Navy fires captain of aircraft carrier over leak of letter to leadership

first_imgUS Navy(NEW YORK) — The captain of the aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt has been relieved of duty for exercising “poor judgment” in not safeguarding information in a letter to Navy leadership that was leaked to a newspaper. The letter requested that most of the ship’s crew of 5,000 be taken off the ship to contain the spread of novel coronavirus.Thomas Modly, the acting secretary of the Navy, said Thursday at a hastily called Pentagon briefing that Capt. Brett Crozier was being relieved for a loss of confidence and poor judgment.“I lost confidence in his ability to lead that warship as it continues to fight through this virus, get the crew healthy, so that it can continue to meet its national security requirements,” said Modly.In a letter to Navy commanders that was leaked to the San Francisco Chronicle. Crozier used blunt language to senior commanders urging that most of his crew of 5,000 be sailors be removed from the ship to slow down the spread of the coronavirus.“Sailors do not need to die,” he wrote in the letter that led to a firestorm of controversy.Modly made clear he did not fault Crozier for wanting to protect his crew, but took issue with how he did not express his concerns with his immediate supervisor, the rear admiral aboard the ship who was in charge of the Roosevelt carrier strike group.“He’s being relieved because to me that demonstrated extremely poor judgment in the middle of a crisis,” said Modly. “Because of what it’s done, it’s has created a firestorm. It’s created doubts about the ship’s ability to go to sea if it needs to. It’s created doubt among the families, about the health of their sailors.”Modly said he had no information to indicate that Crozier personally leaked the letter, but noted that in emailing it to 20-30 people he provided an opportunity for the letter to be leaked.“He did not safeguard that information and to keep it from being sent anywhere,” said Modly.“That was a completely unnecessary thing to do in the midst of a crisis,” said Modly who added that he expects more from a commander responsible for an aircraft carrier.“Granted, they don’t train for this, but we expect more from our COs (commanding officers) than what they trained for, we expect them to exercise good judgment that does not put their crews in jeopardy,” he said.In the letter, Crozier asked Navy leaders to accelerate the removal of most of his 5,000 sailors from the carrier to facilities on Guam to stop the spread of the coronavirus aboard the ship. As of Thursday, 114 sailors aboard the carrier have tested positive for the virus said a U.S. official.Crozier also asked that his sailors be moved from communal facilities ashore to individual housing to conform with coronavirus safety guidelines established by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).According to Modly, by the time Crozier had written his letter the Navy already had plans to move 2,700 sailors off the carrier and was looking for hotel rooms so they could quarantine and isolate properly. The Navy said Wednesday that it would achieve that goal by the end of the week.On Wednesday Modly had said that Crozier would not be disciplined for having expressed his concerns through the chain of command.However, he left the door open for discipline if it was proven that Crozier had leaked the letter himself.Modly said the incident with Crozier’s letter was “frustrating because of what it does.”“It undermines our efforts — and the chain of command’s efforts — to address this problem and creates a panic and creates the perception that the Navy is not on the job, the government’s not on the job, and it’s just not true,” he said.Modly said he had not felt any political pressure in making his decision and said he had never consulted the White House on the matter. He did say that he had told Defense Secretary Mark Esper on Wednesday that he was leaning towards relieving Crozier and that Esper said he would support the move.Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

Press release: FCO Minister for Asia and the Pacific arrives in China for five day visit

first_imgFurther information Email [email protected] For journalists Follow Foreign Office Minister Mark Field @MarkFieldUK As my second official visit to China, I am honoured to have the opportunity to visit different parts of the country to experience the breadth and depth of cooperation between our 2 countries. China is an essential partner for the UK in many areas, from science and innovation to trade and investment. I look forward to seeing more partnerships develop as we strengthen our links in the new chapter of our ‘Golden Era’. Follow the Foreign Office on Instagram, YouTube and LinkedIn FCO Minister for Asia and the Pacific, is today (22 July) starting a 5-day visit to China. The visit will include visiting Beijing, Chongqing, Chengdu, Nanjing and Shanghai, in a programme reflecting the breadth and depth of business, investment and science and innovation links between the UK and China.During his second official trip to China as Minister of State for Asia and the Pacific, Minister Field will call on senior Chinese government officials. Meetings are set to include China’s Vice Minister Guo Yezhou in Beijing, Executive Vice Mayor Wu Cunrong in Chongqing, Mayor Luo Qiang in Chengdu and Vice Governor Guo Yuanqiang of Jiangsu Province.In Beijing, the Minister will discuss bilateral issues and UK-China co-operation on foreign policy issues of shared concern, ahead of the UK-China Strategic Dialogue on 30 July. He will also tour the Centre of Excellence for Plant and Microbial Science (CEPAMS), a leading example of the benefits achieved from bringing together UK and Chinese expertise in scientific research to tackle the global challenges of food security and sustainable health care.The Minister’s visit to Chongqing coincides with the celebrations on the 35th anniversary of Chevening, the UK government’s global flagship scholarship programme, in China. In Chengdu, he will visit a joint UK-China research project at the State Key Lab of Geo-hazard Prevention and Geo-environmental Protection. This project is funded by the UK-China Research and Innovation Partnership Fund, which brings together leading researchers and innovators from the UK and China.On the last leg of his visit, Minister Field will continue to Eastern China. In Nanjing, he will visit BGT Materials, a successful example of UK-China collaboration in commercialising scientific breakthroughs. In Shanghai, the Minister will visit the Shanghai Museum exhibition ‘Landscapes of the Mind: Masterpieces from Tate Britain’ and discuss opportunities with one of China’s leading museums about further future collaboration in the cultural and creative sectors.Speaking on arrival in China, UK Minister of State for Asia and the Pacific, the Rt Hon Mark Field MP said: Media enquiries Follow the Foreign Office on Twitter @foreignoffice and Facebooklast_img read more

