- The Washington Times - Tuesday, March 12, 2013

The U.S. Navy has sent its most technologically advanced ship, the highly navigable 388-foot USS Freedom, to Singapore — even as the military is facing sequester cuts.

The ship is not the largest, but it does allow for easy navigation among Southeast Asia’s islands and shallow waters, The Associated Press reports. And it’s now stationed in a critical area: The waterways are crucial to the transport of trillions of dollars in oil and other products, AP says.

The mission comes despite forced military cuts — underscoring the importance for patrols in the area.

“We hold our commitment to them, to our area, our theater, so highly that this deployment has not been affected,” said Rear Adm. Hugh Wetherald, the U.S. Pacific Fleet deputy chief of staff for plans, polices and requirements, AP reports. “The Navy and the Pacific Fleet are still on watch.”

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