U.S. Navy collisions: More than a coincidence?

Latest U.S. Navy collision isfourth involving a Seventh Fleet warship this year

HaveUS Navy vessels become victims of hacking asks Rickards

Chief of Naval Operations, Adm. John Richardson, has not ruledout cyber intrusion

Once is happenstance. Twice is coincidence. The third time it’s enemy action Ian Fleming

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Source: Navylive

The tragic U.S.Navy incident of theUSS John McCain earlier in the week has raised several questions about the cause. Many are wondering if it was more than human error given this is not an isolated incident.

In the last year there have been four collisions in the area, including the latest one. So far in 2017, 17 US sailors have died in the Pacific southeast in events which have been attributed to accidental collisions with civilian vessels.

  • In January the USS Antietam ran aground near Yosuka, Japan.
  • In May the USS Champlain collided with a South Korean fishing vessel.
  • On June 17th seven US sailors died when the USS Fitzgerald – operating near Yokuska – collided with a container ship from the Philippines. It was determined that the bridge team lost situational awareness.

Pentagon and intelligence insider Jim Rickards points outwhen the same basic incident happens twice, you have to raise your eyebrows. When you have a low-probability event that happens twice, in other words, the likelihood of coincidence becomes infinitesimal.

Rickards and others are wondering if the Navy’s decades-old reliance on old electronic guidance systems has become the victim ofmultiple cyberattacks.

There are two main ways a hacker can interfere with a warship: by attacking its GPS or a malware attack on its computer network.

Rickards isn’t the only one asking questions. Experts at cybersecurity firms have also been voicing their concerns, as reported by Tim JohnsoninMcClatchyDC:

When you are going through the Strait of Malacca, you can’t tell me that a Navy destroyer doesn’t have a full navigation team going with full lookouts on every wing and extra people on radar, said Jeff Stutzman, chief intelligence officer at Wapack Labs, a New Boston, New Hampshire, cyber intelligence service.

There’s something more than just human error going on because there would have been a lot of humans to be checks and balances, said Stutzman, a former information warfare specialist in the Navy.

Todd E. Humphreys, a professor at the University of Texas and expert in satellite navigation systems, echoed a similar concern: Statistically, it looks very suspicious, doesn’t it?

Understandably the U.S. Navy are trying to keep a lid on any theories of cyber attack. However, in a tweet on MondayChief of Naval Operations, Adm. John Richardson, did not rule out a cyber attackas a potential cause of the fatal collision:

No indications right now but review will consider all possibilities

Rickards:Is Someone Attacking the U.S. Navy?

Rickards is always worth reading and he wrote this in theDaily Reckoning:

Some recent tragic incidents involving the US Navy have captured my attention.

There have been two deadly incidents within the past two months, in which Navy warships have collided with merchant vessels.

In the first incident, seven sailors were killed in June when the destroyer USS Fitzgerald collided with a cargo ship near Yokosuka, Japan.

Then this month the USS John McCain, a ship just like the Fitzgerald, collided with an oil tanker near the Strait of Malacca, close to Singapore. Sadly, 10 sailors are lost.

What’s going on here?

Is the Navy losing situational awareness? Are the crews