Admiral Thad Allen: This Senseless Government Shutdown Is Harming Coast Guard Families

U.S. Coast Guard Photo

By Admiral Thad Allen, U.S. Coast Guard (Retired) – Today, with the government shutdown in its third week, it is beyond troubling that Coast Guard men and women are being unnecessarily subjected to financial hardship while enduring the operational, mission-related circumstances that are accepted as part of their compact with their country.

These are the Americans who flew over the rooftops of New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina, saving thousands from flooded homes. These are the men and women who were the first ashore in Haiti after the earthquake, rendering aid, treating wounds, and delivering children in unsanitary, primitive conditions. These are the heroes who mobilized to respond to the worst marine environmental disaster in the nation’s history. These are the selfless service men and women who provided medical support to other Department of Homeland Security agencies to screen incoming airline passengers during the Ebola crisis and today are supporting the Department on the southwest border. These are the people who stand search-and-rescue watch and patrol our coastal waters and the Arabian Gulf. And these are the Americans who have accompanied the remains of my friends and colleagues to their final resting place in Arlington Cemetery, rendering honors and exercising the manners of our profession. Continue reading on the U.S. Naval Institute website…

Admiral Allen served as the 23rd Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard.

This article appeared in the January 2019 issue of Proceedings Magazine.