USNI News Fleet and Marine Tracker: May 16, 2022

These are the approximate positions of the U.S. Navy’s deployed carrier strike groups and amphibious ready groups throughout the world as of May 16, 2022, based on Navy and public data. In cases where a CSG or ARG is conducting disaggregated operations, the chart reflects the location of the capital ship. Total U.S. Navy Battle […]

These are the approximate positions of the U.S. Navy’s deployed carrier strike groups and amphibious ready groups throughout the world as of May 16, 2022, based on Navy and public data. In cases where a CSG or ARG is conducting disaggregated operations, the chart reflects the location of the capital ship.

Total U.S. Navy Battle Force:

298

Ships Underway

Deployed Ships Underway Non-deployed Ships Underway Total Ships Underway
74 17 91

Ships Deployed by Fleet

Fleet Forces 3rd Fleet 4th Fleet 5th Fleet 6th Fleet 7th Fleet Total
0 4 2 12 28 70 116

In Japan

Sailors assigned to the forward-deployed amphibious assault ship USS America (LHA-6), stand in formation during a dress white uniform inspection on the ship’s flight deck on May 4, 2022. US Navy Photo

Ships of the America Amphibious Ready Group (ARG), which include USS America (LHA-6), USS Green Bay (LPD-20) and USS Ashland (LSD-48), are in port in Sasebo, Japan.

In the Philippine Sea

Aviation Machinist’s Mate Airman Christian Myers, from Las Vegas, conducts a performance test on an F/A-18 Super Hornet jet engine on the fantail aboard the aboard USS Ronald Reagan (CVN-76) on May 12, 2022. US Navy Photo

Aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan (CVN-76) is underway off the coast of Japan. The carrier recently completed its annual repair period in Yokosuka, Japan.

Carrier Strike Group 5

Aviation Boatswain’s Mate (Handling) Airman Logan Doherty, center, from Detroit, directs hose teams in response to a simulated fire during a mass casualty drill on flight deck of the U.S. Navy’s only forward-deployed aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan (CVN-76) on May 11, 2022. US Navy Photo

Aircraft carrier

USS Ronald Reagan (CVN-76), homeported in Yokosuka, Japan.

Carrier Air Wing 5

An MH-60S Knight Hawk, attached to the Golden Falcons of Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 12, prepares to land on the flight deck of the U.S. Navy’s only forward-deployed aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan (CVN-76) May 8, 2022. US Navy Photo

Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 5, based at Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni, Japan, is embarked aboard Ronald Reagan and includes a total of nine squadrons and detachments:

  • The “Royal Maces” of VFA-27 – Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) – from Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni, Japan.
  • The “Diamondbacks” of VFA-102 from MCAS Iwakuni.
  • The “Eagles” of VFA-115 from MCAS Iwakuni.
  • The “Dambusters” of VFA-195 from MCAS Iwakuni.
  • The “Shadowhawks” of VAQ-141 – Electronic Attack Squadron (VAQ) – from MCAS Iwakuni.
  • The “Tiger Tails” of VAW-125 – Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron (VAW) – from MCAS Iwakuni.
  • The “Providers” of VRC-30 – Detachment 5 – Fleet Logistics Support Squadron (VRC) – from MCAS Iwakuni.
  • The “Golden Falcons” of HSC-12 – Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) – from Naval Facility Atsugi, Japan.
  • The “Saberhawks” of HSM-77 – Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) – from Naval Air Facility Atsugi.

U.S. 7th Fleet has not specified the surface ship escorts of the Reagan CSG.

Damage Controlman Fireman Timmy Sorm, from Milwaukee, checks the spray nozzles during a countermeasure wash-down on the flight deck aboard amphibious assault carrier USS Tripoli (LHA-7) on May 12, 2022. US Navy Photo

Amphibious assault ship USS Tripoli (LHA-7) is now in the Western Pacific.

Tripoli departed Naval Station San Diego, Calif., on an independent deployment to the Western Pacific on May 2. The 45,000-ton big-deck amphibious ship has 20 F-35B Lightning II Joint Strike Fighters embarked as part of evaluating the Marine Corps “lightning carrier” concept. The Navy and Marines are testing Tripoli adjunct capability to a carrier strike group, USNI News understands.

An F-35C Lightning II, assigned to the ‘Black Knights’ of Marine Fighter Attack Squadron (VMFA) 314, launches from the flight deck of the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72) on May 13, 2022. US Navy Photo

The Abraham Lincoln Carrier Strike Group (CSG) is in the Philippine Sea. The CSG deployed from San Diego, Calif., on Jan. 3, 2022.

According to a Navy release, “the CSG conducted deterrence missions in the Philippine Sea through demonstration of long range maritime strikes with Pacific Air Forces (PACAF) on May 9. Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 9 aircraft, integral to the Air Wing of the Future, including the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet, EA-18G Growler, E-2D Advanced Hawkeye and F-35C Lightning, launched from the flight deck of the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72) while underway in the Philippine Sea to conduct joint, dynamic deterrence missions with mission support and aerial refueling from Pacific Air Forces (PACAF) KC-135 Stratotankers.”

Carrier Strike Group 3

Aviation Electrician’s Mate Airman Chavrick Phillips, from Shelby, N.C., assigned to the “Tophatters” of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 14, stows away chains on the flight deck of the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72) on May 10, 2022. US Navy Photo

Carrier
USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72), homeported in San Diego, Calif.

Carrier Air Wing 9

An F/A-18E Super Hornet, assigned to the ‘Vigilantes’ of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 151, launches from the flight deck of the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72) on May 12, 2022. US Navy Photo

Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 9, based at Naval Air Station Lemoore, Calif., is embarked aboard Abraham Lincoln and includes a total of nine squadrons and detachments:

  • The “Black Aces” of VFA-41 Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) flying F/A-18Fs from Naval Air Station Lemoore.
  • The “Tophatters” of VFA-14 – F/A-18E – from Naval Air Station Lemoore.
  • The “Vigilantes” of VFA-151 – F/A-18E – from Naval Air Station Lemoore.
  • The “Black Knights” of VMFA 314 – Marine Strike Fighter Squadron (VMFA) flying F-35Cs from Marine Corps Air Station Miramar, Calif.
  • The “Wizards” of VAQ-133 – EA-18G – Electronic Attack Squadron (VAQ) – from Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, Wash.
  • The “Wallbangers” of VAW-117 – E-2D – Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron (VAW) – from Naval Air Station Point Mugu, Calif.
  • The “Titans” of VRM-30 – CMV-22B – Fleet Logistics Multi-Mission Squadron (VRM) – from Naval Air Station North Island, Calif.
  • The “Chargers” of HSC-14 – MH-60S – Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) – from Naval Air Station North Island.
  • The “Raptors” of HSM-71 – MH-60R – Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) – from Naval Air Station North Island.

Cruiser

  • USS Mobile Bay (CG-53), homeported at Naval Station San Diego, Calif.

Destroyer Squadron 21

Capt. Brian Ribota, commodore, Destroyer Squadron 21, crosses the flight deck of the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Spruance (DDG-111) on May 15, 2022. US Navy Photo

Destroyer Squadron 21 is based in San Diego, Calif., and is embarked on the carrier.

  • USS Fitzgerald (DDG-62), homeported at Naval Station San Diego.
  • USS Gridley (DDG- 101), homeported at Naval Station Everett, Wash.
  • USS Sampson (DDG-102), homeported at Naval Station Everett.
  • USS Spruance (DDG-111), homeported at Naval Station San Diego.

In the Mediterranean Sea

Aviation Machinist’s Mate Airman Yannick Ali, from Kinshasa, Congo, assigned to the “Dragonslayers” of Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 11, wipes down an MH-60S Sea Hawk helicopter on the flight deck of the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman (CVN-75) on May 9, 2022. US Navy Photo

The Harry S. Truman Carrier Strike Group (CSG) is underway in the western Mediterranean Sea. The CSG made a port call in Naples, Italy, on May 10. This is the first visit by a US Navy aircraft carrier to Naples in six years.

Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin has extended the deployment of the Harry S. Truman Carrier Strike Group, its escorts and Carrier Air Wing 1 as a hedge against Russian aggression in Europe. Truman has spent four months operating in the Mediterranean Sea since Austin ordered the strike group to remain on station in December as Russia massed forces along the Ukrainian border.

One defense official told USNI News the carrier could remain in the region until August before returning to its homeport in Norfolk, Va.

Carrier Strike Group 8

Carrier
USS Harry S. Truman (CVN-75), homeported in Norfolk, Va.

Carrier Air Wing 1

USS Harry S. Truman (CVN-75) pulls into Naples, Italy for a scheduled port visit, May 10, 2022. US Navy Photo

Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 1, based at Naval Air Station Oceana, Va., is embarked aboard Harry S. Truman and includes a total of nine squadrons and detachments:

  • The “Red Rippers” of VFA-11 Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) flying F/A-18Fs from Naval Air Station Oceana.
  • The “Fighting Checkmates” of VFA-211 – F/A-18E – from Naval Air Station Oceana.
  • The “Blue Blasters” of VFA-34 – F/A-18E – from Naval Air Station Oceana.
  • The “Sunliners” of VFA-81 – F/A-18E – from Naval Air Station Oceana.
  • The “Rooks” of VAQ-137 – EA-18G – Electronic Attack Squadron (VAQ) – from Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, Wash.
  • The “Seahawks” of VAW-126 – E-2D – Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron (VAW) – from Naval Air Station Norfolk, Va.
  • The “Rawhides” of VRC-40 – Detachment – C-2A – Fleet Logistics Support Squadron (VRC) – from Naval Air Station Norfolk.
  • The “Dragon Slayers” of HSC-11 – MH-60S – Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) – from Naval Air Station Norfolk.
  • The “Proud Warriors” of HSM-72 – MH-60R – Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) – from Naval Air Station Jacksonville, Fla.

Cruiser

  • USS San Jacinto (CG-56), homeported at Naval Station Norfolk.

Destroyer Squadron 28

An MH-60S Sea Knight helicopter, attached to the “Dragonslayers” of Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 11, delivers supplies to the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman (CVN-75) on May 6, 2022. US Navy Photo

Destroyer Squadron 28 is based in Norfolk and is embarked on the carrier.

