported two weeks ago that the submarines would shift ports, but the military did not confirm it until yesterday.

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