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Cape Texas in choppy seas.

We at the Maritime Administration were pleased to see the article in the July 2003 edition of National Defense, "Navy's Sealift Command Picks Up the Pace," by Harold Kennedy, noting that cargo moved much faster in the recent Iraqi conflict than it did in 1991. That is something we know to be true, and we think it needed to be said. The article, however, contained some errors.

For instance, the caption under the ship's picture in the paper edition of the magazine, a picture not included in the electronic version, describes the ship as the MV Cape Texas, a Military Sealift Command roll-on/roll-off ship. The Cape Texas is a Ready Reserve Force ship, owned and maintained by the Maritime Administration. The ship in the picture is not the Cape Texas, bur the Spica, which is a Military Sealift Command ship, and is identified as such by the yellow and blue stack stripes. All RRF ships, including the Cape Texas, have red, white mad blue stack stripes.

The article says that the Ready" Reserve Force is a fleet of 90 ships; at the moment the RRF numbers 68. I would like to bring to your attention the fact that 40 RRF ships participated in Operations Enduring Freedom mad Iraqi Freedom.

The combination of Military Sealift Command, the Ready Reserve Force, and U.S. flag commercial ships have carried 85 percent of the materiel so far for dais conflict and rebuilding effort. We are proud that the merchant mariners are serving their country efficiently and without fanfare, as the merchant marine has done since the founding of the United States.

James E. Caponiti

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Title Annotation:readers forum
Author:Caponiti, James E.
Publication:National Defense
Article Type:Letter to the Editor
Date:Sep 1, 2003
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