  • USS Cole (DDG-67), homeported at Naval Station Norfolk.
  • USS Bainbridge (DDG- 96), homeported at Naval Station Norfolk.
  • USS Gravely (DDG-107), homeported at Naval Station Norfolk.
  • USS Jason Dunham (DDG-109), homeported at Naval Station Mayport, Fla.
  • USS Gonzalez (DDG-66), homeported at Naval Station Norfolk.
  • Royal Norwegian Navy frigate HNoMS Fridtjof Nansen (F310).

In the Baltic Sea

USS Kearsarge (LHD-3) transits through the Danish Straits and enters the Baltic Sea on May 13, 2022. US Navy Photo

The Kearsarge Amphibious Ready Group (ARG) and the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit are in the Baltic Sea. According to a Navy release, elements of the Kearsarge Amphibious Ready Group (ARG) and 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) held a training event with Norwegian Armed Forces on May 6.

“U.S. and Norwegian Armed Forces conducted cold weather training, multiple integrated live fire events, shock trauma platoon medical training, casualty evacuation drills, explosive ordnance training, and reconnaissance and marksmanship training,” reads a statement from U.S. 6th Fleet.
“The training began with the Wasp-class amphibious assault ship USS Kearsarge (LHD-3), flagship of the Kearsarge ARG and 22nd MEU, and Whidbey-Island class dock landing ship USS Gunston Hall (LSD-44) arriving in Tromsø and Narvik, respectively, to offload MEU elements and equipment. As part of the training event, Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron (VMM) 263 (Reinforced), assigned to the 22nd MEU, flew MV-22 Ospreys and AH-1 Cobra helicopters from Bardufoss Airfield training site, between Tromsø and Narvik, transporting equipment to and from Kearsarge during the on load of U.S. Marine Corps equipment.”

In addition to these major formations, not shown are others serving in submarines, individual surface ships, aircraft squadrons, SEALs, Special Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Forces, Seabees, Coast Guard cutters, EOD Mobile Units, and more serving throughout the globe.

Chinese Navy Ship Operating Off of Australia, Canberra Says

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia – A People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) intelligence ship is currently operating off the north-west shelf of Australia, the Australian Department of Defence said Friday. Australia’s DoD identified the vessel as China’s Dongdiao-class auxiliary intelligence ship Haiwangxing (792) and released imagery and video of the ship. A graphic of Haiwangxing’s voyage showed […]

People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) Intelligence Collection Vessel Haiwangxing operating off the north-west shelf of Australia. Australian Department of Defence Photo

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia – A People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) intelligence ship is currently operating off the north-west shelf of Australia, the Australian Department of Defence said Friday.

Australia’s DoD identified the vessel as China’s Dongdiao-class auxiliary intelligence ship Haiwangxing (792) and released imagery and video of the ship.

A graphic of Haiwangxing’s voyage showed the ship crossed Australia’s exclusive economic zone on the morning of May 6. On Sunday, it was approximately 70 nautical miles off the Harold E. Holt Communications Station, in Exmouth, Western Australia, while a Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) P-8 Poseidon maritime patrol aircraft monitored the ship.

Harold E. Holt Communications Station provides Very Low Frequency (VLF) communication transmission services for Australian, the United States and Australian-allied submarines.

The Chinese ship continued sailing southwards, and on Monday, it was 150 nautical miles off Exmouth while an RAAF P-8 tracked the intelligence ship. At the same time, HMAS Perth (FFH157) sailed out from port to monitor Haiwangxing but subsequently turned back because the Chinese ship changed its sailing direction on Tuesday morning. Haiwangxing turned north, sailing at a speed of six knots, 125 nautical miles from Exmouth. An RAAF P-8 and an Australian Border Force (ABF) Dash-8 maritime surveillance aircraft monitored the ship.

On Wednesday, Haiwangxing sailed northeast at 12 knots, with the ship approaching as close as 50 nautical miles of the of Harold E. Holt Communication Station, while an RAAF P-8, ABF Dash-8 and ABF patrol vessel ABFC Cape Sorell monitored. Haiwangxing was last spotted on Friday at 6 a.m. local time, approximately 250 nautical miles northwest of Broome Western Australia. An RAAF P-8 and a Maritime Border Command Dash-8 maritime surveillance aircraft monitored the ship on Thursday.

“Australia respects the right of all states to exercise freedom of navigation and overflight in international waters and airspace, just as we expect others to respect our right to do the same. Defence will continue to monitor the ship’s operation in our maritime approaches,” the Australian DoD said in the news release.

Movements of PLAN Dongdiao AGI-792 near Australia May 8-13 2022. Australian Department of Defence Photo

Meanwhile, over in the Philippine Sea, the PLAN’s CNS Liaoning (16) carrier strike group continues flight operations, according to the Japanese Ministry of Defense’s daily news releases this week. Liaoning; Type 055 destroyer CNS Nanchang (101); Type 052D destroyers CNS Xining (117), CNS Urumqi (118) and CNS Chengdu (120); Type 052C destroyer CNS Zhengzhou (151); Type 054A frigate CNS Xiangtan (531); and Type 901 fast combat support ship CNS Hulunhu (901) sailed into the Pacific Ocean via the Miyako Strait earlier this month.

The carrier and ships in its CSG performed a series of flight operations four days in a row this week. On 9 a.m. Sunday local time, Liaoning, the two Type 052D destroyers and Hulunhu were sighted 160 kilometers south of Ishigaki Island conducting flight operations with its embarked J-15 fighter aircraft and Z-18 helicopters from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m., according to news releases from Japan’s Joint Staff Office.

On Monday, the same ships were seen at 10 a.m. sailing 200 kilometers south of Ishigaki Island, performing flight operations from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. On Tuesday at 9 a.m., the group was sailing 310 kilometers south of Ishigaki Island, performing flight operations from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. On Wednesday at 9 a.m., Liaoning and two Type 052D destroyers were seen 160 kilometers south of Ishigaki Island, again performing flight operations from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) destroyer helicopter carrier JS Izumo (DDH-183) has tracked the Liaoning carrier strike group since May 2. Japanese destroyer JS Suzutsuki (DD-117) took over the task of tracking the Liaoning carrier group on Tuesday.

A People’s Liberation Army Navy J-15 carrier fighter takes off from Chinese aircraft carrier Liaoning (16) on May 7, 2022. Japanese MoD Photo

Japan Air Self-Defense Force (JASDF) fighter aircraft scrambled each day in response to the J-15 launches, according to the news release. In a Tuesday press conference, Japan Defense Minister Nobuo Kishi said the Chinese carried out a total of 100 sorties with its J-15s and Z-18s from Liaoning between May 3 and May 8.

While the activities of the PLAN carrier group were likely aimed at improving its aircraft carriers’ operational capabilities and its ability to carry out operations away from home, Kishi said Japan is concerned about the operations given that they were happening close to the Ryuku Islands and Taiwan. The Japanese Ministry of Defense will continue to monitor such activities, he said.

The Abraham Lincoln Carrier Strike Group is also operating in the Philippine Sea. Earlier this week, the CSG conducted deterrence missions in the Philippine Sea by performing long-range maritime strike with refueling help from Pacific Air Forces KC-135 Stratotankers, according to a U.S. 7th Fleet news release issued Friday.

An F/A-18E Super Hornet, assigned to the “Tophatters” of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 14, prepares to make an arrested landing on the flight deck of the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72) in the Philippine Sea on May 12, 2022. U.S. Navy Photo

USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72), destroyers USS Spruance (DDG-111) and USS Dewey (DDG-105), and cruiser USS Mobile Bay (CG-53) also performed multi-domain training to defend the carrier, according to the news release.

“Abraham Lincoln Carrier Strike Group is a powerful presence in the Philippine Sea that serves as a deterrent to aggressive or malign actors and supports a free and open Indo-Pacific,” Rear Adm. J.T. Anderson, the commander of carrier strike group Three, said in the release. “There is no better way to strengthen our combat-credible capabilities than to work alongside other joint forces to demonstrate our commitment to sovereignty, the region, and a rules-based international order.”

USNI News Fleet and Marine Tracker: May 9, 2022

These are the approximate positions of the U.S. Navy’s deployed carrier strike groups and amphibious ready groups throughout the world as of May 9, 2022, based on Navy and public data. In cases where a CSG or ARG is conducting disaggregated operations, the chart reflects the location of the capital ship. Total U.S. Navy Battle […]

USNI News Graphic

These are the approximate positions of the U.S. Navy’s deployed carrier strike groups and amphibious ready groups throughout the world as of May 9, 2022, based on Navy and public data. In cases where a CSG or ARG is conducting disaggregated operations, the chart reflects the location of the capital ship.

Total U.S. Navy Battle Force:

298

Ships Underway

Deployed Ships Underway Non-deployed Ships Underway Total Ships Underway
57 20 77

Ships Deployed by Fleet

Fleet Forces 3rd Fleet 4th Fleet 5th Fleet 6th Fleet 7th Fleet Total
1 3 2 12 28 69 115

In Japan

Sailors assigned to the amphibious assault ship USS America (LHA 6) attend to a simulated casualty on the pier during an integrated industrial firefighting drill with Commander, Naval Region Japan Fire & Emergency Services onboard U.S. Fleet Activities Sasebo, April 27, 2022. US Navy Photo

Ships of the America Amphibious Ready Group (ARG) – which includes USS America (LHA-6), USS Green Bay (LPD-20) and USS Ashland (LSD-48) – are in port in Sasebo, Japan.

In the Philippine Sea

Lt. Justin Blackston and Senior Chief Quartermaster Samantha Honaker aboard USS Ronald Reagan’s (CVN-76) navigation department, review their location in the ship’s pilot house on May 8, 2022. US Navy Photo

USS Ronald Reagan (CVN-76) is underway off the coast of Japan. The carrier has just completed its annual repair period in Yokosuka, Japan.

