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"Ghost Decommissioning"

Overhead View of Primary Weapon Systems of DD-963 Spruance Class Destroyer "Spru-Can"

When senior Navy and Pentagon personnel want to direct new ship business to their future employers they have been known to target ships for removal from the fleet. The pattern is to shortchange the targeted ships on routine/major maintenance and new threat upgrades over a period of years. This results in the gradual material degradation of the ship and rapidly increasing costs to get the ship back to top material condition. Then the Navy will make the case that getting the ship back into acceptable material condition plus the cost of new threat upgrades is so expensive that the Congress is better off decommissioning the ship and spending the money saved on that and its operating cost on new ships.

This "Ghost Decommissioning" exercise was executed on the Navy's best ASW ship, the Spruance Class Destroyer (DD-963) , in order to fund the LCS and the Zumwalt.

Here is a nice piece on this history of the Spruance, it capabilities and its premature decommissioning.

Ticonderoga class cruisers are currently being subjected to "ghost decommissioning" and many are now undeployable and are in poor material condition.

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