READER’S VIEWS: Coast Guard needs recognition too

Posted: Tuesday, May 28, 2013 12:00 am

Updated: 6:34 am, Tue May 28, 2013.

READER’S VIEWS: Coast Guard needs recognition too

E. Alan Anstine

The Daily Progress

Something I have a pet peeve about is when I see something on the commercial market about the military I always see the Army, Navy, Marine Corps, and Air Force listed.  Very rarely is the fifth service mentioned.  The United States Coast Guard (USCG) is a branch of the United States Armed Forces. The five uniformed services that make up the Armed Forces are defined in 10 U.S.C. § 101(a)(4): The term “armed forces” means the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard.

The Coast Guard is further defined by 14 U.S.C. § 1: “The Coast Guard as established 28 January 1915, shall be a military service and a branch of the armed forces of the United States at all times. The Coast Guard shall be a service in the Department of Homeland Security, except when operating as a service in the Navy.”

Founded as the Revenue Cutter Service on 4 August 1790, it is the United States’ oldest continuous seagoing service and from 1790 to 1798 the Revenue Cutter Service (The U.S. Coast Guard’s name prior to 1915) was the only naval force of the early United States.

I am proud of my service in the U.S. Coast Guard and the Coast Guard has had many people serve the United States honorably. It is and has been one of the Armed Forces of the United States.

During the War of 1812, the Revenue Marine took several British prizes.  Revenue cutters patrolled the coast of Florida during the Seminole War of 1836—the only “Indian War” in which naval forces took part.

The Coast Guard took part in the first Union victories of the Civil War: 

Thirteen revenue cutters served with the Navy during the Spanish-American War.

During World War I, the Coast Guard was responsible for policing the massive shipping traffic that passed through American seaports and serving as convoy escorts.

World War II presented the Coast Guard with rigorous challenges.  The Beach Patrol waged a tedious war against German espionage and saboteurs, and the Port Security program absorbed 20 percent of the service’s personnel.

Coast Guard cutters and patrol boats were renamed convoy escorts and submarine chasers.  Primarily as landing craft operators, Coast Guardsmen took part in most of the amphibious campaigns in the Pacific, the Mediterranean and in the D-Day landing. During the invasion of Normandy, 60 Coast Guard patrol boats pulled some 150 survivors from the English Channel.

One of the Coast Guard’s most vexing wartime assignments was to patrol the waters around Greenland.  The Greenland Patrol, a handful of cutters, tugs, and smaller vessels made the first American naval capture of the war by seizing a radio-equipped German trawler in September 1941.

Several ships in Coast Guard service added significant footnotes to naval history.  In June 1944 the first landing of a helicopter on board a ship, and the Sea Cloud, a weather ship, in 1943 became the first racially integrated vessel in U.S. naval service.

During World War II, twenty-eight Coast Guard and Coast Guard–manned vessels were sunk. The service’s wartime deaths totaled 1,030, including the Coast Guard’s Medal of Honor recipient. Coast Guard cutters and manned naval vessels sank 11 enemy submarines; a Coast Guard aircraft sank a 12th. Coast Guardsmen rescued more than 4,000 survivors from sinking vessels.

In 1965 during the Vietnam War, seventeen Coast Guard patrol craft helped inaugurate Operation Market Time.

The Coast Guard has served in the Middle East Theater as well.

The USCG has served in all the armed actions the United States has engaged in and deserves to be treated as the EQUAL it is to the other Armed Forces.

The service members of the USCG have worked hard for the protection of the people of the United States and so many citizens don’t even know who or what the USCG is or does. They don’t even acknowledge that it is one of the Armed Forces of the United States. THAT IS AN INSULT to those who have served. 

I am proud to have served in the U. S. Coast Guard. 

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Tuesday, May 28, 2013 12:00 am.

Updated: 6:34 am.

Article source: http://www.dailyprogress.com/starexponent/opinion/reader-s-views-coast-guard-needs-recognition-too/article_f85ba63c-c781-11e2-b4b4-001a4bcf6878.html

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