An F-35C Lightning II, assigned to the ‘Black Knights’ of Marine Fighter Attack Squadron (VMFA) 314, flies over the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72) on May 5, 2022. US Navy Photo

The Abraham Lincoln Carrier Strike Group (CSG) is in the Philippine Sea. The CSG deployed from San Diego, Calif., on Jan. 3, 2022.

Carrier Strike Group 3

Carrier
USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72), homeported in San Diego, Calif.

Carrier Air Wing 9

Aviation Boatswain’s Mate (Handling) 2nd Class Antionette Nelson, from Houston, directs an EA-18G Growler, assigned to the ‘Wizards’ of Electronic Attack Squadron (VAQ) 133, on the flight deck of the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72) on May 5, 2022. US Navy Photo

Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 9, based at Naval Air Station Lemoore, Calif., is embarked aboard Abraham Lincoln and includes a total of nine squadrons and detachments:

  • The “Black Aces” of VFA-41 Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) flying F/A-18Fs from Naval Air Station Lemoore.
  • The “Tophatters” of VFA-14 – F/A-18E – from Naval Air Station Lemoore.
  • The “Vigilantes” of VFA-151 – F/A-18E – from Naval Air Station Lemoore.
  • The “Black Knights” of VMFA 314 – Marine Strike Fighter Squadron (VMFA) flying F-35Cs from Marine Corps Air Station Miramar, Calif.
  • The “Wizards” of VAQ-133 – EA-18G – Electronic Attack Squadron (VAQ) – from Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, Wash.
  • The “Wallbangers” of VAW-117 – E-2D – Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron (VAW) – from Naval Air Station Point Mugu, Calif.
  • The “Titans” of VRM-30 – CMV-22B – Fleet Logistics Multi-Mission Squadron (VRM) – from Naval Air Station North Island, Calif.
  • The “Chargers” of HSC-14 – MH-60S – Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) – from Naval Air Station North Island.
  • The “Raptors” of HSM-71 – MH-60R – Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) – from Naval Air Station North Island.

Cruiser

Boatswain’s Mate 2nd Class Ashley Zappier, from Stony Point, N.J., makes an announcement on the ship’s internal microphone from the pilot house aboard the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Mobile Bay (CG-53) on May 4, 2022. US Navy Photo

 

  • USS Mobile Bay (CG-53), homeported at Naval Station San Diego, Calif.

Destroyer Squadron 21

Seaman Daniel Gregory, left, from Manassas, Va., instructs Seaman Joe Redfearn, from Chesterfield S. C., to relocate a mannequin in order to provide care during tactical combat casualty care (TCCC) training on the missile deck of Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Spruance (DDG-111) May 4, 2022. US Navy Photo

Destroyer Squadron 21 is based in San Diego, Calif., and is embarked on the carrier.

  • USS Fitzgerald (DDG-62), homeported at Naval Station San Diego.
  • USS Gridley (DDG- 101), homeported at Naval Station Everett, Wash.
  • USS Sampson (DDG-102), homeported at Naval Station Everett.
  • USS Spruance (DDG-111), homeported at Naval Station San Diego.

In Greece

A CH-53E Super Stallion helicopter, assigned to Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron (VMM) 263 (Rein.), flies over the San Antonio-class amphibious transport dock ship USS Arlington (LPD-24) on May 3, 2022. US Navy Photo

The third ship in the ARG, USS Arlington (LPD-24), arrived in Greece May 4 to participate in exercise Alexander the Great 2022. Alexander the Great 2022, “is an amphibious training event conducted in Volos, Greece and the Aegean Sea, May 2 to 31, 2022. ATG22 will exercise battalion-level command and control and company-level combined arms training to increase interoperability between the U.S. Navy-Marine Corps team and Hellenic Armed Forces. U.S. forces will be under the command and control of Task Force 61/2, with participating units include elements from the Kearsarge ARG, 22nd MEU and CTF 61/2’s Task Group 61/2.4 (Reconnaissance Counter-Reconnaissance Forces). The forces will train alongside Greece’s 32nd Hellenic Marine Brigade as well as the Hellenic Army’s Special Warfare Command,” U.S. 6th Fleet said.

In the Mediterranean Sea

From left to right, Command Master Chief Keith Wilkerson, command master chief, the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman (CVN-75), Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy Russell Smith, and U.S. Naval Forces Europe and Africa Fleet Master Chief Derrick Walters, take a selfie aboard the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman (CVN-75) on May 8, 2022. US Navy Photo

The Harry S. Truman Carrier Strike Group (CSG) is underway in the western Mediterranean Sea.

Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin has extended the deployment of the Harry S. Truman Carrier Strike Group, its escorts and Carrier Air Wing 1 as a hedge against Russian aggression in Europe. Truman has spent four months operating in the Mediterranean Sea since Austin ordered the strike group to remain on station in December as Russia massed forces along the Ukrainian border.

One defense official told USNI News the carrier could remain in the region until August before returning to its homeport in Norfolk, Va.

Carrier Strike Group 8

Damage Controlman Fireman Jocelyn Fisk, from Names, Idaho, removes corrosion from an aqueous film forming foam station aboard the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman (CVN-75) on May 6, 2022. US Navy Photo

Carrier
USS Harry S. Truman (CVN-75), homeported in Norfolk, Va.

Carrier Air Wing 1

Logistics Specialist 2nd Class Austin Stanton, from Alameda, California, observes Sailors on the flight deck of the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman (CVN-75) during a replenishment-at-sea, May 6, 2022. US Navy Photo

Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 1, based at Naval Air Station Oceana, Va., is embarked aboard Harry S. Truman and includes a total of nine squadrons and detachments:

  • The “Red Rippers” of VFA-11 Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) flying F/A-18Fs from Naval Air Station Oceana.
  • The “Fighting Checkmates” of VFA-211 – F/A-18E – from Naval Air Station Oceana.
  • The “Blue Blasters” of VFA-34 – F/A-18E – from Naval Air Station Oceana.
  • The “Sunliners” of VFA-81 – F/A-18E – from Naval Air Station Oceana.
  • The “Rooks” of VAQ-137 – EA-18G – Electronic Attack Squadron (VAQ) – from Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, Wash.
  • The “Seahawks” of VAW-126 – E-2D – Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron (VAW) – from Naval Air Station Norfolk, Va.
  • The “Rawhides” of VRC-40 – Detachment – C-2A – Fleet Logistics Support Squadron (VRC) – from Naval Air Station Norfolk.
  • The “Dragon Slayers” of HSC-11 – MH-60S – Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) – from Naval Air Station Norfolk.
  • The “Proud Warriors” of HSM-72 – MH-60R – Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) – from Naval Air Station Jacksonville, Fla.

Cruiser

  • USS San Jacinto (CG-56), homeported at Naval Station Norfolk.

Destroyer Squadron 28

Arleigh-Burke class guided-missile destroyer USS Jason Dunham (DDG-109), left, conducts a replenishment-at-sea with Supply-class fast combat support ship USNS Supply (T-AOE-6), in the Ionian Sea on May 6, 2022. US Navy Photo

Destroyer Squadron 28 is based in Norfolk and is embarked on the carrier.

  • USS Cole (DDG-67), homeported at Naval Station Norfolk.
  • USS Bainbridge (DDG- 96), homeported at Naval Station Norfolk.
  • USS Gravely (DDG-107), homeported at Naval Station Norfolk.
  • USS Jason Dunham (DDG-109), homeported at Naval Station Mayport, Fla.
  • USS Gonzalez (DDG-66), homeported at Naval Station Norfolk.
  • Royal Norwegian Navy frigate HNoMS Fridtjof Nansen (F310).

In the Norwegian Sea

Aviation Boatswain’s Mate (Fuel) 3rd Class Joaquin Bernardino updates flight deck control on aircraft fueling status aboard the Wasp-class amphibious assault ship USS Kearsarge (LHD-3) on April 28, 2022. US Navy Photo

The Kearsarge Amphibious Ready Group (ARG) and the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit remain in the Norwegian Sea. According to a Navy release, elements of the Kearsarge Amphibious Ready Group (ARG) and 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) held a training event with Norwegian Armed Forces on May 6.

“U.S. and Norwegian Armed Forces conducted cold weather training, multiple integrated live fire events, shock trauma platoon medical training, casualty evacuation drills, explosive ordnance training, and reconnaissance and marksmanship training,” reads a statement from U.S. 6th Fleet.
“The training began with the Wasp-class amphibious assault ship USS Kearsarge (LHD-3), flagship of the Kearsarge ARG and 22nd MEU, and Whidbey-Island class dock landing ship USS Gunston Hall (LSD-44) arriving in Tromsø and Narvik, respectively, to offload MEU elements and equipment. As part of the training event, Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron (VMM) 263 (Reinforced), assigned to the 22nd MEU, flew MV-22 Ospreys and AH-1 Cobra helicopters from Bardufoss Airfield training site, between Tromsø and Narvik, transporting equipment to and from Kearsarge during the on load of U.S. Marine Corps equipment.”

In the Eastern Pacific

Aviation Ordnanceman 2nd Class Jamire Harvey, from Fayetteville, North Carolina, mans the rails on the flight deck aboard amphibious assault carrier USS Tripoli (LHA-7) on May 2, 2022. US Navy Photo

Amphibious assault ship USS Tripoli (LHA-7) departed Naval Station San Diego, Calif., on an independent deployment to the Western Pacific on Monday, May 2. The 45,000-ton big-deck amphibious ship left San Diego to gather F-35B Lightning II Joint Strike Fighters that will include further testing of the Marine’s “lightning carrier” concept, a defense official confirmed to USNI News. The lightning carrier can load up to 20 of the short take-off, vertically landing F-35s as an adjunct capability to a carrier strike group. Tripoli’s departure comes just less than a month after the ship wrapped up a week of at-sea testing and training to prove the lightning carrier concept.

In addition to these major formations, not shown are others serving in submarines, individual surface ships, aircraft squadrons, SEALs, Special Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Forces, Seabees, Coast Guard cutters, EOD Mobile Units, and more serving throughout the globe.

