Subs belong in Groton

News of a Navy plan to move a portion of its submarine fleet from Groton to the western Pacific over the next decade should serve as a reminder that officials here must adopt the same vigilant attitude as the military when it comes to developing long-term strategies.

In short, you can't let your guard down.

During an interview Tuesday at the Naval Submarine Base, Adm. Jonathan W. Greenert, the chief of naval operations, projected that by 2020 the number of attack submarines assigned here will shrink from 16 to 12. Subs also will be moved west from the naval station in Norfolk, Va., in response to the military's overall shift in focus to Asia.

While Adm. Greenert's comments in no way suggest the Groton base's future is jeopardized - if anything, they reinforce the Navy's commitment to maintaining it along with bases in Norfolk and Kings Bay, Ga. - Connecticut authorities who have for years had to fend off Base Realignment and Closure efforts should be wary.

Town, state and base officials must continue to make improvements to the base, underscoring its importance not just to the region's economy but to the nation's security.

And all eyes must remain on the horizon to ensure Groton remains Submarine Capital of the World.

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