Friday, September 25, 2020

Guided-Missile Destroyer "USS Kidd Arrives in Washington Flying a Pirate Flag. Here’s Why It’s Authorized to Actually Do That"

From gCaptain, September 24:
Guided-missile destroyer USS Kidd (DDG 100) pulls into its homeport of Naval Station Everett (NSE), 
September 21, 2020. U.S. Navy Photo
The arrival of the U.S. Navy’s guided-missile destroyer USS Kidd at its homeport in Everett, Washington this week drew quite a bit of attention online, but it wasn’t because of the millions worth of drugs it had seized during its counter-narcotics deployment.

Instead, it was the giant “Jolly Roger” pirate flag it was flying from its mast.

The USS Kidd (DDG-100) arrived at Naval Station Everett on September 21 following its deployment to the U.S. 4th Fleet area of operations for enhanced counter-narcotics operations missions in the Caribbean Sea and eastern Pacific Ocean.

During their deployment, Kidd’s sailors aided in the recovery of 805 kilograms of suspected cocaine worth over an estimated wholesale value of $30 million; rendered assistance to a fishing vessel in distress, towing the vessel over 200 nautical miles to safety; battled a bout of COVID-19; and participated in a passing exercise (PASSEX) with the El Salvadoran navy.

So why the skull and crossbones?
The story actually dates back to the first voyage of the original vessel to bear the Kidd name, USS KIDD DD-661, Fletcher-class destroyers launched in 1943 by the Federal Shipbuilding & Dry-dock Company in Kearny, New Jersey....