Crew Blameless for 2021 MH-60S Crash Aboard USS Abraham Lincoln, New Investigation Finds

A failure in the system that keeps a helicopter rotor system stable was responsible for a fatal August 2021 fatal helicopter crash in which five sailors were killed, according to the results of an investigation released this week. The Navy released the command investigation into the August 31 MH-60S crash that occurred just after the […]

Sailors who died after an Aug. 31, 2021, MH-60S Knighthawk crash off the coast of California. USNI News Photo Illustration

A failure in the system that keeps a helicopter rotor system stable was responsible for a fatal August 2021 fatal helicopter crash in which five sailors were killed, according to the results of an investigation released this week.

The Navy released the command investigation into the August 31 MH-60S crash that occurred just after the helicopter touched down on the flight deck of USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72).

Five crew members of the “Eightballers” of HSC-8 were lost when the helicopter sank before search-and-rescue crews could find them. The Navy later declared them deceased: Pilot Lt. Bradley A. Foster, 29, of Oakhurst, Calif.; pilot Lt. Paul R. Fridley, 28, of Annandale, Va.; Naval Air Crewman (Helicopter) 2nd Class James P. Buriak, 31, of Salem, Va.; HM2 Class Sarah F. Burns, 31, of Severna Park, Md.; and HM3 Bailey J. Tucker, 21, of St. Louis, Mo.

According to the report, the helicopter touched down on the flight deck when it began to experience “divergent and uncommanded lateral and vertical vibrations,” according to the command investigation.

A vertical vibration, which was visible in the tail wheel, gave the first indication of a potential mishap, according to the report. The vibrations became so violent and loud inside the helicopter that the one sailor who survived told the command investigator that he could not hear any communication and it sounded like “loud knocking,” according to the investigations.

The vibrations caused the helicopter to rotate left, which was likely ground resonance. The tail then hit Abraham Lincoln’s right side gutter, and the nose started to rotate right, which the command investigator noted was likely caused by the pilot hitting the right pedal to stop the helicopter from rotating to the left.

The two pilots – Lt. Bradley Foster and Lt. Paul Fridley – attempted to pull the Power Control Levers, following emergency procedures. They were unsuccessful due the shaking, leading the command investigator to suggest that the level location in the upper center console “is not ideally located for quick securing of the engine in an emergency,” according to the investigation.

The MH-60S rotated left about 50 degrees then right 200 degrees. Its rotor blades then hit the flight deck, causing the blades to detach. One blade flew toward three other aircraft and two others went toward the landing area. It is not clear what happened to the fourth blade.

The helicopter rolled to the left, falling off the right side of Lincoln, tail first. The two pilots were restrained in their harnesses, while the other crew members – Buriak, Burns and Tucker – were restrained by gunner’s belts.

The helicopter likely landed in the water so that the left gunner’s window faced toward the surface of the water as it sank. The crew member who survived, on the helicopter as the rescue swimmer, was sitting by the left gunner’s window holding the two gunner’s handles at the time of the crash. This was likely what allowed him to swim out of the helicopter’s left window and survive, although injured, according to the report.

After the helicopter was recovered, the Navy determined that a damper hose – damper hoses are assigned to each blade to provide fluid to the damper system in the rotor – failed causing the crash.

Damper hoses are typically only replaced when they fail or when they show problems upon inspection, according to the report. The helicopter, which had been on two previous flights that day, passed its inspection.

The damper hose likely failed because of a flattening of its braids, which could not be seen during the inspection, according to the report. The investigation concluded that the crash was not the fault of any crew actions.

The crew and the helicopter were recovered in October from a depth of more than 5,000 feet, USNI News reported at the time.

USNI News Fleet and Marine Tracker: May 2, 2022

These are the approximate positions of the U.S. Navy’s deployed carrier strike groups and amphibious ready groups throughout the world as of May 2, 2022, based on Navy and public data. In cases where a CSG or ARG is conducting disaggregated operations, the chart reflects the location of the capital ship. Total U.S. Navy Battle […]

These are the approximate positions of the U.S. Navy’s deployed carrier strike groups and amphibious ready groups throughout the world as of May 2, 2022, based on Navy and public data. In cases where a CSG or ARG is conducting disaggregated operations, the chart reflects the location of the capital ship.

Total U.S. Navy Battle Force:

298

Ships Underway

Deployed Ships Underway Non-deployed Ships Underway Total Ships Underway
50 14 64

Ships Deployed by Fleet

Fleet Forces 3rd Fleet 4th Fleet 5th Fleet 6th Fleet 7th Fleet Total
2 0 2 13 26 70 113

In Japan

A tour group visits flight deck control onboard the forward-deployed aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan (CVN-76). Commander, Fleet Activities Yokosuka (CFAY) welcomed 15 followers of its Japanese Twitter page to a tour of CFAY and USS Ronald Reagan (CVN-76) on April 29, 2022. US Navy Photo

USS Ronald Reagan (CVN-76) is in port in Yokosuka, Japan, conducting its annual winter maintenance availability. The carrier began a four-month selected restricted availability in Yokosuka on Jan. 13, following a five-month deployment to the Middle East and the Pacific.

“Employees from Puget Sound Naval Shipyard & Intermediate Maintenance Facility and Norfolk Naval Shipyard, along with the ship’s force and contractors, are working together in Japan to complete maintenance on the aircraft carrier,” according to a Navy statement.

Ships of the America Amphibious Ready Group (ARG) – which includes USS America (LHA-6), USS Green Bay (LPD-20) and USS Ashland (LSD-48) – are in port in Sasebo, Japan.

In the Philippine Sea

Naval Aircrewman (Helicopter) 2nd Class Josh Haskell, from Beavertooth, N.C., guides an MH-60S Knight Hawk helicopter, assigned to the ‘Chargers’ of Helicopter Sea Combat squadron (HSC) 14, for a takeoff from the flight deck of the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72) on April 25, 2022. US Navy Photo

The Abraham Lincoln Carrier Strike Group (CSG) is in the Philippine Sea. The CSG deployed from San Diego, Calif., on Jan. 3, 2022.

Carrier Strike Group 3

USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72) transits the Philippine Sea on April 26, 2022. US Navy Photo

Carrier
USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72), homeported in San Diego, Calif.

Carrier Air Wing 9

Aviation Boatswain’s Mate (Equipment) Airman Caleb Stewart, right, from Batavia, Ohio, and Aviation Boatswain’s Mate (Equipment) 3rd Class Dominic Matias, from Austin, Texas, observe flight operations on the flight deck of the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72) on April 27, 2022. US Navy Photo

Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 9, based at Naval Air Station Lemoore, Calif., is embarked aboard Abraham Lincoln and includes a total of nine squadrons and detachments:

  • The “Black Aces” of VFA-41 Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) flying F/A-18Fs from Naval Air Station Lemoore.
  • The “Tophatters” of VFA-14 – F/A-18E – from Naval Air Station Lemoore.
  • The “Vigilantes” of VFA-151 – F/A-18E – from Naval Air Station Lemoore.
  • The “Black Knights” of VMFA 314 – Marine Strike Fighter Squadron (VMFA) flying F-35Cs from Marine Corps Air Station Miramar, Calif.
  • The “Wizards” of VAQ-133 – EA-18G – Electronic Attack Squadron (VAQ) – from Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, Wash.
  • The “Wallbangers” of VAW-117 – E-2D – Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron (VAW) – from Naval Air Station Point Mugu, Calif.
  • The “Titans” of VRM-30 – CMV-22B – Fleet Logistics Multi-Mission Squadron (VRM) – from Naval Air Station North Island, Calif.
  • The “Chargers” of HSC-14 – MH-60S – Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) – from Naval Air Station North Island.
  • The “Raptors” of HSM-71 – MH-60R – Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) – from Naval Air Station North Island.

Cruiser

Sailors stand watch in the pilot house aboard the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Mobile Bay (CG-53) on April 24, 2022. US Navy Photo

  • USS Mobile Bay (CG-53), homeported at Naval Station San Diego, Calif.

Destroyer Squadron 21

An MH-60R Sea Hawk Helicopter assigned to the ‘Scorpions’ of Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 49 prepares to take off aboard the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Sampson (DDG-102) on April 18, 2022. US Navy Photo

Destroyer Squadron 21 is based in San Diego, Calif., and is embarked on the carrier.

  • USS Fitzgerald (DDG-62), homeported at Naval Station San Diego.
  • USS Gridley (DDG- 101), homeported at Naval Station Everett, Wash.
  • USS Sampson (DDG-102), homeported at Naval Station Everett.
  • USS Spruance (DDG-111), homeported at Naval Station San Diego.

In the Mediterranean Sea

Vice Adm. Gene Black, commander, U.S. Sixth Fleet, visits Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman (CVN-75) on April 29, 2022. US Navy Photo

The Harry S. Truman Carrier Strike Group (CSG) is underway in the Mediterranean Sea. Last week, the CSG participated in a bilateral exercise with Turkish forces.

Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin has extended the deployment of the Harry S. Truman Carrier Strike Group, its escorts and Carrier Air Wing 1 as a hedge against Russian aggression in Europe. Truman has spent four months operating in the Mediterranean Sea since Austin ordered the strike group to remain on station in December as Russia massed forces along the Ukrainian border.

One defense official told USNI News the carrier could remain in the region until August before returning to its homeport in Norfolk, Va.

Carrier Strike Group 8

Hospital Corspman 2nd Class J.D. Byrum, from Maiden, North Carolina, runs quality control on a hematology analyzer aboard the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman (CVN-75) on April 28, 2022. US Navy Photo

Carrier
USS Harry S. Truman (CVN-75), homeported in Norfolk, Va.

