Military


MSO 422 Aggressive

These ocean going minesweepers were designed, with wooden hulls, to counter North Korean mining during the Korean War. They were capable of sweeping for moored and bottom contact, magnetic and acoustic mines. During the 1987-88 Persian Gulf escort missions, active and reserve MSO's were dispatched to the Gulf. Both ships and crews performed extremely well in very demanding conditions, clearing hundreds of mines from the international waterway.

During the Cold War the US mine warfare concept was designed around a European war scenario which relied on North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) allies to participate substantially in mine warfare operations. The Navy's MCM capabilities in the Persian Gulf included the surface mine countermeasures (SMCM) capabilities of three 30-year-old USS Aggressive and USS Acme (MSO 422 and 508) class minesweepers. These minesweepers used the AN/SQQ-14 MCM sonar to detect bottom and moored mines and mechanical minesweeping gear to cut mine cables. The Dutch heavy lift ship SUPER SERVANT 3 carried the USS IMPERVIOUS (MSO-449), the USS ADROIT (MSO-509) and USS LEADER (MSO-490) to Norfolk from the Persian Gulf region, where the minesweepers were deployed for 14 months in support of Operation Desert Shield and Operation Desert Storm. The ocean minesweepers were moored to the submerged deck of the heavy lift ship in preparation for transportation to the Middle East.

All units of this class have been stricken, with some to be disposed of by the Security Assistance Program (SAP) for cash sale and others to be sold by the Defense Reutilization and Marketing Service (DRMS) for scrapping. Some units were stricken and sold, but the Contractor defaulted and the ship was repossessed by the Navy to be resold.



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