What order did the Republican administration give to Crozier that Crozier deliberately disobeyed? I guess it is stupid and naive to look out for the health and safety of those under you. Kinda like what the current head of the Republican party is doing........
He showed a lack of judgement in 'publishing' his memorandum to so many people, where it was very likely the information would be public.
Command of an aircraft carrier is unlike commanding any other ship. He is running an airport. He has no ability to order any aircraft to do anything. Combat oriented - his sole responsibility is to try to defend the ship from attack - mainly close in point defense. He does not even determine the course of the ship, were it goes. Things like the port visit in Danang or the decision to move the ship to Guam - he provides input, but he does not make the final decision.
With his 3,200 man crew, the CO runs a hotel for almost 2,500 people. Providing food, berthing, sanitation, laundry (laundry on a carrier is a HUGE job), additional services such as barber shops, some small stores for a few items, entertainment, etc. He provides hanger space, storage for supplies - everything from spare tires for aircraft to weapons and fuel. One of his jobs is provide AARF, and ship's damage control. Modern carriers are much more a threat from aircraft accidents than the enemy.
The Carrier Air Wing Commander - usually a Captain (O-6) like the Commanding Officer of the carrier - is responsible for coordinating the squadrons and implement the battle plan if the carrier is an attack position, providing a CAP (Combat Air Patrol to defend the carrier). He is the one who says when flight operations begin and end, coordinated with the ship's CO. He keeps the peace and coordinates mission assignments between the four or five strike fighter squadrons, the AWACS squadron, the electronic warfare squadron, the logistic squadron, and helicopter squadrons.
Most of those squadrons are commanded by Navy Commanders (O-5). They are responsible for making sure their aircraft are ready to fly when needed, pilots trained and briefed, and handle the training of their people, support and maintenance as well flight crews.
An Admiral is the Carrier Strike Group Commander, I believe for the TR it is Rear Admiral Stephen T Koehler. He had overall mission authority for the group which includes the carrier, one or two cruisers and a destroyer squadron, which can be as little as two or as many as four destroyers or similar ships.
He has a lot of responsibility for defending the carrier with the other ships. Carriers are really helpless beasts. Their defensive capabilities are limited to short range what is called point defense. The cruisers are primarily a forward air defense component, the destroyers are a submarine defense component. All have a responsibility to try hard not to shoot down friendly aircraft also trying to defend the carrier.
It is a complicated demanding multi-faceted role to be Commanding Officer of an aircraft carrier. It takes a varied background and a lot of proven excellence to be considered for command of a carrier. Captain Crozier started his Navy carrier as a helicopter pilot flying from destroyers and frigates. Then he became an FA-18 pilot, flying strike missions off the USS Nimitz during 2003. He attended the Naval War College for his masters degree. After a tour as an FA-18 squadron CO, he went to a NATO command in Italy.
He completed a required year plus training in Naval Nuclear Power before a tour as XO of the USS Ronald Reagan, followed by a tour as Commanding Officer of the USS Blue Ridge - which is the at sea host/ home of the three star Commander of Seventh Fleet - and the oldest warship in the US Navy - she will cross 50 years of service in November.
A Commanding Officer has to have a 'broad' carrier because it is a very demanding job, and requires balancing a lot of different requirements, many of which he has no direct ability to command others to accomplish.
During operations, the CO and the Air Wing Commander are in close, less than hourly contact and coordination. In planning, it is the CO, the Air Wing Commander working with and under the Strike Group Commander.