Carrier Air Wing 1

Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 1, based at Naval Air Station Oceana, Va., is embarked aboard Harry S. Truman and includes a total of nine squadrons and detachments:

  • The “Red Rippers” of VFA-11 Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) flying F/A-18Fs from Naval Air Station Oceana.
  • The “Fighting Checkmates” of VFA-211 – F/A-18E – from Naval Air Station Oceana.
  • The “Blue Blasters” of VFA-34 – F/A-18E – from Naval Air Station Oceana.
  • The “Sunliners” of VFA-81 – F/A-18E – from Naval Air Station Oceana.
  • The “Rooks” of VAQ-137 – EA-18G – Electronic Attack Squadron (VAQ) – from Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, Wash.
  • The “Seahawks” of VAW-126 – E-2D – Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron (VAW) – from Naval Air Station Norfolk, Va.
  • The “Rawhides” of VRC-40 – Detachment – C-2A – Fleet Logistics Support Squadron (VRC) – from Naval Air Station Norfolk.
  • The “Dragon Slayers” of HSC-11 – MH-60S – Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) – from Naval Air Station Norfolk.
  • The “Proud Warriors” of HSM-72 – MH-60R – Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) – from Naval Air Station Jacksonville, Fla.

Cruiser

Sailors heave a line as Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS San Jacinto (CG-56) pulls into Porto di Marghera, Italy on April 23, 2022, for a port visit. US Navy Photo

 

  • USS San Jacinto (CG-56), homeported at Naval Station Norfolk.

Destroyer Squadron 28

Sailors, aboard Arleigh-Burke class guided-missile destroyer USS Jason Dunham (DDG-109) tension a phone-and-distance line connected to Henry J. Kaiser-class underway replenishment oiler USNS Laramie (T-AO-203) during a replenishment-at-sea, in the Central Mediterranean Sea, April 26, 2022. US Navy Photo

Destroyer Squadron 28 is based in Norfolk and is embarked on the carrier.

  • USS Cole (DDG-67), homeported at Naval Station Norfolk.
  • USS Bainbridge (DDG- 96), homeported at Naval Station Norfolk.
  • USS Gravely (DDG-107), homeported at Naval Station Norfolk.
  • USS Jason Dunham (DDG-109), homeported at Naval Station Mayport, Fla.
  • USS Gonzalez (DDG-66), homeported at Naval Station Norfolk.
  • Royal Norwegian Navy frigate HNoMS Fridtjof Nansen (F310).

In the Norwegian Sea

The Whidbey Island-class dock landing ship USS Gunston Hall (LSD-44) sails through a snow storm, April 26, 2022. US Navy Photo

The Kearsarge Amphibious Ready Group (ARG) and the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit remain in the Norwegian Sea. The ARG ships composition is USS Kearsarge (LHD-3), USS Arlington (LPD-24) and USS Gunston Hall (LSD-44).

The 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit is based out of North Carolina and includes the command element; the aviation combat element, Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron, 263 (Reinforced); the ground combat element, Battalion Landing Team 2/6; and the logistics combat element, Combat Logistics Battalion 26.

U.S. Marines with Echo Company, Battalion Landing Team 2/6, 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit, utilize a laser rangefinder during a transit through the Strait of Gibraltar aboard San Antonio-class amphibious transport dock ship USS Arlington (LPD-24), April 26, 2022. US Marine Corps Photo

In addition to the MEU itself, embarked commands with the Kearsarge ARG include Amphibious Squadron Six, Fleet Surgical Team 2, Tactical Air Control Squadron 22, Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 28, Assault Craft Unit 2, Assault Craft Unit 4, Naval Beach Group 2 and Beach Master Unit 2.

It’s unclear if the Kearsarge ARG will be part of the ongoing NATO presence operations as the Russian invasion of Ukraine continues. Since the late February invasion, the U.S. and NATO have massed naval power in the Baltic and Mediterranean seas.

In the Eastern Pacific

Sailors direct flight operations from primary-flight aboard Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson (CVN-70), April 25, 2022. US Navy Photo

USS Carl Vinson (CVN-70) is underway in the Southern California Operating Areas. The Carl Vinson Carrier Strike Group returned to San Diego, marking the end of an eight-month deployment to the U.S. 3rd and U.S. 7th Fleet areas of operation, on Feb. 14.

In the Western Atlantic

Retail Specialist 1st Class Bernard Ford and Aviation Machinist’s Mate 1st Class Richard Boone, assigned to the amphibious assault ship USS Bataan (LHD-5), heave a line during a replenishment at sea with the dry cargo and ammunition ship USNS William McLean (T-AKE-12) on April 30, 2022. US Navy Photo

USS Bataan (LHD-5) is underway in the Virginia Capes. Bataan completed a 16-month maintenance availability on Jan. 19 at NASSCO-Norfolk.

In addition to these major formations, not shown are others serving in submarines, individual surface ships, aircraft squadrons, SEALs, Special Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Forces, Seabees, Coast Guard cutters, EOD Mobile Units, and more serving throughout the globe.

USNI News Fleet and Marine Tracker: April 25, 2022

These are the approximate positions of the U.S. Navy’s deployed carrier strike groups and amphibious ready groups throughout the world as of April 25, 2022, based on Navy and public data. In cases where a CSG or ARG is conducting disaggregated operations, the chart reflects the location of the capital ship. Total U.S. Navy Battle […]

USNI News Graphic

These are the approximate positions of the U.S. Navy’s deployed carrier strike groups and amphibious ready groups throughout the world as of April 25, 2022, based on Navy and public data. In cases where a CSG or ARG is conducting disaggregated operations, the chart reflects the location of the capital ship.

Total U.S. Navy Battle Force:

298

Ships Underway

Deployed Ships Underway Non-deployed Ships Underway Total Ships Underway
54 16 70

Ships Deployed by Fleet

Fleet Forces 3rd Fleet 4th Fleet 5th Fleet 6th Fleet 7th Fleet Total
0 0 3 13 26 70 112

In Japan

Capt. Douglas Graber, commanding officer of USS New Orleans (LPD-18), gives Adm. Ryo Sakai, chief of staff, Japan Maritime Self Defense Force, a tour of New Orleans on April 21, 2022. US Navy Photo

USS Ronald Reagan (CVN-76) is in port in Yokosuka, Japan, conducting its annual winter maintenance availability. The carrier began a four-month selected restricted availability in Yokosuka on Jan. 13, following a five-month deployment to the Middle East and the Pacific.

“Employees from Puget Sound Naval Shipyard & Intermediate Maintenance Facility and Norfolk Naval Shipyard, along with the ship’s force and contractors, are working together in Japan to complete maintenance on the aircraft carrier,” according to a Navy statement.

Ships of the America Amphibious Ready Group (ARG) – which includes USS America (LHA-6), USS Green Bay (LPD-20) and USS Ashland (LSD-48) – are in port in Sasebo, Japan.

In the Philippine Sea

A CMV-22B Osprey, carrying the U.S. ambassador to Japan, Hon. Rahm Emanuel, Japan Minister of Foreign Affairs, Hayashi Yoshima, Commander, U.S. 7th Fleet, Vice Adm. Karl Thomas, Commander, Navy Region Japan/Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Japan Rear Adm. Carl Lahti, lands on Naval Air Facility (NAF) Atsugi following an official visit, to the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72) on April 23, 2022. US Navy Photo

The Abraham Lincoln Carrier Strike Group (CSG) is in the Philippine Sea. U.S. fighters put on a display of naval air power Saturday over USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72) in the Philippine Sea for two VIPs and U.S. 7th Fleet commander Vice Adm. Karl Thomas.
CAN WE CALL THEM DISTINGUISHED VISITORS?

“U.S. Ambassador to Japan Rahm Emanuel and Japanese Foreign Minister Yoshimasa Hayashi watched from the aircraft carrier’s flight deck as F-18 Super Hornets and F-35C Lightning II stealth fighters roared through maneuvers about 140 miles off the coast,” according to Stars and Stripes.
Thomas stressed the command has to worry about “China’s growing military capability and its willingness to flex its muscles in the South and East China seas; and North Korea’s steady stream of missile tests taking flight this year.”

“We’re all watching what’s happening in Europe, with Russian aggression. We’re watching China gain confidence and expand their exercises. Certainly, North Korea has launched more missiles recently,” Thomas said during a news conference aboard the carrier. “The key is deterrence, and I think you’re standing onboard a large piece of that deterrence.”

The Abraham Lincoln carrier strike group on Tuesday trained alongside the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force in the Philippine Sea and East China Sea.

Carrier Strike Group 3

Carrier
USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72), homeported in San Diego, Calif.

Carrier Air Wing 9

Aviation Boatswain’s Mate (Equipment) 1st Class Michael Morrissey, from San Diego, directs an E-2D Advanced Hawkeye, assigned to the ‘Wallbangers’ of Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron (VAW) 117, on the flight deck of the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72) during a U.S.-Japan bilateral exercise on April 14, 2022. US Navy Photo

Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 9, based at Naval Air Station Lemoore, Calif., is embarked aboard Abraham Lincoln and includes a total of nine squadrons and detachments:

  • The “Black Aces” of VFA-41 Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) flying F/A-18Fs from Naval Air Station Lemoore.
  • The “Tophatters” of VFA-14 – F/A-18E – from Naval Air Station Lemoore.
  • The “Vigilantes” of VFA-151 – F/A-18E – from Naval Air Station Lemoore.
  • The “Black Knights” of VMFA 314 – Marine Strike Fighter Squadron (VMFA) flying F-35Cs from Marine Corps Air Station Miramar, Calif.
  • The “Wizards” of VAQ-133 – EA-18G – Electronic Attack Squadron (VAQ) – from Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, Wash.
  • The “Wallbangers” of VAW-117 – E-2D – Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron (VAW) – from Naval Air Station Point Mugu, Calif.
  • The “Titans” of VRM-30 – CMV-22B – Fleet Logistics Multi-Mission Squadron (VRM) – from Naval Air Station North Island, Calif.
  • The “Chargers” of HSC-14 – MH-60S – Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) – from Naval Air Station North Island.
  • The “Raptors” of HSM-71 – MH-60R – Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) – from Naval Air Station North Island.

Cruiser

  • USS Mobile Bay (CG-53), homeported at Naval Station San Diego, Calif.

Destroyer Squadron 21

Boatswain’s Mate Seaman Apprentice Yerson Zamora, from Houston, stands port life buoy watch on the fantail aboard the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72) as Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) Kongō-class guided-missile destroyer JS Kongō (DDG-173) sails in formation during a U.S.-Japan bilateral exercise on April 12, 2022. US Navy Photo

Destroyer Squadron 21 is based in San Diego, Calif., and is embarked on the carrier.

