At times during the past couple of years, U.S. carrier battle groups have been forward deployed for nine- and ten-month periods. Now the Navy plans to “lock in” eight-month deployments. The plan is intended to return “predictability” to deployments—which it is hoped will improve personnel retention. 1
Reaching the eight-month deployment goal will not be easy. Commander, Fleet Forces Command, Admiral William Gortney, speaking at the Navy League’s symposium at National Harbor, Maryland, in April, declared, “Eight months is right on the ragged edge of what’s acceptable,” and added that several factors were working against it.