The United States Navy (USN) is a branch of the United States Armed Forces responsible for conducting naval operations. Its stated mission is "to maintain, train and equip combat-ready Naval forces capable of winning wars, deterring aggression and maintaining freedom of the seas." The U.S. Navy currently has nearly 500,000 personnel on active duty or in the Navy Reserve and operates 278 ships in active service and more than 4,000 aircraft.
The U.S. Navy traces its origins to the Continental Navy
, which was established during the American Revolutionary War
disbanded in 1790. The United States Constitution
, though, provided the legal basis for a seaborne military force by giving Congress
the power "to provide and maintain a navy." Depredations against American shipping by Barbary Coast corsairs
spurred Congress to employ this power in 1794 by passing the Naval Act of 1794
ordering the construction and manning of six frigates
. The U.S. Navy came into international prominence in the 20th century, especially during World War II
. Operating in both the European and Pacific theaters
, it was a part of the conflict from the onset of American military involvement from the attack on Pearl Harbor
to Japan's official surrender
aboard the USS Missouri
. The U.S. Navy had a role in the subsequent Cold War
, in which it evolved into a nuclear deterrent and crisis response force while preparing for a possible global war with the Soviet Union
The 21st-century U.S. Navy maintains a sizeable presence in the world, deploying in such areas as East Asia, Southern Europe, and the Middle East. Its ability to project force onto the littoral regions of the world, engage in forward areas during peacetime, and rapidly respond to regional crises makes it an active player in American foreign and defence policy.
The craft used by the suspected pirates floats in front of the USS Ashland
Piracy charges dismissed by judge
Original articles by Steve Szkotak, The Associated Press.
Summary: Piracy charges against six Somali's accused of attacking the USS Ashland were dismissed Tuesday after the judge ruled that the U.S. government failed to make a case for piracy. Defense attorneys had argued that the men did not seize or rob the Ashland and therefore not committed piracy. The six were accused of attacking the Ashland, which was destroyed by 25mm fire from Ashland. Seven lesser charges have not been ruled upon. The men claim only to have been ferrying refugees.
The Battle of Midway was a pivotal naval battle in the Pacific Theater of World War II. It took place from June 4 to June 7, 1942, approximately one month after the Battle of the Coral Sea, and six months after the Empire of Japan's attack on Pearl Harbor that had led to a formal state of war between the United States of America (U.S.) and Japan. During the battle, the United States Navy defeated a Japanese attack against Midway Atoll (located northwest of Hawaii) and destroyed four Japanese aircraft carriers and a heavy cruiser while losing a carrier and a destroyer.
The battle was a crushing defeat for the Japanese and is widely regarded as the most important naval battle of World War II. The battle permanently weakened the Japanese Navy, particularly the loss of over 200 naval aviators. Strategically, the U.S. Navy was able to seize the initiative in the Pacific and go on the offensive.
The Japanese plan of attack, which included a secondary attack against the Aleutian Islands by a smaller fleet, was an attempt by the Japanese to lure America's few remaining carriers into a trap and sink them. The Japanese also intended to occupy Midway Atoll to extend Japan's defensive perimeter further from its home islands. This operation was considered preparatory for further attacks against Fiji and Samoa, as well as the invasion of Hawai’i. After scoring a clear victory, American forces retired. Japan's loss of four fleet carriers stopped the expansion of the Japanese Empire in the Pacific.
John Paul Jones (July 6, 1747–July 18, 1792) born in Scotland was America's first well-known naval hero in the American Revolutionary War. Though his naval career never reached the heights predicted for him after his victory over the Serapis, Jones remains a highly regarded battle commander. During his engagement with Serapis, Jones uttered the legendary reply to a British officer's surrender request, "I have not yet begun to fight."
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