  • USS Fitzgerald (DDG-62), homeported at Naval Station San Diego.
  • USS Gridley (DDG- 101), homeported at Naval Station Everett, Wash.
  • USS Sampson (DDG-102), homeported at Naval Station Everett.
  • USS Spruance (DDG-111), homeported at Naval Station San Diego.

In Trieste, Italy

USS Harry S. Truman (CVN-75) pulls into Trieste, Italy on April 23, 2022. US Navy Photo

Elements of the Harry S. Truman Carrier Strike Group are in port in Italy.

“The Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman (CVN-75) and Norwegian Fridtjof Nansen-class frigate HNoMS Fridtjof Nansen (F310) arrived in Trieste, Italy, while the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS San Jacinto (CG-56) arrived in Porto di Marghera, for scheduled port visits, April 23, 2022,” the Navy said last week.

Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin has extended the deployment of the Harry S. Truman Carrier Strike Group, its escorts and Carrier Air Wing 1 as a hedge against Russian aggression in Europe. Truman has spent four months operating in the Mediterranean Sea since Austin ordered the strike group to remain on station in December as Russia massed forces along the Ukrainian border.

One defense official told USNI News the carrier could remain in the region until August before returning to its homeport in Norfolk, Va.

Carrier Strike Group 8

Carrier
USS Harry S. Truman (CVN-75), homeported in Norfolk, Va.

Carrier Air Wing 1

Sailors watch as the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman (CVN-75) pulls into Trieste, Italy on April 23, 2022. US Navy Photo

Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 1, based at Naval Air Station Oceana, Va., is embarked aboard Harry S. Truman and includes a total of nine squadrons and detachments:

  • The “Red Rippers” of VFA-11 Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) flying F/A-18Fs from Naval Air Station Oceana.
  • The “Fighting Checkmates” of VFA-211 – F/A-18E – from Naval Air Station Oceana.
  • The “Blue Blasters” of VFA-34 – F/A-18E – from Naval Air Station Oceana.
  • The “Sunliners” of VFA-81 – F/A-18E – from Naval Air Station Oceana.
  • The “Rooks” of VAQ-137 – EA-18G – Electronic Attack Squadron (VAQ) – from Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, Wash.
  • The “Seahawks” of VAW-126 – E-2D – Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron (VAW) – from Naval Air Station Norfolk, Va.
  • The “Rawhides” of VRC-40 – Detachment – C-2A – Fleet Logistics Support Squadron (VRC) – from Naval Air Station Norfolk.
  • The “Dragon Slayers” of HSC-11 – MH-60S – Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) – from Naval Air Station Norfolk.
  • The “Proud Warriors” of HSM-72 – MH-60R – Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) – from Naval Air Station Jacksonville, Fla.

Cruiser

USS San Jacinto (CG-56) is moored in Porto di Marghera, Italy on April 23, 2022. US Navy Photo

 

  • USS San Jacinto (CG-56), homeported at Naval Station Norfolk.

Destroyer Squadron 28

Cmdr. Iris Fivelstad, commanding officer of the Norwegian Navy Fridtjof Nansen-class frigate HNoMS Fridtjof Nansen (F-310), hosts Capt. Patrick Hourigan, commander, Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 1 for a meal aboard Nansen on April 4, 2022. US Navy Photo

Destroyer Squadron 28 is based in Norfolk and is embarked on the carrier.

  • USS Cole (DDG-67), homeported at Naval Station Norfolk.
  • USS Bainbridge (DDG- 96), homeported at Naval Station Norfolk.
  • USS Gravely (DDG-107), homeported at Naval Station Norfolk.
  • USS Jason Dunham (DDG-109), homeported at Naval Station Mayport, Fla.
  • USS Gonzalez (DDG-66), homeported at Naval Station Norfolk.
  • Royal Norwegian Navy frigate HNoMS Fridtjof Nansen (F310).

In the Norwegian Sea

U.S. Marine Corps Maj. Carl Beirel, a pilot with the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit, flies a UH-1Y Huey during flight operations in Norway, April 19, 2022. US Marine Corps Photo

The Kearsarge Amphibious Ready Group (ARG) and the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit completed Northern Viking 2022, earlier this month. The ARG remains in the Norwegian Sea. The ARG ships composition is USS Kearsarge (LHD-3), USS Arlington (LPD-24) and USS Gunston Hall (LSD-44).

The 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit is based out of North Carolina and includes the command element; the aviation combat element, Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron, 263 (Reinforced); the ground combat element, Battalion Landing Team 2/6; and the logistics combat element, Combat Logistics Battalion 26.

In addition to the MEU itself, embarked commands with the Kearsarge ARG include Amphibious Squadron Six, Fleet Surgical Team 2, Tactical Air Control Squadron 22, Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 28, Assault Craft Unit 2, Assault Craft Unit 4, Naval Beach Group 2 and Beach Master Unit 2.

It’s unclear if the Kearsarge ARG will be part of the ongoing NATO presence operations as the Russian invasion of Ukraine continues. Since the late February invasion, the U.S. and NATO have massed naval power in the Baltic and Mediterranean seas.

In the Eastern Pacific

Sailors participate in a fall protection course in the hangar bay of Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson (CVN-70) on April 8, 2022. US Navy Photo

USS Carl Vinson (CVN-70) is underway in the Southern California Operating Areas. The Carl Vinson Carrier Strike Group returned to San Diego, marking the end of an eight-month deployment to the U.S. 3rd and U.S. 7th Fleet areas of operation, on Feb. 14.

In the Western Atlantic

Aviation Boatswains’ Mate (Fuel) 1st class Gerald Labtis, assigned to the amphibious assault ship USS Bataan (LHD-5), pumps fuel during a replenishment-at-sea with the dry cargo and ammunition ship USNS William McLean (T-AKE-12) April 22, 2022. US Navy Photo

USS Bataan (LHD-5) is underway in the Virginia Capes. Bataan completed a 16-month maintenance availability on Jan. 19 at NASSCO-Norfolk.

In addition to these major formations, not shown are others serving in submarines, individual surface ships, aircraft squadrons, SEALs, Special Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Forces, Seabees, Coast Guard cutters, EOD Mobile Units, and more serving throughout the globe.

Russian, Chinese Ships Steaming Near Japan as Carrier Lincoln Operates Near Korea

KULA LUMPUR – Three Russian warships and three Russian civilian vessels transited the Tsushima Straits on Tuesday, while a Chinese surveillance ship sailed from the East China Sea into the Pacific Ocean on Wednesday, according to releases posted on Wednesday by the Joint Staff Office of the Japan Self-Defense Force. The three Russian Navy ships […]

An E-2D Advanced Hawkeye landing aboard USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72). US Navy Photo

KULA LUMPUR – Three Russian warships and three Russian civilian vessels transited the Tsushima Straits on Tuesday, while a Chinese surveillance ship sailed from the East China Sea into the Pacific Ocean on Wednesday, according to releases posted on Wednesday by the Joint Staff Office of the Japan Self-Defense Force.

The three Russian Navy ships are destroyer RFS Admiral Panteleyev (548), an Altay-class replenishment ship and rescue tug SB-408. The JSDF identified the civilian ships as pipe-laying ship Akademik Cherskiy, offshore supply ship Ivan Sidorenko and offshore supply ship Ostap Sheremeta. All three Russian civilian ships are sanctioned by the United States over to their involvement in the Russian Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline under the U.S. Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) Specially Designated Foreign Nationals (SDN) list. Work on the pipeline had been completed in September last year and it’s likely the civilian ships are now in the Pacific for new assignments by their owners.

The Russian ships were sighted 80 kilometers west of the Danjo Islands at 9 a.m. on Tuesday by the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) and subsequently went north through the Tsushima Strait and sailed toward the Sea of Japan, according to the news release. The JSDF added that Admiral Panteleyev had previously been sighted on March 24 going southwest through the Tsushima Strait. P-1 maritime patrol aircraft of Fleet Air Wing 4 based at Naval Air Station Atsugi and fast attack craft JS Shirataka (PG-829) monitored the Russian ships.

In a second news release, the JSO said People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) Dongdiao-class surveillance ship 795 had been sighted traveling southeast in the sea, 160 kilometers northwest of Amami Oshima island, Kagoshima Prefecture and subsequently sailed east between Amami Oshima and Yokoate island before traveling into the Pacific Ocean. P-1 maritime patrol aircraft of Fleet Air Wing 1 based at Kanoya Air Field and the replenishment ship JS Hamana (AOE-424) monitored the PLAN ship, according to the release.

Meanwhile, U.S. aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72) is now operating in the Philippine Sea after finishing exercises with all three arms of the JSDF that began on April 8. Abraham Lincoln, cruiser USS Mobile Bay (CG-52) and destroyer USS Spruance (DDG-111), with JMSDF destroyers JS Inazuma (DD-105) and JS Kongo (DDG-173), conducted joint drills ranging from air warfare exercises to maritime communication operations, according to a U.S. 7th Fleet news release issued Monday.

Chinese Dongdiao surveillance ship (AGI) 794 path through the Tsushima Strait on April 11, 2022. Japanese MoD Images

“Our enduring commitments to our relationships in the Indo-Pacific region continue to grow and blossom through integrated and bilateral at-sea exercises including the Japan Maritime Self Defense Force,” Rear Adm. J. T. Anderson, the commander of Carrier Strike Group 3, said in the release. “These exercises demonstrate our collective combat-credible capabilities while safeguarding our shared interests and values.”

During the exercise, Japan Ground Self-Defense Force CH-47s and troops from the Amphibious Rapid Deployment Brigade (ARDB) operated off Abraham Lincoln, while a JGSDF AH-64 helicopter conducted deck landing operations on Inazuma.

As the security environment surrounding Japan becomes even more severe, Japan and the United States are always working closely together to ensure the defense of Japan and the peace and security of the region,” Japan Defense Minister Nobuo Kishi said of the exercises during his regularly scheduled press conference on Tuesday. “Through this training, we believe that Japan and the United States have always been fully prepared to prevent unilateral attempts to change the status quo in the region and destabilize it by force.”

