Excerpts from "Sea Power"

April 1999

Reason's area of responsibility spans the Atlantic Ocean from the North Pole to the South Pole, and includes the Caribbean and the waters off South America extending to 92 degrees west longitude in the Pacific (the Galapagos Islands). The Atlantic Fleet has 195 ships and submarines and more than 1,300 aircraft.  From this pool Reason deploys a carrier battle group and an amphibious ready group every 153 days or so to support the requirements of U.S. warfighting CINCs in the Atlantic, Europe, or Southwest Asia. That means regular deployments to the Mediterranean, Adriatic, Persian Gulf, and Indian Ocean or anywhere else where U.S. naval forces can maintain peace and/or protect U.S. and allied interests. 

Reason assumed command in December 1996. A nuclear-trained surface warfare officer, he describes himself as an advocate for Sailors, committed to improving both their working conditions and their quality of life. "As a four-star general admiral I get to drive some of those things" he said. 

Years ago, when he commanded the guided-missile destroyer USS Coontz, Reason recalled, the ship visited the port city of Lome, the capital of Togo, a tiny nation on the west coast of Africa. Coontz was the first war ship to dock there since a German cruiser during World War II, he remembers. "I had thousands of people lined up, sunrise to sunset, just walking around the decks of that ship, showing their children what a warship is and its guns and letting them touch this monstrous steel. We should have been there many times before. There's an appreciation of the United States by what we can build and what we can do. Only the most prosperous nations can build ships and send them all over the world.


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