Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
USS Cole bombing
On October 12, 2000, USS Cole was in the port of Aden, Yemen for a routine fuel stop. Cole completed mooring operations at 09:30. Refueling started at 10:30. At 11:18 local time (08:18 UTC), a small craft approached the port side of the destroyer, and an explosion occurred causing a 40 by 40 foot (12 m by 12 m) gash in the port side of the Cole. Damage control efforts to manage flooding in the ship's engineering spaces were reported successful that evening. Divers inspected the hull and said the keel was not damaged.
USS Donald Cook and USS Hawes made best speed to arrive in the vicinity of Aden that afternoon providing repair and logistical support. Catawba , Camden, Anchorage, Duluth, and Tarawa arrived in Aden some days later, providing watch relief crews, harbor security, damage control equipment, billeting, and food service for the crew of Cole.
Seventeen sailors were killed and 39 others were injured in the blast which blew a hole in the port side of the destroyer. The injured sailors were taken to the United States Army's Landstuhl Regional Medical Center near Ramstein, Germany, and later to the U.S.
One of the 2000 millennium attack plots, the attempted bombing of USS The Sullivans, is widely seen as a trial run of the Cole bombing. This attack failed when the bombers' boat, overloaded with explosives, began to sink.
Consequences and after-effects
President Bill Clinton declared, "If, as it now appears, this was an act of terrorism, it was a despicable and cowardly act. We will find out who was responsible and hold them accountable". Clinton's usage of the word terrorism in that above quotation does not fit some definitions of the word terrorism because they require the target to be civilian exclusively. Regardless, no known direct military action was taken by the United States in response to the Cole bombing.
On January 19, 2001, The Navy completed and released its Judge Advocate General Manual (JAGMAN) investigation of the incident, concluding that Cole's commanding officer "acted reasonably in adjusting his force protection posture based on his assessment of the situation that presented itself" when Cole arrived in Aden to refuel. The JAGMAN also concluded that "the commanding officer of Cole did not have the specific intelligence, focused training, appropriate equipment or on-scene security support to effectively prevent or deter such a determined, preplanned assault on his ship" and recommended significant changes in Navy procedures.
On September 29, 2004, a Yemeni judge sentenced Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri and Jamal al-Badawi to death for their roles in the bombing. Al-Nashiri, believed to be the operation's mastermind, is currently being held by the U.S. at an undisclosed location. Al-Badawi, in Yemeni custody, denounced the verdict as "an American one." Four others were sentenced to prison terms of five to 10 years for their involvement, including one Yemeni who had videotaped the attack.
- Hull Maintenance Technician 2nd Class Kenneth Eugene Clodfelter, 21, of Mechanicsville, Virginia.
- Electronics Technician Chief Petty Officer Richard Costelow, 35, of Morrisville, Pennsylvania.
- Mess Management Specialist Seaman Lakeina Monique Francis, 19, of Woodleaf, North Carolina
- Information Systems Technician Seaman Timothy Lee Gauna, 21, of Rice, Texas
- Signalman Seaman Cherone Louis Gunn, 22, of Rex, Georgia
- Seaman James Rodrick McDaniels, 19, of Norfolk, Virginia
- Engineman 2nd Class Marc Ian Nieto, 24, of Fond du Lac, Wisconsin
- Electronics Warfare Technician 2nd Class Ronald Scott Owens, 24, of Vero Beach, Florida
- Seaman Lakiba Nicole Palmer, 22, of San Diego, California
- Engineman Fireman Joshua Langdon Parlett, 19, of Churchville, Maryland
- Fireman Patrick Howard Roy, 19, of Cornwall on Hudson, New York
- Electronics Warfare Technician 1st Class Kevin Shawn Rux, 30, of Portland, North Dakota
- Mess Management Specialist 3rd Class Ronchester Manangan Santiago, 22, Kingsville, Texas
- Operations Specialist 2nd Class Timothy Lamont Saunders, 32, of Ringgold, Virginia
- Fireman Gary Graham Swenchonis Jr., 26, Rockport, Texas
- Ensign Andrew Triplett, 31, of Macon, Mississippi
- Seaman Craig Bryan Wibberley, 19, of Williamsport, Maryland
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