Guantánamo

Former USS Nimitz commander to take over prison operations at Guantánamo

Then-Navy Capt. John C. Ring, commanding officer of the aircraft carrier USS Nimitz, speaking to sailors on Nov. 25, 2015, at the Naval Base Kitsap-Bremerton base gym.
Then-Navy Capt. John C. Ring, commanding officer of the aircraft carrier USS Nimitz, speaking to sailors on Nov. 25, 2015, at the Naval Base Kitsap-Bremerton base gym. U.S. NAVY

The Pentagon announced Wednesday that it is sending a Navy aviator and former commanding officer of the USS Nimitz to run prison operations here as the 18th commander of the about 1,700 troops and civilians holding 41 captives of the war on terror.

It was not known precisely when Rear Adm. John Clinton Ring would take over from Rear Adm. Edward Cashman. Commanders of the Joint Task Force have in recent years served single year tours of duty at this remote base, and Cashman took over in April. But commanders more typically switch out in the summer.

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Then-Navy Capt. John C. Ring was the commander of the aircraft carrier USS Nimitz from July 8, 2014, to Jan. 12, 2017. He was promoted to a one-star admiral on Jan. 30, 2018.

The Pentagon announcement said Ring, a San Diego native, is currently an executive assistant in the Navy’s Air Warfare directorate for Patrol and Reconnaissance. He has expertise in airborne early warning systems.

He was commanding officer of the carrier Nimitz from July 8, 2014, to Jan. 12, 2017.

Ring trained to fly in Pensacola and became a Naval Flight Officer in 1990, according to his official biography. He was assigned to another aircraft carrier, the USS John C. Stennis, at the time of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks that caused creation of Camp X-Ray here, and then subsequently more permanent prison structures.

The Senate confirmed Ring’s promotion to one-star admiral on a voice vote on Jan. 30.

The Pentagon has yet to disclose Cashman’s next assignment.

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