BLDG 619
PEARL HARBOR, HI 96860-4664

06 October 1999

I’m sending out an S.O.S. This is a distress call to save our submarines! Over the next ten years our country plans to prematurely lay to rest more than 190 submarine years. That’s throwing away more than six perfectly good submarines!

While we may save some money in the near term, what we as a nation lose is priceless capability - a capability that statistically has been steadily on the rise. Knowing this, it’s penny-wise, but pound-foolish.

At the same time submarines are being cut up early, the national tasking for submarines has more than doubled. And if trends remain unchanged, increasingly more critical requirements will go unfulfilled. There is already a deficit in the number of submarines required to satisfy national interests in the Pacific, and we can no longer meet the high-priority tasks assigned by national leadership.

But we do have a chance to stem the tide, but only with immediate action. Today, we have the opportunity to salvage eight Los Angeles class fast-attack submarines currently slated for early retirement. Additionally, our country has a once-in-a-life-time chance to convert four of the most capable, stealthy Ohio-class submarines to undersea battleships, capable of carrying 154 Tomahawk cruise missiles and dozens of Navy SEALs.

One of these submarines could single-handedly relieve an entire carrier battle group of Tomahawk responsibilities, which in turn would be available to protect our interests in other important areas.

Make no mistake about it –this is a distress call. We need your assistance now to help support making an investment in our collective future by helping us navigate in these perilous waters. Together, and with immediate action, we can stay the course.

Help “Save Our Submarines.”

RADM Al H. Konetzni
Commander Submarine Force
U.S. Pacific Fleet

Click on thumbnail for full image

Submarine Savings
Following the fall of the Berlin Wall, the Quadrennial Defense Review (QDR) stated that the country could afford only 50 submarines; 25 of which would reside in the Pacific. The forthcoming JCS SSN Study will indicate a significantly larger force is required to meet national security needs. Since 1995, however, 165 submarine years have been lost to early submarine inactivation. Without intervention, the country stands to lose nearly another 190 submarine years.

Click on thumbnail for full image

Pacific Submarine Landscape
Despite the steadily increasing demand for attack submarines in the Pacific, we continue to prematurely strike subs from our inventory and there is no relief in sight. This will further exacerbate an already overworked and overstretched force.

Click on thumbnail for full image

Underwater Battleships
As the strategic submarine force shrinks from 18 to 14 ballistic-missile submarines, four of the force's oldest submarines have approximately 20 years of service left on each hull. Provided conversion funds are earmarked now, this country has an unprecedented opportunity to add truly stealthy platforms from which up to 154 Tomahawk missiles and dozens of Navy Seals could be deployed.

Click on thumbnail for full image

Saving Submarines
In order to successfully retain these fleet workhorses, action is required NOW if sufficient funds are to be identified for their retention. But you need to help spread the word. Please, lend your support.