Landing platform dock USS John P. Murtha (LPD-26) is also operating in the Philippine Sea to perform routine operations, according to a Pentagon news release. Meanwhile, expeditionary support base USS Miguel Keith (ESB-5) is on a scheduled visit to Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni and submarine USS Alexandria (SSN-757) arrived at Commander Fleet Activities Yokosuka on Monday for a scheduled port visit.

USNI News Fleet and Marine Tracker: April 18, 2022

These are the approximate positions of the U.S. Navy’s deployed carrier strike groups and amphibious ready groups throughout the world as of April 18, 2022, based on Navy and public data. In cases where a CSG or ARG is conducting disaggregated operations, the chart reflects the location of the capital ship. Total U.S. Navy Battle […]

USNI News Photo

These are the approximate positions of the U.S. Navy’s deployed carrier strike groups and amphibious ready groups throughout the world as of April 18, 2022, based on Navy and public data. In cases where a CSG or ARG is conducting disaggregated operations, the chart reflects the location of the capital ship.

Total U.S. Navy Battle Force:

298

Ships Underway

Deployed Ships Underway Non-deployed Ships Underway Total Ships Underway
54 26 80

Ships Deployed by Fleet

Fleet Forces 3rd Fleet 4th Fleet 5th Fleet 6th Fleet 7th Fleet Total
0 0 3 13 26 70 112

In Japan

220412-N-RC359-1147 YOKOSUKA, Japan (April 12, 2022) U.S. Sen. John Cornyn from Texas meets with Sailors on the flight deck of the U.S. Navy’s only forward-deployed aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) on April 12, 2022. U.S. Navy Photo

USS Ronald Reagan (CVN-76) is in port in Yokosuka, Japan, conducting its annual winter maintenance availability. The carrier began a four-month selected restricted availability in Yokosuka on Jan. 13, following a five-month deployment to the Middle East and the Pacific.

“Employees from Puget Sound Naval Shipyard & Intermediate Maintenance Facility and Norfolk Naval Shipyard, along with the ship’s force and contractors, are working together in Japan to complete maintenance on the aircraft carrier,” according to a Navy statement.

Ships of the America Amphibious Ready Group (ARG) – which includes USS America (LHA-6), USS Green Bay (LPD-20) and USS Ashland (LSD-48) – are in port in Sasebo, Japan.

In the Sea of Japan

The Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72) sails in formation during a U.S.-Japan bilateral exercise in the Sea of Japan on April 12, 2022. U.S. Navy Photo

The Abraham Lincoln Carrier Strike Group (CSG) is in the Sea of Japan as North Korea celebrates key anniversaries. After a pause, North Korea has restarted missile tests this past year. ICBM and nuclear tests are anticipated in the near term.

Carrier Strike Group 3

Carrier
USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72), homeported in San Diego, Calif.

Carrier Air Wing 9

An E-2D Hawkeye, assigned to the “Wallbangers” of Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron (VAW) 117, launches from the flight deck of the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72) as Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) Kongō-class guide-missile destroyer JS Kongō (DDG 173) sails in formation during a U.S.-Japan bilateral exercise in the Sea of Japan on April 12, 2022. U.S. Navy Photo

Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 9, based at Naval Air Station Lemoore, Calif., is embarked aboard Abraham Lincoln and includes a total of nine squadrons and detachments:

  • The “Black Aces” of VFA-41 Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) flying F/A-18Fs from Naval Air Station Lemoore.
  • The “Tophatters” of VFA-14 – F/A-18E – from Naval Air Station Lemoore.
  • The “Vigilantes” of VFA-151 – F/A-18E – from Naval Air Station Lemoore.
  • The “Black Knights” of VMFA 314 – Marine Strike Fighter Squadron (VMFA) flying F-35Cs from Marine Corps Air Station Miramar, Calif.
  • The “Wizards” of VAQ-133 – EA-18G – Electronic Attack Squadron (VAQ) – from Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, Wash.
  • The “Wallbangers” of VAW-117 – E-2D – Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron (VAW) – from Naval Air Station Point Mugu, Calif.
  • The “Titans” of VRM-30 – CMV-22B – Fleet Logistics Multi-Mission Squadron (VRM) – from Naval Air Station North Island, Calif.
  • The “Chargers” of HSC-14 – MH-60S – Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) – from Naval Air Station North Island.
  • The “Raptors” of HSM-71 – MH-60R – Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) – from Naval Air Station North Island.

Cruiser

The Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Mobile Bay (CG 53) sails in formation alongside the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72) during a U.S.-Japan bilateral exercise in the Sea of Japan on April 12, 2022. U.S. Navy Photo

  • USS Mobile Bay (CG-53), homeported at Naval Station San Diego, Calif.

Destroyer Squadron 21

Boatswain’s Mate Seaman Destini Jones stands signalman watch during a Replenishment-at-Sea aboard the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Sampson (DDG 102) in the East China Sea on April 12, 2022. U.S. Navy Photo

Destroyer Squadron 21 is based in San Diego, Calif., and is embarked on the carrier.

  • USS Fitzgerald (DDG-62), homeported at Naval Station San Diego.
  • USS Gridley (DDG- 101), homeported at Naval Station Everett, Wash.
  • USS Sampson (DDG-102), homeported at Naval Station Everett.
  • USS Spruance (DDG-111), homeported at Naval Station San Diego.

In the Mediterranean Sea

Sailors participate in an Easter Sunday service on the flight deck of the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75), April 17, 2022. U.S. Navy Photo

The Harry S. Truman Carrier Strike Group (CSG) is in the Mediterranean Sea.

Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin has extended the deployment of the Harry S. Truman Carrier Strike Group, its escorts and Carrier Air Wing 1 as a hedge against Russian aggression in Europe. USS Harry S. Truman (CVN-75) has spent four months operating in the Mediterranean Sea since Austin ordered the strike group to remain on station in December as Russia massed forces along the Ukrainian border.

One defense official told USNI News the carrier could remain in the region until August before returning to its homeport in Norfolk, Va.

Carrier Strike Group 8

Culinary Specialist 3rd Class Justin Stephens, from Orlando, Florida, carves a ham in the aft galley of the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75), April 17, 2022. U.S. Navy Photo

Carrier
USS Harry S. Truman (CVN-75), homeported in Norfolk, Va.

Carrier Air Wing 1

Aviation Boatswain’s Mate (Handling) 1st Class Zuani Batista, from the Dominican Republic, directs the pilot of an F/A-18E Super Hornet, attached to the “Blue Blasters” of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 34, on the flight deck of the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75), April 14, 2022. U.S. Navy Photo

Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 1, based at Naval Air Station Oceana, Va., is embarked aboard Harry S. Truman and includes a total of nine squadrons and detachments:

  • The “Red Rippers” of VFA-11 Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) flying F/A-18Fs from Naval Air Station Oceana.
  • The “Fighting Checkmates” of VFA-211 – F/A-18E – from Naval Air Station Oceana.
  • The “Blue Blasters” of VFA-34 – F/A-18E – from Naval Air Station Oceana.
  • The “Sunliners” of VFA-81 – F/A-18E – from Naval Air Station Oceana.
  • The “Rooks” of VAQ-137 – EA-18G – Electronic Attack Squadron (VAQ) – from Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, Wash.
  • The “Seahawks” of VAW-126 – E-2D – Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron (VAW) – from Naval Air Station Norfolk, Va.
  • The “Rawhides” of VRC-40 – Detachment – C-2A – Fleet Logistics Support Squadron (VRC) – from Naval Air Station Norfolk.
  • The “Dragon Slayers” of HSC-11 – MH-60S – Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) – from Naval Air Station Norfolk.
  • The “Proud Warriors” of HSM-72 – MH-60R – Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) – from Naval Air Station Jacksonville, Fla.

Cruiser

Seaman Kenneth Caraballo conducts flight operations with an MH-60S Sea Hawk helicopter assigned to the “Proud Warriors” of Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 72, on the flight deck of Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS San Jacinto (CG 56) April. 12, 2022. U.S. Navy Photo

  • USS San Jacinto (CG-56), homeported at Naval Station Norfolk.

Destroyer Squadron 28

Apprenticeship Career Track Fireman Raul Caballero-Juarez, from Jacksonville, Fla., cleans a vari-nozzle during a routine maintenance aboard Arleigh-Burke class guided-missile destroyer USS Jason Dunham (DDG 109), in the East Mediterranean Sea, April 12, 2022. U.S. Navy Photo

Destroyer Squadron 28 is based in Norfolk and is embarked on the carrier.

  • USS Cole (DDG-67), homeported at Naval Station Norfolk.
  • USS Bainbridge (DDG- 96), homeported at Naval Station Norfolk.
  • USS Gravely (DDG-107), homeported at Naval Station Norfolk.
  • USS Jason Dunham (DDG-109), homeported at Naval Station Mayport, Fla.
  • USS Gonzalez (DDG-66), homeported at Naval Station Norfolk.
  • Royal Norwegian Navy frigate HNoMS Fridtjof Nansen (F310).

In the Norwegian Sea

An AV-8B Harrier, attached to the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit, takes off the flight deck of the Wasp-class amphibious assault ship USS Kearsarge (LHD 3) during a Northern Viking 22 air defense exercise, April 4, 2022. U.S. Navy Photo

The Kearsarge Amphibious Ready Group (ARG) and the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit completed Northern Viking 2022 and made a port call in Tromso, Norway, last week. Two of the three ships in the Kearsarge ARG deployed on March 16 from Naval Station Norfolk, Va., and Camp Lejeune, N.C., according to U.S. 2nd Fleet. USS Kearsarge (LHD-3) and USS Arlington (LPD-24) left the East Coast with Marine Expeditionary Unit 22 embarked. The third amphib, USS Gunston Hall (LSD-44), deployed later in March from Joint Base Little Creek-Fort Story, Va.

The 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit is based out of North Carolina and includes the command element; the aviation combat element, Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron, 263 (Reinforced); the ground combat element, Battalion Landing Team 2/6; and the logistics combat element, Combat Logistics Battalion 26.

