Passed over on the New Jersey |

Passed over on the New Jersey

Referring to recent reports that President Bush may have delayed the return home of the USS Abraham Lincoln after the end of Gulf War II so as to indulge in a photo opportunity, I remember a similar event having occurred in Japan after the end of World War II.

I was aboard USS Moctobi (ATF 105) and we were in Tokyo Bay at the signing of the Japanese surrender on board the battleship USS Missouri. We had helped put another battleship, the USS New Jersey, alongside, so that the command of the fleet could be transferred to the Missouri.

The Missouri had but recently arrived in the area to relieve the New Jersey, who had been in the task force for a long time and had a very good record. The gang on the New Jersey were slated to return home, but the orders went to the Missouri to return home instead.

The guys we talked to said that she was going back to the States to be used for political public relations because Mr. Truman was a Missourian, had recently become President and it would be politically useful to hype the USS Missouri.

The USS New Jersey people felt they had been cheated of their just due by a bunch of stateside politicos.

Richard B. Veit


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