"Operation Restore Hope 1992" Personal Page by Travel2write
General Characteristics: Awarded: December 10, 1962
Keel laid: June 15, 1964
Launched: July 31, 1965
Commissioned: August 6, 1966
Decommissioned: September 15, 1995
Builder: Ingalls Shipbuilding, West Bank, Pascagoula, Miss.
Propulsion system: Two boilers, one geared steam turbines, one shaft, 22,000 total shaft horsepower
Length: 603, 65 feet (184 meters)
Beam: 104 feet (31.7 meters)
Draft: 25,9 feet (7.9 meters)
Aircraft elevators: two
Displacement: approx. 19,500 tons full load
Speed: 23 knots
Aircraft: 20 UH-46D Sea Knight Helicopters, 10 MH-53E Sea Stallion Helicopters, 3 UH-1 Helicopters, 3 AH-1 Helicopters but the actual mix depends upon mission
Armament: two Phalanx CIWS, two Mk-25 Sea Sparrow Missile Launchers
Crew: 80 officers, 638 enlisted, 1,750 Marine Detachment
While assigned to a MCM force sweeping toward the shore of Faylaka Island during the Gulf War on January 17, USS TRIPOLI and the other ships of the MCM force were targeted by Iraqi Silkworm anti-ship missile fire control radars. The MCM force moved out of the missiles' range and after coalition forces destroyed the missile site, the ships returned to the area on January 18, at 0240 local time.
At 0345, after operating for 11 hours in an undetected Iraqi minefield, the USS TRIPOLI hit a moored Iraqi contact mine creating an explosion and ripping a 16 by 20 foot hole below the water line.
To support the United Nation’s relief effort in Somalia, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Cohn Powell, directed CENTCOM on 2 December 1992 to secure transportation facilities in Mogadishu, Somalia. The operation was designated RESTORE HOPE. An amphibious squadron, consisting of USS Tripoli, Juneau, and Rushmore, with a Marine Expeditionary Unit, a SEAL platoon, and a Special Boat Unit (SBU) detachment, arrived off the coast of Somalia shortly thereafter. To mount an amphibious landing to secure the Mogadishu airport, the Marines needed up-to-date charts for the beaches which did not exist.
When Somali "Warlords" terrorized the city of Mogadishu, Tripoli was ordered to respond. On December 3, 1993, Tripoli arrived off the coast of Somalia and conducted the first landing of forces in support of Operation Restore Hope. During the night landing, TRIPOLI'S Marines were able to secure the airport and seaports in Mogadishu.
Operation RESTORE HOPE gave way to UN Operations Somalia in May 1993, after having brought an end to starvation and making the lives of Somalis somewhat safer. But the overall success of U.S. Special Operations Forces in Somalia will always be overshadowed by the events of 3-4 October 1993, when U.S. troops found themselves in the fiercest urban firefight since the Vietnam War.
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