The Icelandic off-shore patrol vessel ICGV Freyja stations in vicinity of the Wasp-class amphibious assault ship USS Kearsarge (LHD 3) during a photo exercise in the North Atlantic Ocean in support of exercise Northern Viking 22, April 4, 2022. U.S. Navy Photo

In addition to the MEU itself, embarked commands with the Kearsarge ARG include Amphibious Squadron Six, Fleet Surgical Team 2, Tactical Air Control Squadron 22, Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 28, Assault Craft Unit 2, Assault Craft Unit 4, Naval Beach Group 2 and Beach Master Unit 2.

It’s unclear if the Kearsarge ARG will be part of the ongoing NATO presence operations as the Russian invasion of Ukraine continues. Since the late February invasion, the U.S. and NATO have massed naval power in the Baltic and Mediterranean seas.

In the Eastern Pacific

An AH-1Z Viper helicopter attached to Marine Light Attack Helicopter Squadron (HMLA) 169 lands on the flight deck of amphibious assault ship USS Tripoli (LHA 7), April 12, 2022. U.S. Navy Photo

USS Tripoli (LHA-6) and USS Makin Island (LHD-8) are underway in the Southern California Operating Areas. Tripoli recently drilled with F-35B Lightning II Joint Strike Fighters to test the “lightning carrier” concept.

“The Navy and Marine Corps demonstrated a key capability when they operated 20 F-35B Lightning II jets from America-class amphibious assault carrier USS Tripoli March 30 through April 8, fully exercising the Marine Corps’ ‘lightning carrier’ concept for the first time in naval history on an amphibious assault ship,” according to a Marine Corps news release.

An MH-60R Sea Hawk helicopter assigned to Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 35 flies by amphibious assault ship USS Tripoli (LHA 7), April 13, 2022. U.S. Navy Photo

“The demonstration featured 16 jets from Marine Aircraft Group 13, 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing, with an additional four from Marine Operational Test and Evaluation Squadron 1, all operating from USS Tripoli at a high tempo. The Navy and Marine Corps team has incrementally developed the Lightning carrier concept and continues to refine its tactics, techniques, and procedures to support integrated naval operations,” the release continued.

In the Western Atlantic

USS Gerald R. Ford (CVN-78) at Norfolk Naval Station, Va., on April 8, 2022. USNI News Photo

USS George H.W. Bush (CVN-77) and USS Gerald R. Ford (CVN-78) are underway in the Virginia Capes. Ford is working up for her maiden deployment, which will be an abbreviated patrol, this fall.

In addition to these major formations, not shown are others serving in submarines, individual surface ships, aircraft squadrons, SEALs, Special Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Forces, Seabees, Coast Guard cutters, EOD Mobile Units, and more serving throughout the globe.

Japan Monitoring Russian and Chinese Military Activity in Sea of Japan, Defense Minister Says

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia – Japan is monitoring the increased Russian and Chinese military activity around its country, the Japanese defense minister said Friday. The Japanese Ministry of Defense and Japanese Self-Defense Force will handle all measures taken against Japanese territory, territorial waters and airspace in accordance with international law and the JSDF law, said Defense […]

Boatswain’s Mate 3rd Class Arthur Renteria, from Carson, California, stands starboard life buoy watch on the fantail aboard the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72) as Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) Murasame-class destroyer JS Inazuma (DD 105) sails in formation during a U.S.-Japan bilateral exercise in the Sea of Japan on April 12, 2022. U.S. Navy Photo

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia – Japan is monitoring the increased Russian and Chinese military activity around its country, the Japanese defense minister said Friday.

The Japanese Ministry of Defense and Japanese Self-Defense Force will handle all measures taken against Japanese territory, territorial waters and airspace in accordance with international law and the JSDF law, said Defense Minister Nobuo Kishi.

Kishi spoke during the regularly held post-Cabinet press conference at the Japanese Ministry of Defense, where he said the Japan Air Self-Defense Force scrambled against foreign aircraft 1,004 times in 2021, a record high since 2016, when it carried out 1,168 scrambles.

Out of last year’s figures, 722 of them involved Chinese aircraft, while 266 involved Russian aircraft. Kishi did not disclose which other countries made up the balance, but said the number of scrambles against Chinese aircraft had increased by 260 in comparison with the 2020 figures, while scrambles against Russia were about the same, with 258 in 2020.

The increasing number of China’s activities, coupled with the lack of transparency regarding its defense policy and military, has become a strong concern for the security of the region, including Japan and the international community, Kishi said.

Kishi told the media that he would not make a definitive statement on Russia’s intentions in launching 3M14K Calibre (SS-N-30A) cruise missiles from submarines in the Sea of Japan, but noted that the two submarines conducting the launch were suspected to be operating in the Far East since November of last year. He said the launches were an “intention to show the modernization of naval power domestically and internationally even in the current situation.”

“In any case, in recent years, the activities of the Russian military, including the deployment of the latest equipment and exercises/training, have tended to become more active around Japan,” Kishi added.

On Thursday, the Russian Ministry of Defense announced the launching of the cruise missiles from submarines RFS Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky (B-274) and RFS Volkhov (B-603) in the Sea of Japan and said the missiles successfully hit their target, a mock surface ship, though it did not disclose the location of the target. Fifteen warships and support ships, along with aircraft with the Russian Pacific Fleet, took part in the exercise, according to the Russian Ministry of Defense.

Volkhov previously fired a of 3M14K Calibre (SS-N-30A) cruise missile from the Sea of Japan against a coastal target 1,000 kilometers away in January. Both Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky and Volkhov, together with the corvette RFS Gremyashchiy (337), joined the Russian Pacific Fleet in November 2021, having previously been assigned to the Russian Baltic Fleet.

Asked whether North Korea would conduct additional ballistic missile launches and nuclear tests, Kishi said Pyongyang has been launching ballistic missiles frequently since the beginning of this year, and that since North Korea has turned its back on the international community, it’s possible it will take further provocative actions in the future. But the Japan Ministry of Defense will continue to work closely with the United States and other countries in regard to North Korea’s military activities, he added.

The U.S. currently has the Abraham Lincoln Carrier Strike Group operating in the Sea of Japan as a deterrence against North Korea. The strike group conducted bilateral training with the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) and the JASDF on Tuesday.

Cruiser USS Mobile Bay (CG-53) and destroyer USS Spruance (DDG-111), from the Lincoln CSG, conducted additional exercises on Wednesday and Thursday with JMSDF destroyer JS Kongō (DDG-173). The training included ballistic missile information sharing, according to a JMSDF Friday news release and a social media post.

China has been monitoring the Lincoln CSG’s activities in the Sea of Japan with its Dongdiao-class surveillance vessel number 794. The surveillance ship was seen traveling southwest, about 160 kilometers north-northeast of Tsushima, at 8 a.m. on Wednesday, according to a JSDF and Joint Staff Office news release issued Friday.

After that, the ship sailed southward in the Tsushima Strait toward the East China Sea. The ship was the same one reported traveling north in the Tsushima Strait on Monday, the JSO said, adding that Japanese destroyer JS Inazuma (DD-105) and P-1 maritime patrol aircraft from Naval Air Station Atsugi had monitored the Chinese ship. Inazuma had taken part in the exercise with the Lincoln CSG on Tuesday.

VIDEO: Lincoln Carrier Strike Group, Japanese Warships Drill Near Korean Peninsula

The Abraham Lincoln Carrier Strike Group and Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force ships are drilling in the Sea of Japan, U.S. 7th Fleet announced. On Tuesday, USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72) and its embarked air wing together with cruiser USS Mobile Bay (CG-53) and destroyer USS Spruance (DDG-111) conducted bilateral training with JMSDF destroyers JS Kongō (DDG-173), and JS Inazuma (DD-105) and […]

USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72) on April 12, 2022 in the Sea of Japan. US Navy Photo

The Abraham Lincoln Carrier Strike Group and Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force ships are drilling in the Sea of Japan, U.S. 7th Fleet announced.

On Tuesday, USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72) and its embarked air wing together with cruiser USS Mobile Bay (CG-53) and destroyer USS Spruance (DDG-111) conducted bilateral training with JMSDF destroyers JS Kongō (DDG-173), and JS Inazuma (DD-105) and Japan Air Self-Defense Force F-2 fighters.

“During bilateral exercises between Abraham Lincoln CSG and JMSDF, the two navies strengthen all-domain awareness and maneuvers across a distributed maritime environment. Bilateral operations like this one reassure our allies and partners of the U.S. commitment to maintaining a free and open Indo-Pacific region,” U.S 7th Fleet said in a social media post.

People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) Dongdiao-class surveillance vessel number 794 followed the strike group into the Sea of Japan on Monday, USNI News reported on Tuesday.

The operations come ahead of several key North Korean anniversaries – like the 110th birthday of its late founding leader Kim Il-sung on April 15 and the founding anniversary of the North Korean People’s Revolutionary Army on April 25.

“We are worried that in connection with the upcoming anniversary, [North Korea] may be tempted to take another provocative action,” U.S. State Department special representative for North Korea Sung Kim said last week, according to The Guardian.
“I don’t want to speculate too much, but I think it could be another missile launch, it could be a nuclear test.”

New satellite photos indicate that Pyongyang could be preparing for nuclear testing ahead of the anniversaries, Nikkei Asia reported on Wednesday.

In 2017, the Navy sent three carriers – USS Ronald Reagan (CVN-76), USS Nimitz (CVN-68) and USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN-71) – along with their escorts and air wings off the coast of Korea, USNI News reported at the time. Those drills coincided with a spate of North Korean ICBM tests during the same period.

Lincoln has been operating mostly in the Western Pacific since deploying from the West Coast in January.

The carrier strike group includes guided-missile cruiser USS Mobile Bay (CG-53), Carrier Air Wing Nine and guided-missile destroyers USS Fitzgerald (DDG-62), USS Gridley (DDG-101), USS Sampson (DDG-102) and USS Spruance (DDG-111).

CVW 9 includes Marine F-35C Lightning II Joint Strike Fighters from the “Black Knights” of Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 314.