48 Hours in Lexington, Virginia

first_imgCradled between the George Washington and Jefferson National Forests to the east and the Central Blue Ridge Mountains to the west, the city of Lexington, Va., hosts a wealth of outdoor adventure, culture, and history. With two campuses just a short walk from downtown, Virginia Military Institute and Washington and Lee University, the vibe in this otherwise quaint community is young and fresh.Bucolic farms litter the countryside just outside of town, indicative both of Lexington’s agricultural roots and its ever-growing farm to table movement. Mild weather year round makes Lexington the perfect destination for any season’s vacation. Hikers and equestrians, foodies and artists, come one, come all! There’s a little something for everyone in Lexington, Va.Downtown Lexington Virginia at NightCradled between the George Washington and Jefferson National Forests to the east and the Central Blue Ridge Mountains to the west, the city of Lexington, Va., hosts a wealth of outdoor adventure, culture, and history.Day 1Wake up those legs with a hike to Devil’s Marbleyard, a unique geological field of boulders and rocks that range in size from marbles to houses. Located in the James River Face Wilderness off of Milepost 71 on the Blue Ridge Parkway, this three-mile out-and-back can easily be completed in a few hours. If you’re looking for a longer hike, and a bigger challenge, return via the Gunter Ridge Trail for a total loop length of 8.3 miles.DevilsMarbleYardLocated in the James River Face Wilderness off of Milepost 71 on the Blue Ridge Parkway, this three-mile out-and-back can easily be completed in a few hours.After your hike, take a tour of one of the area’s greatest natural wonders—the Caverns at Natural Bridge. Guided tours (adults: $18, kids: $12) run every half hour for 45 minutes each and take visitors 34 stories belowground to an otherworldly landscape of stalactites and stalagmites, of course, but also dripstone, flowstone, draperies, and pools.M245_BGuided tours (adults: $18, kids: $12) run every half hour for 45 minutes each and take visitors 34 stories belowground to an otherworldly landscape.Make sure to see the Natural Bridge itself, once called “The Bridge of God” by the native Monacan Indian tribe. You can see its holy glory via the Cedar Creek Trail, a one-mile trail that winds past its namesake, Cedar Creek, and ends at the 30-foot Lace Falls.Day 2Short of outdoor adventures and Civil War-age history, Lexington is also home to the nationally renowned Virginia Horse Center, a testament to the area’s rich equestrian scene. On your second day in Rockbridge County, you’ll experience those picturesque farms that passed by your window the day before from a different perspective, the way early settlers would have seen the countryside—between the ears of a horse.NaturalBridge_LexingtonRockbridgeTourism_hiresMake sure to see the Natural Bridge itself, once called “The Bridge of God” by the native Monacan Indian tribe.Tish Vest is the local go-to for guided trail rides and lessons. Her property, located in Natural Bridge, is not only a textbook example of Virginia’s beauty, but is also uniquely joined with the Bodhi Path Buddhist Center. Don’t be surprised when you come upon a Buddhist temple during your trail ride.If you prefer to hop in a saddle of a different sort, check out Shenandoah Rides and Rentals for all of your touring, shuttle, and bike rental needs. Owners Dave & Tasha Walsh can suggest routes, help with shuttle, and even assist you with long-distance ride logistics. For a casual, yet scenic, afternoon ride, ask the Walsh’s about Goshen Pass—they’ll set you up with a ride that’s mostly downhill and overlooks the Maury River.FoodVegetarians and vegans will find their new haven at Kind Roots, a small, family-owned restaurant located in the Lexington YMCA. It’s like a deli, with a unique and local twist that’s winning the hearts of customers one sweet potato burger at a time.Part grocer, part restaurant, the Blue Phoenix Café & Market is a hit no matter your dietary preferences. Vegetarians will delight with classic menu items like the TLT (that’s tofu, lettuce, and tomato) and the Grilled Cheese with sundried tomato aioli, while even the most carnivorous of carnivores will find their savory weekly specials something to Yelp about…in a good way.For a taste of the Shenandoah Valley itself, The Red Hen is a must. As Lexington’s first farm-to-table restaurant, The Red Hen has well-established relations with the area’s best farmers and caters its menu each day to the bounties of the valley. When in doubt, go for the risotto. This is fine dining at its best.Savor the charm of southern eats and atmosphere at the