On 9/11, 2001, the Navy stood at 316 ships. By 2008, after one of the great military buildups in American history, we were at 278 ships and had 49,000 fewer sailors.
We've got SEAL teams in the field that are very close to net zero in terms of energy and water, so they can stay out almost indefinitely without being resupplied.
When I do all-hands calls - and I do a lot of all-hands calls - and I look out across 50 people, or 5,000 people, I see United States sailors. I do not see male sailors, or female sailors, and I do not think anybody else does, either.
Here are the choices I don't want to make: between paying additional fuel costs and flying and steaming less; between paying additional fuel costs and building fewer ships and planes.
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