ARG flagship Kearsarge, San Antonio-class amphibious transport dock ship USS Arlington (LPD 24), and Whidbey Island-class dock touchdown ship USS Gunston Corridor (LSD 44) arrived in Helsinki, Finland; Stockholm, Sweden; and Tallinn, Estonia, respectively, demonstrating the US and like-minded nations’ dedication to preserving safety and stability within the area.
The ARG-MEU aggregated within the Baltic Sea for the primary time on this deployment after passing by the Danish Straits, August 3. Whereas working within the Baltic Sea, the Sailors and Marines of the ARG-MEU can have a number of alternatives to foster relationships constructed on a typical basis of shared values, experiences, and imaginative and prescient for the area and for Europe.
“We’re grateful to be welcomed again to the Baltic to additional our partnership with our shut pals and allies,” mentioned Brig. Gen Andrew Priddy, commanding basic, Job Drive 61 Naval Amphibious Forces Europe/2nd Marine Division (TF 61/2). “We stay up for our future coaching and cooperation.”
For Kearsarge and Gunston Corridor, this marks a return to the Baltic Sea. Each ships participated within the Estonian-led train Siil 22 in Might and the annual joint, multinational train Baltic Operations (BALTOPS), the premier maritime-focused train within the Baltic area, in June. The ships additionally carried out earlier port visits in Helsinki, Stockholm, and Tallinn earlier this 12 months.
That is Arlington’s first time within the Baltic Sea since deploying from the U.S. East Coast. Since arriving in theater, Arlington’s Sailors and Marines have participated in a big selection of bi-lateral and multinational workout routines all through Europe and Africa, together with Northern Viking with Iceland, Greece’s train Alexander the Nice, EFES in Turkey, and African Lion off the coast of Northern Africa.
Arlington’s operations within the Baltic Sea underscore the geographic variety of the ship’s deployment and spotlight the improved functionality the ARG-MEU group brings to the general space of operations.
“That is the primary alternative that the Marines on the Arlington have to go to the Baltic,” mentioned Lt. Col. Christopher Myette, govt officer of the Twenty second MEU embarked aboard Arlington. “We stay up for having fun with a few of the hospitality that our fellow Marines on the opposite ships loved beforehand within the deployment. Sweden is a important accomplice, and it is a nice alternative for the Marines to expertise a few of its wealthy tradition earlier than we resume coaching with our many allies and companions within the Baltic area.”
All three ships lately accomplished near-simultaneous mid-voyage deployment restore (MDVR) and upkeep intervals in Brest, France; Rijeka, Croatia; and Copenhagen and Kalundborg, Denmark. These upkeep intervals allowed the ships to perform obligatory and preventative repairs to proceed their missions within the area whereas concurrently strengthening relationships with host nations.
“Taking time to conduct MDVRs to keep up and restore security and mission-essential tools aboard the ARG ships was essential to make sure a profitable continuation of the ARG’s deployment all through Sixth Fleet,” Capt. Paige Sherman, U.S. Sixth Fleet’s Director Logistics (N41), mentioned. “The deliberate upkeep and logistics efforts in these places have been difficult, however throughout the board, the pursuit to constantly work and develop relationships with our companions expands the readiness posture of our ships and strengthens interoperability with our Allies.”
Whereas pierside, the ARG-MEU Sailors and Marines can have the chance to discover the port cities of varied allied and accomplice nations, gaining a deeper historic and cultural appreciation of the nations within the area whereas fostering interpersonal relationships and having fun with some relaxation and reset time.
The Kearsarge ARG and embarked Twenty second MEU are below the command and management of Job Drive 61/2. The ARG consists of Wasp-class amphibious assault ship USS Kearsarge (LHD 3); San-Antonio class amphibious transport dock ship USS Arlington (LPD 24); and Whidbey Island-class dock touchdown ship USS Gunston Corridor (LDS 44). Embarked instructions with the Kearsarge ARG embody Amphibious Squadron SIX, Twenty second MEU, Fleet Surgical Crew 2, Fleet Surgical Crew 4, Tactical Air Management Squadron 22, Helicopter Sea Fight Squadron 22, Helicopter Sea Fight Squadron 28, Assault Craft Unit 2, Assault Craft Unit 4, Naval Seaside Group 2, and Seaside Grasp Unit 2.
For over 80 years, U.S. Naval Forces Europe-U.S. Naval Forces Africa (NAVEUR-NAVAF) has cast strategic relationships with our Allies and Companions, leveraging a basis of shared values to protect safety and stability.
Headquartered in Naples, Italy, NAVEUR-NAVAF operates U.S. naval forces within the U.S. European Command (USEUCOM) and U.S. Africa Command (USAFRICOM) areas of duty. U.S. Sixth Fleet is completely assigned to NAVEUR-NAVAF, and employs maritime forces by the complete spectrum of joint and naval operations.