Southern Inn Restaurant. Opened in 1932, this restaurant still maintains much of the same design and infrastructure from its early years. You can get standard southern goodies like fried pickles and fried pimento cheese here, and they are to die for, but don’t take our word for it. Get some yourself.southern innOpened in 1932,The Southern Inn still maintains much of the same design and infrastructure from its early years.Libations & NightlifeIn the summertime, the Lime Kiln Theater is the place to be. The outdoor venue is breathtaking, the line-up is always killer (last year’s events featured Ben Sollee, Steep Canyon Rangers, Chatham County Line, Mandolin Orange, and The Infamous Stringdusters, just to name a few), and the vibe is downright groovy. It’s the perfect way to spend a summer evening.Craft beer fans will want to stop in at Blue Lab Brewing Company, which opened in 2010. While Blue Lab offers five standard brews year round, the adventurous palette will want to explore beers like the Green Chile Ale and the Coffee Chocolate Stout.How would you like to spend your next Sunday under the sun, lounging on a deck with an uncorked bottle of wine beside you and music in your ear? Who wouldn’t!? At Rockbridge Vineyard’s Uncorked and Unplugged series, that’s exactly what goes down two Sundays of every month, April thru October. Bring the family, the lawn chair, the picnic basket, the dog, the hula-hoop, and your dancing shoes for this pickin’ good time. Like a cherry on top, their wine is pretty fabulous, too.11794178_1595696370692882_4908742565182401316_oBrew Ridge Taps has 18 beers on tap and 199 bottles of beer on the wall.Brew Ridge Taps. 18 beers on tap. 199 bottles of beer on the wall. Appetizers, wafflewiches (that’s a sandwich, with a waffle instead of bread), open mic nights, chalkboard tables. Need we say more?Looking for a place to hunker down for the evening with a craft cocktail in hand and a fire crackling in the hearth? Look no further than TAPS, located in The Georges. TAPS also serves locally inspired soups, salads, and sandwiches, making it a perfect place to host events.Love Devils Backbone brews but can’t make it out to Nelson County? Check out the brewery’s Outpost in Lexington, where 45,000 barrels of beer were brewed in the Outpost’s first three years of operation.LodgingFor a boutique inn experience, check out The Georges on Main Street. One part history, one part luxury, and one part convenience, this place is sure to make you feel like royalty.Submerge yourself in the farmland surrounding Lexington at Applewood Inn and Llama Trekking. That’s right—llama trekking. Aside from the environmentally friendly, cozy, bed and breakfast style accommodations here, you can also sign up for a guided llama trek around the property.TheGeorges_home1For a boutique inn experience, check out The Georges on Main Street.A stay at the House Mountain Inn is like going back in time. The rustic log cabin is situated against a backdrop of picturesque mountains on the 1,000-acre Allegheny Mountain Preserve. The back deck overlooks the painting-perfect landscape, and with a two-story fireplace, gourmet meals, and a daily complimentary wine and cheese hour, we won’t blame you if you decide to stay forever.Find peace along the banks of the James River at Wilderness Canoe Company, where primitive, riverside camping complete is status quo for every site. Camping is reserved for those looking to paddle the river, so make the most of your stay by renting a canoe or inner tube. You can tackle the James yourself or hop on a guided tour ranging from flatwater to class III rapids, level pending.Upcoming EventsApril 2: 10th Annual Rockbridge Bull & Oyster FestAugust 12 & 26, September 9 & 23: Music in the Garden SeriesSeptember 5: Labor Day FestivalSeptember 9-10: Mountain Music & Dance FestivalSeptember 10: Rockbridge Beer & Wine FestivalSeptember 22-24: Nothin’ Fancy Bluegrass Festival[divider]Check out More from our 48 Hours Series below[/divider]last_img read more

Gabon to host 2017 Africa Cup of Nations

first_imgGabon has been awarded hosting rights for the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations. The tournament was initially set to take place in Libya, but security concerns have forced CAF to award hosting rights elsewhere.Gabon, which co-hosted the Africa Cup of Nations tournament in 2012, was chosen again Wednesday in a vote by the Confederation of African Football’s (CAF) executive committee in Cairo.Gabon was selected over rival bids from Algeria and Ghana. Equatorial Guinea, which shared the African Cup with Gabon in 2012, hosted on its own this year. Neighbor Gabon will now also get the chance to do that in two years.last_img read more