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US Navy Pacific commander misses promotion, to retire after deadly collisions

US Navy Pacific commander misses promotion, to retire after deadly collisions”

It has been speculated that given the current situation in the Pacific region, Adm. Harry Harris may be asked to continue beyond the May 27, 2018, end of his current three-year term as Commander, U.S. Pacific Command.

US Pacific Fleet commander Admiral Scott Swift announced Monday that he was not being tapped to replace Admiral Harry Harris, who is retiring next year. Whoever the Pentagon chooses to replace Harris will be taking over at a time when North Korea poses a rising threat and China is flexing its military muscle.

The top Navy commander in the Pacific unexpectedly announced he will retire after being passed over to lead U.S. Pacific Command (PACOM).

'In keeping with tradition and in loyalty to the Navy, I have submitted my request to retire, ' Swift, 60, said.

He did not give the desired retirement date, nor did he mention the recent naval collisions in the Pacific.

Like Harris, Swift is a proponent of freedom of navigation in the South China Sea and a strong critic of Beijing's island building there. The command oversees USA forces in a geographic area from California to India.

It's common for Pacific Fleet commanders to be nominated as PACOM head when the previous commander retires.

Admiral Swift will be the most senior U.S. naval officer to step down since the collisions which killed seventeen American sailors.

McCain and an oil tanker collided near Singapore last month, leaving 10 USA sailors dead.

The first crash, involving the USS Fitzgerald, occurred in the early morning of June 17 in an accident-prone area known for congestion within Japanese territorial waters.

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